Page 1



CHAMBER MEMBER RESTAURANTS Guide to fine and fun dining

Home for the holidays A holiday gift from Wells Fargo Page 19

Dec. 2011 / Jan. 2012

East Bay Women in Business Nicole Taylor to speak Page 22

Page 14

Oakland Business Review

The annual America’s Children’s Holiday Parade attracted 100,000 spectators. See page 3.

> Engage more deeply with Oakland schools, says Superintendent Smith There’s no quick fix to the problems with Oakland schools, says Oakland Unified School District Superintendent Dr. Tony Smith. “We’re in for the long haul,” he says.

Smith, who spoke at a recent Chamber of Commerce Power Breakfast, does have a “wish list” for three years from now – that every fih grader is ready for high school, that Oakland students have the highest quality teachers day in and day out, and that the District has narrowed the gap between the grades of African American and Hispanic students and the rest of the student population. “No one can do everything,” said Smith, “but everyone can do something.” As a result, the superintendent asked all businesspeople to engage more deeply with the school district. – continued on page 22

> 100,000 enjoy 12th annual parade Some 100,000 spectators filled the streets of downtown Oakland on Dec. 3 to witness a great holiday tradition – the 12th annual America’s Children’s Holiday Parade. The traditional holiday event, sponsored again by Comcast, saw records being broken. The parade not only contained some 100 units on the streets of downtown Oakland, but it also had a record number of marching bands (22), including two international bands – a rocking band from Jamaica (pictured below) and another from Guatemala. This is the only holiday parade in the country that features bands from outside the United States. For more information and pictures from the parade, see page 3. ✮

> New ‘Junior CEOs’ created The Oakland Metropolitan Chamber of Commerce and Oakland Unified School District have collaborated to create the Junior Community Entrepreneurs of Oakland (Junior CEOs) to encourage OUSD high school students in the process of community/civic engagement and business development. The program, Junior CEOs, will develop youth leadership and youth voice, and will engage students in thoughtful discourse and action to improve relationships between youth and business. This will in turn positively affect OUSD student opportunities as the district works to build full-service community schools. The mission of the Junior CEOs program is to support and encourage Oakland youth with entrepreneurial skills to develop business enterprises and participate in complementary civic processes. Student program goals include: • Learning about building development – zoning, licenses, fire, police and community development • Working collaboratively and connecting to their communities with the support of their families, community partners, schools and civic organizations. • Understanding city of Oakland legislative processes • Developing critical 21st century leadership skills (public speaking, civic engagement, collaboration) while conducting action research and creating a peer support network • Building supportive mentor relationships as they plan for high school graduation and postsecondary success Students will participate in a series of monthly after-school workshops at the Chamber of Commerce. The workshops will alternate entrepreneurial training and civic leadership exploration. Upon completion of the first year program, students will have the option to return in their 11th and 12th grade years to the Junior CEOs as peer mentors to new 10th grade members or as paid or unpaid interns with Chamber members. Junior CEOs is a great opportunity to create connections between youth and business throughout the city of Oakland. The focus upon Linked Learning opportunities allows young people to grow and learn through hands-on experiences in “real-life” settings. For more information contact the OUSD College and Career Readiness Office at (510) 273-2360.

> Mayor meets with Chamber to strengthen partnership

▲ The Chamber’s recent Board of Mayor Jean Quan met with the Directors meeting featured visits Chamber of Commerce Board by Mayor Quan as well as the of Directors recently to heads of various ethnic chambers enhance the critical cityof commerce in the city. Pictured business partnership for left to right are John Nelson, the Oakland. Metro Chamber’s chairman of the “We have faced incredible board; Wil Hardee, president and challenges over the last 11 chief executive officer of the months,” said the Mayor, “yet Oakland African-American as Mayor my commitment to Chamber; Mayor Quan; Metro Oakland and its economic viChamber President Joe Haraburda; tality is unwavering. It’s time Carl Chan, president of the now for us to come together Oakland Chinatown Chamber of and focus on the important isCommerce Foundation; and Jose sues we care about – creating Duenas, president and chief jobs, attracting and supporting executive officer of the Hispanic businesses and delivering the Chamber of Commerce Alameda major economic development County. projects on our horizon.” The Mayor covered a number of topics, from the city budget and public safety to education and promoting business and international trade. The Mayor told the Chamber Board that the budget – while difficult after years of declining revenue – was more transparent and better set up with reserves than had been true in the past. She appreciated the concessions made by labor groups, and was confident that the loss of the parcel tax (Measure I) would not imperil city services. Mayor Quan indicated that she expects to continue to streamline city services to make the most out of city resources, and expressed confidence in her new management team, City Administrator Deanna Santana and Assistant City Administrators Scott Johnson and Fred Blackwell, all three of whom have been with the city for just 3-4 months. “This is the best executive team we’ve had in a decade,” she said. The Mayor also spoke on a variety of other subjects: On crime – The Mayor added 25 police officers last month and will assign them outside local middle schools. She also spoke highly of security cameras in Oakland neighborhoods and hopes to put up more. “Security cameras are working in some very tough neighborhoods,” she said. She also said that some 80 percent of Oakland police officers live outside the city. “I’d like to hire some home-grown kids,” she said, and added, “There will be more police walking the streets next year.” On education – She’s created an education cabinet hosted at Mills College to focus on pre-school children and programs to keep older kids in school. “It will give children in this city a second chance,” she added. On business – She’s already met with some of Oakland’s top CEOs and plans to meet with more. She’s also creating a Positively Oakland campaign to help jointly market the city, and insists that if residents purchased 25 percent more from local stores, that would raise an additional $10 million in sales tax. “We need to work together to change the image of the city,” she said. On Occupy Oakland – The encampment, she insisted, was opened by young people and was overtaken by “anarchists and homeless.” Now, she said, “the city’s much more unified.” On the Port of Oakland – If the Port could double exports, she said, some 5,000 jobs would be created. ■ April 2010 |


Parade Sponsors

Title Sponsor

Santa’s Helper

Toyland Sponsor

Children’s Delight

Friends of the Parade


| OBR Oakland Business Review |

12th annual

Comcast America’s Children’s Holiday Parade


12th annual Holiday Parade will be seen around the world

> Catch the parade

Celeste Kellogg, and by The Honeybee Trio, three young

from the comfort of your home

were also children’s characters Cat in the Hat, the Berenstain

family fun in Oakland this holiday season. The 12th annual Comcast America’s Children’s Holiday Parade, which was held earlier this month, will be telecast around the world, thanks to PBS stations nationwide and by the American Forces Network in 175 different countries. This year the parade set records, with more than 100 units on the streets of downtown Oakland, more children’s characters (42) than ever before, a record number of balloons (14), and a record number of marching bands (22), including two international bands – from Jamaica and Guatemala. This is the only holiday parade in the country that features bands from outside the United States. Other highlights included live performances by Mr. Steve, the star of PBS KIDS, by recording artist

Bears, Snoopy and Charlie Brown and the rest of the Peanuts gang, the Tap Dancing Christmas Trees, and of course Santa

Throughout the country, in parts of Canada, and in areas overseas, millions will enjoy the sites and sounds of

women who specialize in hits from the 1930s and ‘40s. There

The 12th annual Comcast America’s Children’s Holiday Parade was a grand success on Dec. 3, attracting some 100,000 people to the streets of downtown Oakland. But if you missed the parade in person, you can view it on KTVU Channel 2 at 3 p.m. on Saturday, Dec. 17 and then again on Christmas Day at 2 p.m. Or, check KICU Channel 36 at 2 p.m. on Dec. 18 and at noon on Christmas Day. You can also view it on Peralta TV (channel 28 in Oakland, Piedmont and Emeryville and channel 27 in Berkeley and Alameda) at 7:30 p.m. on Dec. 15, 1:30 p.m. on Dec. 20, 1 a.m. on Dec. 21, 1:30 p.m. on Dec. 24, 1 a.m. and 11:30 am. on Christmas Day, Dec. 25, 1:30 p.m. on Dec. 29, and 1 a.m. on Dec. 30. For more information, visit or call the Chamber at (510) 874-4800. ■

himself. For the last number of years more than 100,000 people have lined the streets in downtown Oakland to see the beautiful floats, enormous balloons and marching bands. The parade is one of only three Christmas parades in America to be broadcast nationally. This year it will be picked up by PBS throughout the country and in parts of Canada, Puerto Rico and Guam, as well as by stations throughout California. It will also be broadcast to 175 countries via the American Forces Network and broadcast locally by KTVU Channel 2 and KQED in the San Francisco-Oakland Bay Area, by KICU in San Jose, and by Comcast and Peralta TV. The parade was founded and is managed by the Oakland Metropolitan Chamber of Commerce. The Comcast America’s Children’s Holiday Parade is also a holiday championship for the marching band circuit, sanctioned by the Northern California Band Association. ■

