We caught up with the brilliant and insightful David Biber a few weeks ago and have shared our conversation below.
David, appreciate you joining us today. How has Covid changed your business model?
After twenty years in the event and catering business, in 2018 I purchased Hidden Oaks Ranch to pursue my dream of building a movie studio. After two years of construction on the studio and remodeling an old horse barn, COVID-19 struck with a vengeance in February/March of 2020. There was still work to do in the new studio, and The Barn still needed a bathroom and kitchenette. Plans to have a full service studio supported by a bunkhouse and activity venue were seriously derailed. Conditions worsened when in April of 2020, COVID-19 claimed my mother.
It had been a bare knuckle, fifteen round championship fight, but in July of 2021 we celebrated the grand opening of the Rick Dean Studio at Hidden Oaks with a dedication party. My friend Rick Dean had helped develop the THX Sound System for movie theaters, and went on to be the Tech Guru at Lucasfilm and Industrial Light and Magic. The Studio features a THX Sound System.
As a movie ranch and studio owner, I know that there is always work to be done, and improvements to be made.
David, before we move on to more of these sorts of questions, can you take some time to bring our readers up to speed on you and what you do?
My youngest daughter Sarah once said “There is no logical trajectory to my father’s career.” In 1986, when Kathy and I moved our family to California, I worked as a computer consultant. I had been fortunate to author a successful software suite, and was offered nearly job I applied for. After having a successful stint, Exhibitor & Presenter at MacWorld several times, and more, I retired from the computer world in 1999 at the age of 46 and founded an Event and Catering company, Two Guys Grilling. Clients in the aerospace and defense industry led to a four year stint as a chef for the Joint Chiefs of Staff, Caterer to Congress, and Playboy.
During these years, I developed friendships with many notables. To this day I still serve on the US Army Advisory Board. In 2020 Kathy suggested (strongly) that I stop being a roady as I was approaching the age of 70.
Can you share a story from your journey that illustrates your resilience?
When I was a youngster, my mother told me that I could do anything I put my mind to. I took her literally. In the late 1970s and early 1980s I taught myself to program computers. I authored a manload/machineload/plantload program for a heavy manufacturing job shop. Years later, I learned some of the essentials of movie making from mentors like Rick Dean, Producer/Director Mark Savage, food television pioneer Steve Cassarino (tv’s Chef Roc), and John Semper jr., author of Green Lantern: Beware My Power, that just premiered at Comicon 2022 to great fanfare.
Can you tell us about a time you’ve had to pivot?
Carpe Diem! When opportunity presents itself… My life seems to have been divided in to twenty year segments. Each wonderful experience has given me the tools to advance to the next stage of my life. keep a concise mental inventory of gained assets, mental and physical. Consider these assets when you consider the next life stage.
The only thing that ever really held me back was me. When I realized that, I knew my mother’s advice was true.
- Website: HiddenOaksRanchandStudio.com
- Instagram: https://www.instagram.com/hiddenoaksranchandstudio/
- Facebook: https://www.facebook.com/Hidden-Oaks-Ranch-Studio-683287915385043
- Linkedin: https://www.linkedin.com/in/david-biber-nick-danger-30810210/
- Youtube: https://www.youtube.com/channel/UCgdHGhhrvjjh7NAugaAn9Ag
- Yelp: https://www.yelp.com/search?find_desc=hidden+oaks+ranch+and+studio&find_loc=fallbrook%2C+CA