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About The Founder

Simona Racek is the founder and managing member of JDTS. Simona is an International Trade Business Advisor for California International Trade Center, the Los Angeles Regional Small Business Development Center Network, and the Economic Development Collaborative program. She is also an ambassador and grant consultant for Getting to Global and a NASBITE member. Simona serves as the Vice President of Women In International Trade, Orange County Chapter, a non-profit trade organization that provides educational programs, resources, professional development and international business networking to the international trade community. Simona studied international business at California State University, Los Angeles, worked as an international trade paralegal, and received the 2016 Educational Award for Excellence in Export Development from The District Export Council of Southern California and Port of Los Angeles.

Why is Simona passionate about trade?

"When I was a young girl growing up in communist Romania, I will never forget the day my father brought home banned VHS tapes of American movies translated and dubbed in Romanian. Back then, we did not have access to information or goods from outside our borders. We were not allowed to know that there was a better life outside. As I watched these banned films with my family and neighbors, I could not help but be in awe.

Even more amazing than the stories these films portrayed were the differences they revealed between the Romanian experience and the American experience. Through these tapes, we discovered the goods that were available and accessible outside Romanian borders, and realized there was a different way of life beyond the one we lived. These movies gave us access to new information and customs; but above all, they gave us access to hope.

When I think about my past, I always come back to those revelatory hours watching those films. No matter where you live, you should have access to the best that the world has to offer. And this is why I want to connect the world. I want to bring products that are available in one part of the globe to everyone else who does not have access to obtain them. The trade industry is the way to do that,  spreading goods, services and information to all."