December 2011 / January 2012 | 3

Names in the news • Bringing a combined total of nearly four decades’ experience in land use and environmental law, Patricia Curtin and Todd Williams join Wendel, Rosen, Black & Dean LLP as partners. Curtin will lead the firm’s Land Use practice. Formerly principals with Walnut Creek’s Morgan Miller Blair, Curtin and Williams represent both private and public sector clients throughout the state and contribute to the breadth and depth of Patricia Curtin Wendel Rosen’s core practice areas. • Ten Kaiser Permanente northern California hospitals have been named 2011 Leapfrog Top Hospitals, an honor that rewards medical centers for outstanding success in such areas as using electronic health records to reduce medication and other errors, lowering infection rates, maintaining appropriate physician and nursing staffing, and other measures of safety and efficiency. Eight Kaiser Permanente hospitals in Todd Williams southern California also received the honor, which means that 18 of this year’s 65 Top Hospitals in the U.S. are Kaiser Permanente facilities in California. • The Port of Oakland has hired Marily Mora as assistant director of aviation for Oakland International Airport. She is responsible for the day-to-day operations of the airport with direct responsibility for the airside, landside, security, administration, and facilities departments. Prior to her appointment, Mora was the executive vice president and chief operations officer of the Reno-Tahoe Airport Authority for the past 12 Marily Mora years. • The Oakland office of the international design and architecture firm Perkins Eastman is expanding with the addition of three professionals. New hires include Trish Callo, senior associate; Sayo Kawamura, interior designer; and Carolyn Dowd, marketing manager. In addition, Heather Kilday has been promoted to senior associate. • The Oakland Builders Alliance (OBA) has appointed civic leader Mark McClure as president of the Board. Born and raised in Oakland, McClure brings a long history in public service and nonprofit experience to the OBA. His past appointments include a member of the Chamber of Commerce Board of Directors, chairman of the Oakland Planning Commission, commissioner for the Port of Oakland and Mark McClure president of The Crucible. He currently serves as Board member of the Oakland Zoo. • Capture Technologies is working to install 19 new surveillance cameras and one NVR at the Pacific Renaissance Plaza in the Chinatown district of downtown Oakland. Previous to this new solution, the plaza only carried analog cameras, which were leaving some areas vulnerable to crime. Due to a high rate of unreported crime in the area, the Oakland Police Department encouraged businesses to upgrade their systems. By providing them with the security solution they need, Capture Technologies has helped shed some light on uncovered areas, while providing service that is only a few minutes away. • Biotech Partners has been selected as a finalist in Ashoka Changemaker’s Partnering for Excellence: Innovations in Science, Technology, Engineering, and Math Education (STEM) competition, in partnership with Carnegie Corporation of New York and The Opportunity Equation. Biotech Partners is one of only ten organizations and programs selected from 265 applications received from around the country, including Alaska and Hawaii. • The Oakland Unified School District’s Peralta Elementary School has been named a 2010-2011 National Blue Ribbon School, one of the highest honors available in K-12 education. The school is one of two in Alameda County, one of four in the Bay Area, and one of just 21 in the state of California to earn this recognition. The program recognizes schools that are “national models of excellence,” as demonstrated by superior overall achievement. ■


| OBR Oakland Business Review |

From the President | Joe Haraburda

Good news from the Chamber Working for your success Let us be vigilant – What is at stake? As observers of the Oakland Chamber know, we have been against the unlawful occupying of both city and private property. We will continue to openly support business and the strength it brings to a community! Our focus must remain steadfast to stand up for businesses in every part of Oakland and to bring new businesses to our city. Jobs are a key factor to improved public safety and a good quality of life. Let us be vigilant and speak out as many of you have to protect our investment! Congrats – Wells Fargo is to be congratulated for its generous $975,000 grant to Habitat for Humanity and $650,000 to the East Bay’s School Foundations! Our major corporate members have made a significant difference in Oakland because of all they do to support the nonprofit community. Hats off as well to Kaiser Permanente, The Clorox Company and Bank of America for supporting so many worthy organizations! Junior CEOs – The Chamber has just embarked on a new partnership – Junior CEOs, a program to encourage Oakland Unified School District students! It’s a chance to mentor. Join us in this newly formed program to engage high school students in the process of community/civic engagement and business development. In the past several days OUSD staff and volunteers have interviewed a number of students applying to participate in the program. Mentors will be needed! For more information, please contact Courtney Riley at The bands played on… The Oakland Metropolitan Chamber of Commerce, which founded and manages America’s Children’s Holiday Parade, thanks the volunteers who planned and implemented a delightful day for thousands of children worldwide on Saturday, Dec. 3. The traditional holiday event, sponsored again by Comcast, saw records being broken. The parade not only contained some 100 units on the streets of downtown Oakland, but it also had a record number of marching bands (22),

including two international bands – from Guatemala and Jamaica. This is the only holiday parade in the country that features bands from outside the United States. Special thanks go to our sponsors, who saw the value in promoting a parade that sent a clear message to a nation-wide and world-wide audience – that Oakland is a family-friendly city with countless things to do. Special thanks to our still photographers, Auintard Henderson and Sami Yousif, and to the parade co-anchors – Claudine Wong and Dave Clark (both from KTVU) and Miss Rosa (from PBS KIDS). In case you missed the parade, keep in mind that it will be shown on TV locally throughout the holiday season. See page 3 for a complete list of channels and broadcast times. Mobile food vending plan – The city of Oakland will experiment with mobile food vending in 2012. The City Council has approved a plan that would allow group mobile food vending or “food pods” to operate in many areas of the city – generally business/commercial areas of Council Districts 1, 2, 3 and 4 (mobile food vending has been in force in the Fruitvale District of Oakland for more than 10 years). An organizer could apply for a food pod permit on private property, with the approval of the owner, on a parcel at least 100 feet from a restaurant. The food pod would include three or more mobile food vendors who would operate for four hours, no more than two days a week and no more than 40 days a year. The organizer will be responsible to assure all licenses, permits and rules are followed by vendors and customers in the food pod. After all business and property owners within 300 feet of the proposed food pod are notified, the City Administrator will decide whether to approve the permit. The Chamber and Oakland Restaurant Association worked with city staff to assure the concerns of existing restaurants were addressed. Have a wonderful holiday season – All of us at the Chamber wish all a happy and healthy New Year and that your holiday season brings joy and happiness! We are grateful for the support you have given us this year and commit to working on your behalf for a prosperous and successful 2012! ■

We stand up for businesses in every part of Oakland.

December 2011 / January 2012 | 5


| OBR Oakland Business Review |

economic development Creating a strong economy

> Proposed Gateway Park and Reauthorization of Measure B by Eleanor Hollander, AICP

▲ At the Economic Development The Chamber’s November Economic Forum (left to right) – Chamber Development Forum covered two topEconomic Development Director ics: (1) Art Dao, executive director of the Eleanor Hollander; Mike Anderson Alameda County Transportation (East Bay Regional Park District); Commission discussed the Tess Lengyel and Art Dao (Alameda County Transportation Reauthorization of Measure B (on the Commission); Leslie Pritchett ballot in November 2012) and (2) Leslie (Friends of the Gateway); and Pritchett of Friends of the Gateway and Charissa Frank (Swinerton Mike Anderson of the East Bay Regional Builders), chair of the Chamber’s Economic Development Parks shared plans for the development of Department. Gateway Park at the base of the eastern span of the Bay Bridge. More than 10 years ago, the Bay Bridge design team identified a unique opportunity to create a park that would provide a memorable gateway to Oakland at the point where the new bridge touches down in the East Bay. The park would offer an unprecedented way to experience the bay and the new bridge. Representatives of nine agencies are working to explore the possibilities of a new park for local residents, commuters, businesses, international travelers, environmentalists, boaters, cyclists, and others. Anderson’s presentation detailed how the park could be a marquee entrance into Oakland and provide a good link to the new bridge’s bike and pedestrian path. He also reviewed other proposed features of the park, including bay trail access at Radio Beach, a new transportation museum, new concert venue, and areas for both passive and active recreation. Next, Pritchett, project co-director of Friends of the Gateway (FOG), described FOG as an expanding community of artists and innovators who champion the creation of a unique public art space at the foot of the new Bay Bridge. Pritchett demonstrated how large art installations can be a catalyst for new investment and tourist attraction, citing how Christo’s saffron-colored gates in New York’s Central Park netted almost $254,000 to the city during just a two-week installation. She also reviewed a number of art/sculpture installation projects currently underway in West Oakland, including the “Big Rig Jig” and a number of sculptor Bruce Beasley’s works. Pritchett stressed that the Gateway space is large and will need a big idea to complement it – the Friends of the Gateway think that the power exists here in Oakland to generate that “big idea” with art. Then, Art Dao described how his organization is working to improve transportation opportunities for all citizens throughout Alameda County. He explained that the Alameda County Transportation Commission is a new agency whose goal is to plan, fund and deliver transportation programs and policy for a vibrant Alameda County. ACTC is funded with two different sales taxes that were passed by the voters. Measure B, Alameda County’s half-cent transportation sales tax, was originally approved in 1986, which brought revenue into Alameda County and enabled transportation projects to move forward. The funds went to administering timely project and program delivery on capital projects, local transportation, transit operations, and special transportation programs like paratransit. Voters reauthorized the half-cent sales tax in November 2000 to deliver a fresh set of transportation improvements including bicycle and pedestrian safety and transit center development. In 2000, The Alameda County Transportation Improvement Authority (ACTIA) was created to deliver the new set of authorized projects. In June of 2010, the ACTIA merged with the Alameda County Congestion Management Agency (ACCMA), whose primary responsibility is to coordinate a congestion management program designed to assist local governments in tackling the complex problem of traffic congestion. The newly formed agency, the Alameda County Transportation Commission, will take the reauthorization of Measure B funds to the ballot again in November of 2012.

When the two former agencies merged in mid-2010, there was an efficiency savings of nearly $3 million, and Dao got 22 new bosses! The “bosses” are actually the commissioners of the board which include representatives of the 14 cities in Alameda County, AC Transit, BART, and a representative from the Alameda County Board of Supervisors. The unique structure of the ACTC allows nearly $57 million to be awarded to direct service contracts for improving transportation countywide. Projects that were funded with sales tax alone include the 5.5-mile BART extension to Warm Springs, the I-238 widening to improve trucking, HOT (highoccupancy-toll) lanes on I-680, the Oakland Airport Connector, the San Leandro Slough bike bridge on the bay trail, and numerous Safe Routes to Schools programs throughout the county. So, to continue their work, ACTA is going to the voters again in 2012, and asking to extend the half-cent sales tax in perpetuity, and add on a half-penny tax to be affirmed by a simple majority of voters every 20 years. To show how the money would be spent, right now, ACTA is developing a new Transportation Expenditure Plan (TEP) that outlines transit improvements based on identified needs and are compatible with regional and local comprehensive long-range plans (30-year scope). The development of the TEP has (and continues) to involve extensive community outreach, including a citizen watchdog committee. Currently the reauthorization of Measure B on the 2012 ballot is polling at 79 percent approval rate. To get involved with ACTA visit ■ Eleanor Hollander, AICP is the Chamber’s economic development director.

> Green your business Distinguish your business in the marketplace as an environmental leader by becoming a certified green business. A certified green business operates efficiently with consideration to the community and the environment. It is not difficult to become a certified green business if you are operating under principles of resource conservation and pollution prevention. Currently there are 500 certified green businesses in Alameda County, almost 3,000 in the Bay Area. And recently the Governor signed AB 913, which recognizes the Green Business Program statewide. What are the benefits of becoming a certified green business? • Marketing edge among conscientious consumers • Respected third party review of your environmental performance • Inclusion in the ”green supply chain” • Recognition as a good community neighbor • Enhances employee morale, health and productivity • More efficient operations • Visibility via website online directory Because restaurants use a good deal of water and energy and potentially produce large volumes of waste, the Green Business Program is an opportunity for improved management and cost savings. Many green restaurants report significant savings on their water and energy bills. Even office operations have demonstrated savings in their utility bills. Oakland is home to approximately 100 certified green businesses, and the city of Oakland is committed to assisting the business community in dramatically increasing that number. Green business experts stand ready to assist Oakland businesses through the certification process, bringing in additional expertise and resources (maybe rebates!) from partners including Oakland Shines, East Bay Municipal Utility District, and Pacific Gas & Electric. In order to become a green business, visit and click on “Apply.” There will be a short questionnaire – what kind of business, size, etc, to send you to the right checklist that offers you a set of “best practices” in water, energy, waste and recycling and pollution prevention. You indicate which measures you currently practice or plan on implementing. If you meet the required number of measures in each category, you are ready for the onsite audit. Representatives from the program and water and energy utilities will come to your site and review your practices to verify that you are doing what you indicated on your checklist. Remember, if your business is located in Oakland, you are entitled to special technical assistance in meeting the checklist requirements. For more information, contact Oakland Recycles at (510) 238-SAVE (7283) or email ■

December 2011 / January 2012 | 7


Small business


> Tax savings for exporters by Tom Neff

Over the years, Congress has repealed, under pressure from the World Trade Organization, many trade incentives that have been available to U.S. businesses. However, one powerful tax-savings vehicle remains – the Interest Charge Domestic International Sales Corporation, or “IC-DISC.” The IC-DISC has been in place since 1984, however it was not until passage of the Jobs and Growth Tax Relief Reconciliation Act of 2004 (“JGTRRA”) that its use could provide significant tax savings. Under this Tom Neff Act, dividends paid by an IC-DISC qualify for the favorable 15 percent tax rate on dividend income. Follows is a discussion of how a U.S. business can take advantage of this favorable tax rate. How does an IC-DISC work? Generally, a business that manufactures goods in the U.S. for export will set up a corporation (the IC-DISC) here in the U.S. In order to qualify, the goods must meet the “50 percent content” rule, meaning that 50 percent of the value of the exports must be U.S.-based (i.e., cost of parts, labor and markup). A tax-deductible commission, based upon the amount of income from sales of exported goods, will be paid to the IC-DISC. The commission will be the greater of 4 percent of gross export sales or 50 percent of net income from export sales; this rule may be applied on a product-by-product basis. The IC-DISC is a tax-exempt entity; therefore no tax is assessed to the IC-DISC on the commission income received. In turn, the U.S. business has received a corresponding tax deduction for this payment. The IC-DISC can make dividend payments to the owners, who will be taxed at a maximum 15 percent rate on the amount of dividends received. The result? A permanent 20 percent tax savings for qualifying U.S. exporters.

To summarize the benefits of the IC-DISC: • Permanent tax savings on export sales; • Increased liquidity for shareholders or the business; • Ability to leverage the cost of capital (since IC-DISC earnings need to be distributed to the shareholders); • Opportunities to create management incentives (for example, by giving shares in the IC-DISC as a commission for generating export sales); • Means to facilitate succession or estate planning (by drawing taxadvantaged cash out of the business) One important point is that it is not necessary for the U.S. business to be the exporter of the goods; a situation in which the business sells the goods to a distributor/wholesaler for export will also qualify. Please contact your RINA tax professional if you would like a further explanation of this tax savings strategy. ■ Tom Neff is a stockholder with RINA Accountancy Corp.


> Ambassador of the Month

Marvin Clark has been honored as the ▲ Earlier this year Ambassador of the Month Marvin Clark Chamber’s Ambassador of the Month (right) was congratulated for for October. being named 2010 Chamber Clark is a principal of First Building Ambassador of the Year. Maintenance Company (FBMC), which Providing the honors were specializes in green cleaning. This outgoing Ambassadors Chair Oakland-based building and facility MaryAnne Kaplan and Chamber President Joe Haraburda. maintenance company has been providing high quality service to the Bay Area for nearly 50 years. Working alongside family members Booker and Marcus, Clark and the company handle all things in the cleaning line – general janitorial, window washing, carpet cleaning, steam cleaning, street sweeping, garage cleaning, landscaping BID, and other handyman services. Clark’s Chamber involvement as an Ambassador has provided him the opportunity to meet new people, understand their businesses, and make friends. In addition to the Ambassador Committee, he’s also involved in the Chamber’s Nonprofit Roundtable (which meets the third Tuesday of each month from 2:30-430 p.m.) and Toastmasters Club (meets the first and third Friday from 12:30-1:30 p.m.), both at the Chamber offices. Clark is also a member of the Phi Beta Sigma Fraternity, Inc., Iota Alpha Sigma Chapter, and is the co-founder and advisor of the Greater Bay Area Sigma Club (SBC), which is a nonprofit mentoring organization that prepares middle and high school young men for college. The Sigma Beta Club has developed a partnership with Holy Names University, and the school has become the regular meeting place for the organization. To learn more about the service provided by First Building Maintenance Company, or to get more involved with the Sigma Beta Club, contact Marvin Clark at (510) 482-8900 or at (510) 867-8436, or via email at The Sigma Beta Club will host its Christmas gathering on Sunday, Dec. 18 at Holy Names University and will partner with the Oakland Raiders for a fundraiser against the San Diego Chargers on Sunday, Jan 1. Contact Clark for ticket information. The club is also sponsoring the 34th annual College Fair with emphasis on Black Colleges on Saturday, Jan. 7 at St. Stephen CME Church, 2301 Union Ave., Fairfield, CA 94533 at 2 p.m. ■


| OBR Oakland Business Review |


Small business


> ‘Creative space’ – the new buzz word by John Dolby and Dane Hooks

More and more companies lately have chosen to ditch the traditional sheetrock jungle office environment for a more creative and collaborative office environment that includes an open floor plan, high ceilings, and natural light. With the recent tech boom in the Bay Area you are hearing about “creative space” more than ever. But this coveted “creative space” doesn’t just exist South of Market in San Francisco; there is an incredible wealth of creative office space right here in Oakland in Jack London Square, Old Oakland, the City Center area, and Uptown. Let’s start in Jack London. Many of the classic waterfront brick and timber warehouses have been rehabbed into exceptional and one-of-a-kind creative office environments. Take 318 Harrison, for example, home to the Saroni Sugar Company from 1922-1956. It now makes an ideal space for an expanding tech or creative firm. Another great example of creative space in Jack London can be found at 331 Jefferson. The advertising firm Jocoto was located in San Francisco until they took a look at 331 Jefferson and decided to make the move across the bay to Jack London. Go up the street on Broadway a couple of blocks and you will find Old Oakland. Once the western terminus of the Transcontinental Railroad, it now offers a variety of unique and creative office space. The Arlington building has ideal creative space with exposed brick, high ceilings and great natural light in each suite and is home to the creative firm Bedrock Consultants. Across the street from the Tribune Tower near City Center you can find elegant brick and timber historical buildings like 414 13th St. Also known as the Perry Building, this classic structure has been renovated and modernized to accommodate a wide variety of office ▲ The brick and timber building at uses. Mars Advertising now calls 414 13th St. has been renovated and modernized to accommodate a wide this building home. variety of office uses. Up the street in Uptown you can find the iconic I. Magnin building. A premiere department store for almost 60 years, the space was extensively rehabbed in 2000 and now offers an ideal creative office environment with 20-foot ceilings and open floor plans. During the dot com boom in 2000, saw the potential in this building and spent millions of dollars renovating it into the perfect home for a tech company – but unfortunately turned out to be another dot-com casualty in 2002. Many tech companies and start-ups have found the technology infrastructure in Oakland has more than enough to handle their needs. Oakland is home to a vast telecommunications network with hundreds of miles of fiber-optic running throughout primary corridors in downtown and Jack London Square, so whatever bandwidth your company requires, Oakland has you covered. Not only does Oakland have a quality inventory of “creative space,” the price per square foot is more than 100 percent less than the South of Market area of San Francisco. Now more than ever tech companies, start-ups, and other creative firms are choosing to locate to Oakland and take advantage of the unique space it has to offer at an incredible discount compared to San Francisco, Emeryville and Berkeley.

▲ The advertising firm Jocoto was • Ability to leverage the cost of located in San Francisco until their capital (since IC-DISC earnings need representatives took a look at 331 to be distributed to the shareholders); Jefferson St. • Opportunities to create management incentives (for example, by giving shares in the IC-DISC as a commission for generating export sales); • Means to facilitate succession or estate planning (by drawing taxadvantaged cash out of the business) One important point is that it is not necessary for the U.S. business to be the exporter of the goods; a situation in which the business sells the goods to a distributor/wholesaler for export will also qualify. Please contact your RINA tax professional if you would like a further explanation of this tax savings strategy. ■ John Dolby is senior vice president and Dane Hooks is an associate with Grubb & Ellis Company.

How does an IC-DISC work? Generally, a business that manufactures goods in the U.S. for export will set up a corporation (the IC-DISC) here in the U.S. In order to qualify, the goods must meet the “50 percent content” rule, meaning that 50 percent of the value of the exports must be U.S.-based (i.e., cost of parts, labor and markup). A tax-deductible commission, based upon the amount of income from sales of exported goods, will be paid to the IC-DISC. The commission will be the greater of 4 percent of gross export sales or 50 percent of net income from export sales; this rule may be applied on a product-by-product basis. The IC-DISC is a tax-exempt entity; therefore no tax is assessed to the IC-DISC on the commission income received. In turn, the U.S. business has received a corresponding tax deduction for this payment. The IC-DISC can make dividend payments to the owners, who will be taxed at a maximum 15 percent rate on the amount of dividends received. The result? A permanent 20 percent tax savings for qualifying U.S. exporters. To summarize the benefits of the IC-DISC: • Permanent tax savings on export sales; • Increased liquidity for shareholders or the business;

December 2011 / January 2012 | 9

> Three Chamber members win

> Oakland small businesses

StopWaste Awards

recognized for creating jobs

by Justin Lehrer

Six Oakland-based businesses received national recognition on Nov. 10, 2011 in New York City at a job creation event. Prior to the Inner City Capital Connections (ICCC) invitation-only “Increasing Access to Capital” event, ICCC selected 275 inner city businesses out of more than 3,000 applications to meet with 150 investors, representing private equity, venture capital, angel networks, mezzanine financing and debt. Working alongside family members Booker and Marcus, Clark and the company handle all things in the cleaning line –general janitorial, window washing, carpet cleaning, steam cleaning, street sweeping, garage cleaning, landscaping BID, and other handyman services. Out of the 275 businesses, six are based in Oakland, and three of those are Chamber of Commerce members – ABE Security Services, Inc., Acumen Building Enterprise, Inc. and Revolution Foods. The companies traveled to New York to raise money and create jobs. A partnership between the Initiative for a Competitive Inner City (ICIC), Bank of America and the U.S. Small Business Administration, ICCC increases the financial sophistication of inner city entrepreneurs and introduces them to capital providers, and in turn, transforms communities. Ana Chretien, the president and chief executive officer of ABC Security Services, Inc. was in attendance. ABC is growing rapidly and creating jobs. It employs certified security personnel who provide safety and security protection and loss prevention services. The company has been honored as one of the top 25 minority-owned businesses in the East Bay, and is one of the top 500 largest Hispanic-owned businesses in the U.S. Another Chamber member, Acumen Building Enterprise, Inc., is focused on creating jobs in Oakland and the greater Bay Area and improving the local community. Walter Allen, president and chief executive officer, believes that passage of President Obama’s American Jobs Act of 2011 will fuel growth for Acumen, Oakland and the nation. His company is a professional consulting firm that delivers top-flight engineering, cost-effective project controls and ground-breaking technology implementation. Allen says he plans to finance Acumen’s growth through capital funding to expand operations and launch the AcuFare Smartcard Reader System designed for small transit agencies, hospitals and security applications.

Oakland Metropolitan Chamber of Commerce members were well represented among the 2011 StopWaste Business Efficiency Award winners, honored at a recent ceremony at the Oakland Asian Cultural Center. The annual celebration, co-hosted by public agency StopWaste.Org and the East Bay Economic Development Alliance, recognizes Alameda County organizations for outstanding achievements in waste reduction, environmental performance, and mentoring peers on business efficiency practices. Three StopWaste awards in the Business Efficiency category, out of a total of seven awards, went to the Chabot Space & Science Center, the Amtrak Operations & Maintenance Facility and Kaiser Foundation Health Plan. A fourth Oakland company, GSC Logistics, received an Honorable Mention. The Business Efficiency Awards honor organizations that have not only cut waste significantly, but also streamlined their operations in the process, often realizing significant financial cost savings. A well loved and respected educational institution, Chabot Space & Science Center has developed earth-focused activities that include teaching waste reduction concepts in their classes, composting food scraps, and encouraging children to pack zero waste lunches. Chabot's fun and inspiring programs reach thousands of youth and instill values around resource efficiency to our future workforce, while their comprehensive recycling programs keep over 13 tons of material out of the landfill each year. Also right on track with their efficiency initiatives is the Amtrak Operations & Maintenance Facility in Oakland, which maintains 18 locomotives and 83 passenger cars. The facility recycles more than 58 tons of maintenance materials each year, in addition to recyclables collected from passengers. They also compost an impressive 20 tons of food scraps annually, and prevent hazardous waste by laundering oily rags – instead of throwing them away. An innovative “Blue Glove Pledge” has actively engaged staff to help keep disposable gloves from contaminating the recycling. Another industry increasingly embracing “lean and green” operations is healthcare. Kaiser Permanente is not just telling their members to “Thrive,” but the Kaiser Foundation Health Plan division in Oakland can boast of their thriving sustainability efforts. This regional headquarters and administrative center for Kaiser diverts almost half of its waste with the help of 1,400 employees who ▼ The staff at the Amtrak recycle paper and cardboard and Operations & Maintenance compost paper towels. Taking efforts Facility in Oakland, one of the even further, the facility is currently 2011 StopWaste Partnership rolling out food scrap recycling to the Business Efficiency Award winners.

cafeteria and kitchenettes. ▲ StopWaste award winner Chabot Space & Science Center Congratulations to all of this year’s inspires thousands of kids to reduce winners! To read their full stories, visit waste with their innovative Zero www.StopWastePartnership.Org and Waste Lunch program. click on “Featured Success Stories.” We hope these champions of efficiency inspire you to examine your own operations for waste reduction opportunities. Will your business be recognized in next year’s StopWaste awards? ■

Justin Lehrer is a program manager at StopWaste.Org. For more information about the StopWaste Partnership and how their free services and resources can help your business improve efficiency, visit www.StopWastePartnership.Org or email Partnership@ StopWaste.Org.

10 | OBR Oakland Business Review |

– continued on page 23


Wining & Dining in Oakland

> The holidays are here again – Let the ‘wining’ begin by Kevin Brown

Once again the holidays have arrived (it keeps coming faster every year, doesn’t it?) and the pressure is on to get gifts purchased, the house decorated, meals planned, visits to family and friends, and final projects for the year completed. I’m getting tired just thinking about it. Last year I suggested that you depart from the road well traveled and let your palate experience things you had not tried before. This year I will still suggest the same thing, but as Chef Emeril Lagasse likes to say, “Let’s kick it up a notch!” This year, as you plan meals or visits with family and friends, make your wine choices as free wheeling and experimental as possible. Like Christmas with lots of wrapped gifts that you have no idea what’s inside, let your imagination run wild with possibilities of pairings. Try and pick wines from several different categories to match with a course or meal. Pick a sparkling wine, a crisp white wine, a rich full-bodied white, a lightstyled red, a robust full-bodied red, and don’t forget dessert wines. As you look at the myriad of options available to you, let go of conventional pairings and make your meal an adventure. The most important thing to know about wine is that it’s very personal as to what you like and what you don’t. Ratings are not necessarily a good indication of a wine that you will like, but it does tell you that others have thought highly of it so it is at least worth a try. If you find that your taste likes and dislikes are similar to a wine writer’s, then ratings can be a guide – but you can never go wrong with your own taste buds. Trust your own palate! The more things you try, the more you will discover those attributes of wine that you like and those that you don’t, and the more comfortable you will become in making selections to go with your meals. There is no better way to “educate” your palate than to visit the tasting

rooms of the East Bay wineries. There are more than 20 different wineries in the East Bay, and they offer an amazing diversity of wines for you to experience. Last year, for example, I mentioned that there were more than 20 different Zinfandels alone to try from the East Bay Vintners. This year, that number has almost doubled. And that’s just Zinfandel. There are over 20 other varietals to choose from with numerous examples from the different wineries – that’s right, over 200 different wines all for your tasting and pairing pleasure! All right in your own back yard. And these offerings are world class in quality. The great part is that you get to experience a varietal like Zinfandel in depth and in lots of different styles. From soft and supple to dark and brooding, there are a remarkable variety of flavor profiles for you to try and enjoy. Maybe you want your wine pairings to be in a single varietal but from several different producers. You will get to see how different “artists” interpret the same varietal. And the one thing you can count on is that each of the winemakers will have their own idea of what that wine should taste like. The fun part is the tasting! Find that new wine that you can share with your family and friends as your new “discovery.” The chances are you will also get to meet the owners and winemakers at the East Bay Vintners tasting rooms since most are very hands-on and usually there minding the store. So not only will you get to taste, but also ask questions and get the story behind the wines. You will also be meeting some of your neighbors and making new friends. What better way to enjoy the holidays than visiting with friends old and new over a glass of wine. So this year, make it an East Bay holiday. Not only will you be supporting local businesses, but you’ll be discovering the wonderful wineries that are part of the wine country that’s in your own backyard. ■ Kevin Brown is owner/winemaker at R&B Cellars in Alameda.

> This year, make it an East Bay holiday. Not only will you be supporting local businesses, but you’ll be discovering the more than 20 wonderful wineries that are part of the wine country that’s in your own backyard.

December 2011 / January 2012 | 11


Wining & Dining in Oakland

> Piedmont Grocery –

The store offered a daily delivery service until 1965 – originally by horse-drawn wagons.

Now in its 109th year

Grocery Co. remains a place where relationships are established and cherished. Many customers have shopped there for decades and many of Piedmont Grocery’s employees have worked there for just as long. It is a place where friends and neighbors greet each other while picking up their holiday turkey and children and grandchildren of customers grow up before our eyes. Today in its 109th year, the store has been updated, but the philosophy of offering the finest foods and best service to customers and the community remains the same. Piedmont Grocery Co. features a full-service butcher shop, and

Founded by Herman and Eugenia Sack, Piedmont Grocery Co. opened its doors for business in 1902. Located at the corner of 41st Street and Piedmont Avenue, the business was moved after a fire destroyed it in 1904 and rebuilt one block down by the Key Train station at the end of the San Francisco line where it remains to this day. In the beginning, Piedmont Grocery Co. meant sawdust-covered floors, scattered pickle barrels and wooden crates displaying “good things to eat” with unparalleled service. Through earthquakes, fires, economic highs and lows, Piedmont Grocery Co. has remained consistent with its promise to deliver quality foods with outstanding personal service that has endeared the store to generation after generation. In the early days, clerks would pull items from the shelves at customer request. Dorothy Rickard, Piedmont resident and daughter of H.Sack, Herman’s son who ran the business until 1956, recalls the old store, “You just ask for it, and they bring it to you.” Soon H.Sack established Piedmont Grocery Co. as one of the first self-service grocery stores in town. The company even offered a daily delivery service until 1965 – originally by horse-drawn wagons, then by a fleet of green trucks which oftentimes delivered the mail along with the groceries. Piedmont Grocery Co. was purchased from the Sack family in 1957 by Charles Larson who, as an ambitious 16-year-old in 1920, started work at Piedmont Grocery Co. as a delivery driver. Charles worked his way up to buyer and store manager and eventually to general manager before becoming president and owner. Piedmont Grocery Co. is currently owned by Charles’ son David Larson. In this time of hurried pace and electronic interaction, Piedmont

▲ The meat counter at Piedmont Grocery.

exceptional selection of gourmet, specialty and prepared foods, hard-to-find cooking ingredients, and an outstanding wine and liquor department, making Piedmont Grocery Co. a popular destination for local residents and visitors alike. ■

> Never go hungry with Oakland’s diverse culinary offerings From Ethiopian to Korean to Caribbean, Oakland is known to have an eclectic mix of cuisine. It’s no surprise, as the city has been deemed one of the most diverse in the country. Think of dining out in Oakland as an adventure – you will always be pleasantly surprised with something on the menu that you probably never expected to try. In addition to the array of foods from different cultures,

Oakland chefs are also known for mixing unique ingredients to create innovative flavors. Many restaurants utilize sustainable, seasonal ingredients, developing daily and monthly menus with the freshest products from the farmers market. In Oakland’s Chinatown, you won’t just find Chinese dishes. As one of the largest Pan-Asian communities in the United States, Chinatown includes a mix of Vietnamese, Korean and Japanese foods. You can spend weeks exploring each bakery and restaurant and still find new things to try. The Koreatown-Northgate district, bordering Uptown and Temescal, is of course known for its Korean delicacies, but that’s not all. Phat Matt’s BBQ is a favorite American eatery, and the area is also filled with Middle Eastern foods. Head to Temescal and you'll find a little bit of everything – Japanese, Ethiopian, Burmese, Southern and Spanish Tapas, all within a few blocks radius. This neighborhood continues to thrive as a “foodie” destination, with publications such as Sunset magazine and the Wall Street Journal taking notice of the restaurants. Great cultural cuisines are not limited to these neighborhoods – Fruitvale, Grand Lake, Jack London Square, Montclair, Old Oakland, Piedmont Avenue, Rockridge, Uptown and West Oakland are filled with a multitude of exciting restaurants. Take advantage of the plethora of options that have been creating so much buzz. For more information, see, or check out Twitter @visitoakland and on Facebook at ■

12 | OBR Oakland Business Review |


Wining & Dining in Oakland

> Celebrate great food during the

> Fountain Café a local favorite

2nd annual Oakland Restaurant Week

in City Center

As the new year approaches and the holidays come to an end, get out of the kitchen and head to Oakland’s delicious restaurants during Oakland Restaurant Week, coming Jan. 20-29. Visit Oakland, the city’s Convention and Visitors Bureau, will host the 2nd annual event, held in correlation with Visit California’s Restaurant Month. Several of Oakland’s top restaurants will feature special prix fixe, multi-course menus at set prices of $20, $30 and $40. Participating restaurants are located throughout Oakland in popular visitor and residential neighborhoods such as Grand Lake, Jack London Square, Montclair Village, Old Oakland, Rockridge and Uptown. Details can be found at The ten-day event is an excellent opportunity for visitors to get a taste of Oakland’s diverse restaurants, recognized as being some of the most innovative in the country. It’s also an important time for locals to show support for the community, since January is notoriously a slow time for dining and retail. Last year, 90 percent of the participating restaurants said that their business increased during Restaurant Week. Fifty-four percent of the restaurants saw a 10-25 percent increase, while 18 percent said that they saw a 26-50 percent increase. All of the restaurants who participated said they would definitely be interested again this year. The media took notice of Oakland’s first Restaurant Week last year, and Oakland’s culinary scene has continued to garner attention from publications and blogs such as Travel + Leisure, the New York Times, the Boston Globe, the Wall Street Journal, National Geographic Traveler,, and InsideScoop SF. So far, the participants for the 2nd annual Restaurant Week include:

Oakland’s City Center has always been a popular lunch spot for the local workforce with a number of excellent eateries. And since 1995, Fountain Café has anchored that local food scene, becoming popular not only as a lunch spot, but as a caterer for area businesses. Owned and operated by brothers Elias and Samer Salameh, Fountain Café is a family business with a metropolitan flare, and is located just steps away from the City Center/12th Street BART station. The brothers have joined forces and dedicated their knowledge and culinary backgrounds to offer lunchtime delicacies. The atmosphere is busy, energetic and dynamic, filled with hungry patrons satisfying their appetite. “We have a unique concept,” says Elias Salameh, president and chief executive officer in charge of kitchen operations, catering and menu planning. “Make your own plate the way you like it.” That’s because Fountain Café offers an exceptional variety of healthy, seasonal choices. Food ranges from the well stocked and colorful salad bar to a hot buffet station with daily gourmet specials that range from panko crusted fish filet and roasted chicken to potatoes au gratin, pasta de giorno, Yankee pot roast

• Amba • B Restaurant • Bay Wolf • Bellanico • Bocanova • Brown Sugar Kitchen • Camino • ChopBar • Cosecha • Disco Volante • Encuentro

• Flora

• Paragon Cafe at the Claremont Hotel Club & Spa

• The Grand Tavern • Hudson

• Picán

• iSquared

• Scott’s Seafood Grill & Bar

• Lake Chalet • Level Two at the Oakland Marriott City Center

• Seison • Sidebar

• Marzano

• Spice Monkey

• Mezze

• Tamarindo Antojeria

• Montclair Bistro

• The Trappist

• Ozumo

• YaYu • Yoshi’s Jazz Club

Consider trying a few restaurants or inviting some friends into town for the event. Make a weekend out of it and stay at one of Oakland’s affordable and convenient hotels, found at For more information on Restaurant Week, check Visit Oakland’s Restaurant Week page at, as well as the Twitter feed @visitoakland and on Facebook at For additional questions, contact Visit Oakland at (510) 839-9000. ■

▲ Elias (left) and Samer Salameh, and southern barbecue pulled pork. owners of Fountain Café. Not in the mood for salad or a hot entrée? “You have to visit our deli for a sandwich that you would appreciate,” says Samer, who manages the deli and the front of the house operation. The deli comes complete with everything from house roasted turkey sandwiches, an American favorite, to European delights such as fresh mozzarella and pesto sandwiches on focaccia bread and chicken cordon bleu. With dedication to quality and attention to detail, Fountain Café offers a variety of catering options for any corporate event and office meeting. Morning orders range from coffee and tea service to house baked muffins, scones, danish and fresh fruit platters. The lunch menu includes exceptional cookies and brownies. For more information, visit or call (510) 451-6400. ■

> Picán honored Pican, located at 2295 Broadway in Oakland’s Uptown District, is among a select group of East Bay restaurants to receive the prestigious and internationally acclaimed Michelin Guide “Bib Gourmand” award. It’s the second such award in as many years for Picán. The restaurant has also been recognized in Zagat as being among the top “Southern / Creole / Cajun” restaurants, and Diablo magazine gave it a nod under “ones to watch” in its annual food issue. Picán is owned and operated by Michael LeBlanc, the co-chair of the Chamber’s Oakland Restaurant Association. ■

> A gift from Kincaid’s Now through Dec. 31, when you purchase $100 worth of gift cards at Kincaid’s, located at Jack London Square, you’ll receive a $20 bonus card as a gift to you. Purchased cards can be used at any Restaurants Unlimited location and do not expire. For more information, call Kincaid’s at (510) 835-8600 or visit ■

Salad Bar • Hot Bar Delicatessen • Catering Office Parties • Corporate Events In the Heart of City Center Phone: (510) 451-6400 Fax: (510) 451-5480

December 2011 / January 2012 | 13


Wining & Dining in Oakland

> Guide to Chamber member restaurants and caterers DINE AT THESE OUTSTANDING CHAMBER MEMBER RESTAURANTS AIRPORT / COLISEUM AREA Amelia’s (within Hilton Oakland Airport)

One Hegenberger Road Oakland, CA 94621 (510) 635-5000 Buttercup Grill & Bar 1000 Cotton St. Oakland, CA 94606 (510) 535-1640 Diamond Sports Bar (within Holiday Inn – Oakland Airport)

77 Hegenberger Road Oakland, CA 94621 (510) 638-7777 Francesco’s Restaurant 8520 Pardee Drive Oakland, CA 94621 (510) 569-0653 Sports Edition Bar

Lake Chalet Seafood Bar & Grill 1520 Lakeside Drive Oakland, CA 94612 (510) 208-5253

Il Pescatore 57 Jack London Square Oakland, CA 94607 (510) 465-2188

San Francisco Soup Company 1300 Clay St. Oakland, CA 94612 (510) 763-7687

It’s A Grind Coffee House 555 12th St., Suite 105 Oakland, CA 94607 (510) 268-9902

Specialty’s Cafe & Bakery 155 Grand Ave. Oakland, CA 94612 (415) 362-2052

Kincaid’s Bayhouse 1 Franklin St. Oakland, CA 94607 (510) 835-8600

Tay Ho “West Lake” Restaurant 344 B 12th St. Oakland, CA 94607 (510) 836-6388

Miss Pearl’s Jam House (within Waterfront Hotel) One Broadway Oakland, CA 94607 (510) 444-7171

Terrace Room at Lake Merritt 1800 Madison St. Oakland, CA 94612 (510) 832-2300 Uncle Willie’s BBQ & Fish 614 14th St. Oakland, CA 94612 (510) 465-9200

(within Hilton Oakland Airport)

One Hegenberger Road Oakland, CA 94621 (510) 635-5000 Wing Town Cafe, Inc. 1462 High St Oakland, CA 94601 (510) 842-8315 DOWNTOWN City Center Grill (within Oakland Marriott City Center)

1001 Broadway Oakland, CA 94607 (510) 451-4000 Fountain Café 499 14th St., Suite 125 Oakland, CA 94612 (510) 451-6400

JACK LONDON SQUARE & VICINITY Buttercup Kitchen – Family Restaurant 229 Broadway Oakland, CA 94607 (510) 444-2976

Numi Tea Garden 2230 Livingston St. Oakland, CA 94606 (877) 686-4832 Scott’s Seafood Grill & Bar 2 Broadway Oakland, CA 94607 (510) 444-3456 MONTCLAIR Monaghan’s on the Hill 2820 Mountain Blvd. Oakland, CA 94602 (510) 482-2500

Chop Bar 247 4th St., #111 Oakland, CA 94607 (510) 834-2467

OLD OAKLAND B Restaurant 499 9th St. Oakland, CA 94607 (510) 251-8770

Home of Chicken and Waffles Restaurant & Bar 444 Embarcadero West. Oakland, CA 94607 (510) 836-4446

Levende East / Liege Spirits Lounge 827 Washington St. Oakland, CA 94607 (510) 835-5585 Pacific Coast Brewing Co. 906 Washington St. Oakland, CA 94607 (510) 836-2739 ROCKRIDGE À Côté 5478 College Ave. Oakland, CA 94618 (510) 655-6469

UPTOWN Ozumo Oakland, LLC 2251 Broadway Oakland, CA 94612 (510) 286-9866 Picán 2295 Broadway Oakland, CA 94612 (510) 834-1000 NEARBY Café Aquarius 1298 65th St. Emeryville, CA 94608 (510) 655-2782 Meritage (within Claremont Resort & Spa) 41 Tunnel Road Berkeley, CA 94705 (510) 843-3000 Panera Bread Bakery Café 2249 South Shore Center Drive Alameda, CA 94501 (925) 408-7713 Paragon (within Claremont Resort & Spa) 41 Tunnel Road

Berkeley, CA 94705 (510) 843-3000 USE THESE CHAMBER MEMBERS FOR YOUR CATERING NEEDS Blue Heron Catering, Inc. 3100 35th Ave. Oakland, CA 94619 (510) 533-0781 Bon Appetit Catering 1547 Lakeside Drive Oakland, CA 94612 (510) 891-2304 Fountain Cafe 499 14th St., Suite 125 Oakland, CA 94612 (510) 451-6400 Miraglia Catering & Event Planning 2096 Burroughs Ave. San Leandro, CA 94577 (510) 483-5210 Red Door Chefs and Producers 248 Third St., #843 Oakland, CA 94607 (510) 459-6212 ■

14 | OBR Oakland Business Review |


Wining & Dining in Oakland ▲

> Food Bank needs

(left) Two young Food Bank supporters got the chance to meet Oakland A’s stars Tyson Ross (left) and Jemile Weeks after the players donated food during a recent drive at the Food Bank.

help to keep pace with growing needs

▼ (bottom left) Food Bank Executive Director Suzan Bateson (center) thanks Oakland Raiders (left to right) Manase Tonga, Terrelle Pryor, Rock Cartwright and Marcel Reece (with his wife Tera) after the players helped sort and package food for families in need this holiday season.

As the year draws to a close, our thoughts often turn to the comforts of home, family and food. At the Alameda County Community Food Bank, more than 65 staff and thousands of volunteers are working hard to ensure that no one goes hungry in our neighborhoods – but they need your help to do it. Last November, the Food Bank referred 3,466 households to emergency food in their neighborhoods – then the highest ever – but this wasn’t unexpected, as the holidays are a tough time for families in need. But by April, that record was broken – then subsequently again in July and August. Although the holidays have historically been the Food Bank’s busiest time, this September Food Bank staff and volunteers helped a record-shattering 3,770 families find a food pantry or soup kitchen to get them through the month – or even just through the evening. “Families are now lining up for food up to three hours before their neighborhood pantry opens. Hundreds of families calling to our helpline each month are reaching out to us for the first time,” said the Food Bank’s executive director, Suzan Bateson. “We’re hearing from many families where both parents are working fulltime, but it’s not enough to cover rent, utilities and food – and the food budget is the first place they can cut. We’re hearing from people who’ve moved in with relatives and friends to share expenses, but even that’s no longer enough to make ends meet.”

Meanwhile, despite strong partnerships with community groups, local media and businesses large and small, collections from food-drive barrels throughout the county are about the same as they were last year. “We’re working hard to keep up,” said Bateson. “We simply need more support from our community to keep pace with the need.” This year, the Food Bank opened a one-acre addition to its warehouse to accommodate more volunteers who are responsible for sorting and packaging the 22 million of pounds of food the Food Bank will distribute this year. More than half that amount is farm-fresh produce. Bateson said that with volunteer shifts already filled through the end of the year, the best way for people to make an impact is through financial contributions. “For every $1 donated, we distribute $5 worth of food,” Bateson said. “That’s a fantastic return on your investment, and one of the most efficient ways to get healthy, high-quality food to those who need it most.” She added, “Hunger doesn’t end after the holidays. We’re in need of support – food donations, financial contributions and volunteers – year-round.” The Alameda County Community Food Bank relies almost entirely on contributions from the local community. “If you’re reading this, we need your support” said Bateson. To donate, start a food drive, or find out more about how to help the Food Bank, visit or call (510) 635-3663. Check donations can be mailed to P.O. Box 2599, Oakland, CA 94614. ■

> Recipe for the holidays – Grilled mushroom and sausage stuffing Ingredients 6 oz. butter 1 lb. Italian sausage, cut into small pieces 2 c. diced onion 1 cup peeled and diced carrot 1 cut diced celery 6 large Portobello mushroom caps, grilled and diced 4 c. chicken stock 4 c. fresh country bread cubes, crust removed and lightly toasted 1 tbsp. chopped fresh thyme 1 tbsp. chopped fresh sage Salt and pepper to taste 2 tbsp. butter Directions • Preheat oven to 350 degrees. • Butter an 8” x 12” baking dish. • In a large sauce pot over medium high heat, melt the butter and cook the sausage, onions, carrots and celery in the butter until the sausage is browed and the vegetables are tender. • Add the mushrooms and cook for another 5 minutes • Add the stock, turn up heat to high and bring to a boil. Shut off. • Transfer vegetables and sausage mixture to a medium-sized mixing bowl. Fold in bread cubes and herbs. Season to taste. • Transfer to the prepared baking dish. Bake uncovered for 20 minutes. ■ Recipe courtesy of Rosenblum Cellars.

December 2011 / January 2012 | 15

Come to “Inside Oakland Breakfast Forum” and hear from people who affect the policies and progress of the city in which we live and do business.

January 27 | 8:30 – 10 a.m. Come to “Inside Oakland Breakfast Forum” and hear from people who affect the policies and progress of the city in which we live and do business. JOIN Chamber members for this informative breakfast at the Oakland Chamber of Commerce, 475 14th Street. This event is free to Chamber members and $10.00 for nonmembers. To attend, you must RSVP by Wednesday, January 25. VISIT OUR WEBSITE AND REGISTER ONLINE Have questions? Contact Paul Junge at (510) 874-4817 or at

Public Policy Creating a strong economy

> Chamber guest asks, ‘Is it legal to abolish a Redevelopment Agency?’ by Paul Junge

Helping California cities find solutions to common challenges. That could be the mission statement for the League of California Cities, a group representing nearly 460 of the 480 cities in the state. Eric Figueroa from the League joined Chamber members for our December Inside Oakland breakfast. Figueroa told us the League promotes more local control in California policy making. That is true across a range of topics from pension reform to taxation and redevelopment. Of course questions of local control always include questions not just of how a program should be run, but also where the money to operate the program comes from. An example of the local control and funding is the battle over Redevelopment Agencies. The state ▲ Paul Junge, the Chamber’s director of public policy (right), welcomes guest voted earlier this year to abolish speaker Eric Figueroa to Inside Oakland. Redevelopment but allow a Redevelopment Agency to continue if it shared some tax revenue it receives with the state. The League has sued the state of California to save the Redevelopment Agencies. The California Supreme Court is expected to make a ruling on that lawsuit in January. Figueroa said that the two key questions to be decided are (1) is it legal to abolish redevelopment and (2) is it legal to have a payment structure to keep a Redevelopment Agency in operation? We should know the answer to those questions next month. The Chamber’s next Inside Oakland Breakfast Forum will be held on Friday, Jan. 27 from 8:30 to 10 a.m. Our guest speaker is yet to be determined. ■ Paul Junge is the Chamber’s director of public policy.

> City Hall highlights – 2011 by Paul Junge

2011 has been an eventful year in Oakland city politics. It began with a new Mayor but many of the old challenges. The Mayor and a divided City Council did find a way to close a $58 and $76 million general fund budget shortfall for the next two fiscal years as required by the Charter. The agreement involved some service cuts and concessions from all of the labor groups. The Redevelopment Agency, which funds many city services, faced elimination and its fate, as well as redevelopment programs throughout the state, will be determined by the California Supreme Court next month. The city’s only elected City Attorney, John Russo, left for Alameda and his top deputy, Barbara Parker, was selected by the Council to complete the final 18 months of that term. The election for that job as well as for five of the eight City Council seats will dominate Oakland city politics in the year ahead. The city came together in July to urge the Lawrence Berkeley National Lab to bring its second campus to Oakland – a decision the lab has delayed but hopes to announce some time soon. Whatever the outcome, this effort was a model for disparate parts of our community to come together and promote opportunities for economic growth in Oakland. The national, and state, economy continues to present challenges, and Oakland has felt the hard edge of foreclosures and joblessness. Those hardships and others were among the issues that fueled the Occupy Wall Street movement that spread across the country, including Oakland. Our city worked to find the balance between free speech and public safety. It appears for now that the harmful effects of the overnight camping at Frank Ogawa Plaza are over and we can work towards building a strong and sustainable future for the city. Public safety continues to be a challenge. Public discussions about gang injunctions, curfews and other law enforcement tools dominate the headlines, but there is progress in other areas. Our new Police Chief Howard Jordan, who led the effective removal of the overnight encampments, is working with federal monitors to resolve remaining issues in the Riders case, where a federal judge will make a decision about the future of OPD in January. Opportunities abound as well. The improvements in and around Lake Merritt are near completion and the arts and restaurant scene in Oakland continues to grow and flourish. A new City Administrator, Deanna Santana, and her two top assistants, Scott Johnson and Fred Blackwell, are working with the City Council, the Chamber and – continued on page 23

16 | OBR Oakland Business Review |



> Samuel Merritt names research room after biomechanical pioneer by Elizabeth Valente Samuel Merritt University (SMU), a health sciences institution based in Oakland, has received a matching grant from Root Laboratory, Inc., a Northern California company known in the podiatric medicine profession for its development and manufacture of prescription foot “orthoses.” The matching grant from Root Lab has made possible the renovation and technological upgrade of the Motion Analysis and Research Center (MARC) lab at the university’s Oakland campus. A research room inside the lab, located in the atrium of the Health Education Center, will be named after Merton L. Root, DPM. Dr. Root is known as a biomechanical pioneer and graduated from the California College of Podiatric Medicine (CCPM), now known as the California School of Podiatric Medicine (CSPM), a school within Samuel Merritt University, in 1952. He served as chair of biomechanics at CCPM from 1961 until 1968 when he returned to teaching part-time. In the podiatric medical community Dr. Root is considered one of the most influential educators in the profession. He posed theories that laid the groundwork for the modern orthotic industry, which have helped to advance sports medicine and podiatry in general. In 1977 Dr. Root wrote, “The practitioner must have the best possible basis upon which to make treatment decisions. He cannot wait until sufficient research has been conducted to conclusively prove how the foot functions.” (ref. Normal and Abnormal Function of the Foot). While there has been significant advancement in the understanding of the function of the foot and lower extremity since Dr. Root wrote those words, Cheri Choate, DPM and assistant professor in the Department of Applied Biomechanics in the Doctor of Podiatric

“The practitioner must have the best possible basis upon which to make treatment decisions. He cannot wait until sufficient research has been conducted to conclusively prove how the foot functions.” – Merton L. Root, DPM

Medicine program at CSPM, agrees the need for additional research is as real today as it was in back in 1977. “I am inspired by the dedication of one of the research rooms in the future MARC, to a man who had such an impact biomechanics,” said Dr. Choate. “Just as the pioneers of Root, Weed and Orien developed fundamental concepts in lower extremity biomechanics, this room and the MARC at SMU will act as a vehicle for the development of Lower Extremity Biomechanics at CSPM and SMU. As an alumnus, I am proud of the efforts over many decades, by many individuals to keep Biomechanics part of the core curriculum at CSPM and in the field of Podiatric Medicine/Surgery.” The new state-of-the-art MARC at Samuel Merritt University will be utilized by faculty and students in support of education, research and patient care. In the arenas of education and patient care, the MARC will expand learning and the clinical application of knowledge in both normal and pathological studies of biomechanics, upper and lower body motion analysis, gait and the effect of treatment modalities. The MARC will also greatly expand opportunities for current clinical trials program into areas of corporate product research, product comparison studies and new product trials. “Controversy surrounds many of the theories and treatment modalities employed by modern day practitioners,” explains Jeffrey Root, president, Root Laboratory, Inc. “Sound research is required to pave the path for future practitioners so that they will have an even better basis on which to make their treatment decisions.” The Root Lab gift will match donations made to the university by Dec. 31, 2012 on a one-to-one basis. For every $100 the university raises, Root Lab will contribute $100 (up to a maximum of $12,500) towards naming a research room in Dr. Root’s name. Samuel Merritt University is grateful to all who have donated to the MARC and especially to Root Lab for their support that has enabled the institution to advance its facilities for current and future students. Samuel Merritt University, located in Oakland, has been educating health science practitioners who are committed to making a positive difference in diverse communities since 1909. Nearly 1,400 students are enrolled at SMU, with campuses in Oakland, Sacramento, San Francisco and San Mateo. The university offers an undergraduate degree in nursing; master’s degrees in nursing, occupational therapy, and physician assistant; and doctoral degrees in nursing, physical therapy and podiatric medicine. For more information, visit ■ Elizabeth Valente is the associate director of publications and media relations at Samuel Merritt University.

December 2011 / January 2012 | 17



> Building a great workforce in

> Youth UpRising – Serving

the East Bay – It begins early

the Castlemont community

by Nicole Taylor Editor’s note: Nicole Taylor will be the guest speaker at the first East Bay Women in Business Roundtable luncheon of 2012, which will be held at the Waterfront Hotel in Jack London Square on Friday, Feb. 3. The success of any business lies with the skills of its workforce. I have listened to business leaders over the years, and I know the importance of recruiting and retaining a staff of high performers. With this need in mind – and with an awareness of how the availability of a prepared workforce contributes to the regional economy – we decided to ensure young children acquire the fundamentals of learning so they are successful in the education system and so they emerge ▲ Nicole Taylor (left) of the East Bay Community from the education Foundation and Brian Rogers (right) of the Rogers pipeline ready to get a Family Foundation welcomed Oakland Unified School District Superintendent Dr. Tony Smith to good job. the Chamber’s recent Power Breakfast. The We aim to build a Rogers Family Foundation was honored with a skilled workforce in the Chamber of Commerce “Education First” Award East Bay by building at its 2011 Annual Meeting. successful students. Research indicates that those who succeed in the education system have acquired third-grade literacy and computational skills on time. That means the process of creating successful students must start early by: • Improving child care for infants, toddlers and preschoolers; • Supporting parents as children’s most important teachers and advocates; • Helping children make a transition to kindergarten and become proficient, lifelong readers; and • Enabling children to build a foundation of competence in math and science. In the past three years, we’ve supported a network of nonprofit organizations throughout the East Bay that gets results by focusing on this work. Here in Oakland, we’re committed to strengthening a number of these organizations because of their extraordinary results, because their programs are based on research and modeling, because their management and governance are strong, because they measure and assess their impact, and because the quality of their leadership is evident. Who are they? • Bring Me A Book – Ensures access to children’s books and inspires reading aloud to children by providing libraries of books and workshops in underserved communities. • Brighter Beginnings – Provides home-based support and center-based services promoting healthy births and the healthy development of babies and young children. • Kidango – Provides quality care and education to more than 2,500 young children daily to promote their cognitive, language, physical, and social-emotional development and prepare them for success in school. • Lawrence Hall of Science – A resource for science and mathematics education, including pre-school and early-childhood educators serving children from low-income East Bay families. • Oakland Literacy Coalition – A collaboration of literacy-service providers, schools, businesses and funders to ensure Oakland students are reading at a proficient level by the end of third grade. • Reading Partners – Transforms struggling young readers into confident readers excited about learning through one-on-one instruction by trained volunteers. • Super Stars Literacy – Works with children in grades K-2 with delays in reading-skills development. You can help build the workforce you need by supporting our work – our work with these specific organizations, our other work to create successful students prepared to become one of your valued employees, or our work to assist those with barriers to employment develop job skills. Here are four ways you can help build the workforce you want and need: • Contribute to our Community Leadership Fund that supports our work with the organizations described above. • Contribute to our Oakland Education Fund, which assists the Oakland Unified School District create an excellent education environment. • Contribute to our Workforce Development Fund, which helps create a jobready workforce. • Open your own charitable fund with us and we can help you direct your philanthropy and charitable giving. Join our efforts to build a great workforce. ■ Nicole Taylor is president and chief executive officer of the East Bay Community Foundation.

18 | OBR Oakland Business Review |

Youth UpRising (YU), located at 88th ▲ The Chamber of Commerce recently held an Street and MacArthur Boulevard in East OakAfter Hours Reception at land, grew out of a plea by local youth to pubYouth UpRising in East lic leaders after racial tension erupted into Oakland. Pictured at the community violence. Youth identified poor event, where Chamber education, limited employment President Joe Haraburda opportunities, lack of recreational outlets, presented an Oakland coffee and threat to personal safety as root causes of table book, were (left to the problems they faced. right) Nancy Rodriguez, In response, Youth UpRising was created Youth UpRising’s catering with a mission to transform East Oakland into manager; Manuel Garvin, the a healthy and economically vibrant commuorganization’s social nity by (1) developing the leadership of youth enterprise account manager; who are inter-generationally disconnected; and Clive Harrison, senior (2) helping public and private systems imdirector, social enterprises. prove community and life outcomes; and (3) advancing a community economic development agenda that increases the flow of capital into the community and labor force attachment of residents. YU offers a comprehensive range of integrated services and supports for youth ages 13-24. Its programs fall in four primary areas – Health and Wellness, Career and Education, Arts and Expression, and Civic Engagement. YU realized early on that youth lacked the skills and training necessary to compete in the labor market. In response, the organization created a social enterprise hub with four youth-led businesses that provide industry-specific job training in highgrowth sectors that facilitate youth’s transition into the workforce. While building its institutional capacity to serve youth, Youth UpRising made a commitment, through its systems change and community development efforts, to reform the service delivery and resource allocation of public systems and the conditions of the environments that impact their lives. YU builds on these concepts by applying them to the Castlemont community where the demand for all of the essential elements of community life – education, recreation, employment, health, safety – exceeds the supply. In this spirit, YU has developed relationships with an impressive network of youth and community residents, local businesses, public systems, and local universities in helping advance a continuum of place-based solutions to ensure individual and collective growth and financial security through quality education, housing, community assets, business ownership and career opportunities in the Castlemont community. Youth UpRising believes by investing in people, improving the systems that serve people, and bringing resources to the place, community transformation is possible. ■



> Wells Fargo presents $245,000 in education grants to East Bay school foundations Wells Fargo recently made this holiday season brighter for 17 different East Bay school foundations at an event held at the Alameda County Office of Education. Micky Randhawa, president of Wells Fargo’s East Bay market, presented $245,000 in grants to 17 school foundation representatives. “By providing funding to school foundations, parents and foundation leaders can address schools’ most pressing needs,” said Randhawa. “What is most important is ▲ Dan Quigley (left), executive director of the that the funds go where it Oakland Schools Foundation, thanks Micky matters the most – right Randhawa, president of Wells Fargo’s East Bay into the classrooms with the market, for a $50,000 grant that will benefit students.” Oakland students. Randhawa says the company has a long-standing commitment to local education. In November 2011, Wells Fargo announced $1 million in new grants to benefit education throughout the Bay Area. Including the $1 million, Wells Fargo has donated more than $13.3 million to schools and nonprofit organizations for educational purposes in the Bay Area since 2009. The grants presented at the event are designated to benefit select school districts with significant enrollment from students coming from low-tomoderate income families. Dan Quigley, executive director of the Oakland Schools Foundation, was excited to accept a check for $50,000. He said the funds donated last year helped to hire staff that provide direct services to students. This year’s grant will help expand collaboration with the Oakland Unified School District to provide full-service community schools. “It means making schools a hub for services needed for kids to succeed – health, nutrition and

after-school programs,” Quigley said. Genevieve Getman-Sowa, board member of the Livermore Valley Education Foundation, was also ecstatic about the grant. “The grant money Wells Fargo donated to us last year went a long way to help us fund a music program for fifth graders in our schools,” said Getman-Sowa. She said she already had plans for this year’s allocation to help fund its Reach for the Stars fundraising event. Money raised will be used to fund the three “A’s” – academics, arts and athletics. Wells Fargo is a top corporate philanthropist in the country and locally. For 2010, the company was ranked as the number three largest cash donor in the country, according to The Chronicle of Philanthropy. Last year the company donated more than $20.7 million to nonprofits and schools in the Bay Area. ■

> Habitat for Humanity announces Wells Fargo grant Habitat for Humanity Greater San Francisco and Habitat for Humanity East Bay recently announced that Wells Fargo & Company has made a grant in the amount of $975,000 and more than 1,450 of volunteer hours to support local families, stabilize Bay Area neighborhoods and create more sustainable and affordable housing in local communities.

This is the single largest corporate gift in Habitat’s combined 24 years of service in the Bay Area. The grant is made possible through funding provided by the Wells Fargo Housing Foundation as well as team member volunteerism. Wells Fargo is participating in several such efforts across the country this year. Its Housing Foundation supports local neighborhood revitalization initiatives, enabling Habitat for Humanity Greater San Francisco and Habitat for Humanity East Bay to construct, repair and rehabilitate affordable housing with low-income families in markets hit hard by foreclosures. “Wells Fargo has supported Habitat’s affordable housing work for nearly 20 years, which is one example of our focus on doing what’s right for our communities,” said Tracy Curtis, president of Wells Fargo’s San Francisco Market. “Together we have made a difference with low-income families who now have homes in which they can take great pride – a mission that Wells Fargo has always deemed critically important.” “Wells Fargo is proud to demonstrate our commitment to help families achieve and sustain the dream of homeownership by providing funds and volunteer hours to Habitat for Humanity,” said Micky Randhawa, president of Wells Fargo’s East Bay Market. “We are glad to have the opportunity to continue to strengthen our local communities where our customers and team members work, live and raise their families.” Donation to ‘Friends of Oakley’ Wells Fargo has announced a $4,000 donation to the Friends of Oakley, a nonprofit association which was recently burglarized of $4,000 worth of toys and food intended for 300 families, including 840 children, in Eastern Contra Costa County. “When I learned about the burglary of toys and food, I was touched,” said Bob Ceglio, president of Wells Fargo’s Mount Diablo market. “I understand that many people were involved in collecting items, donating items, and even making homemade blankets. I am glad that we are able to help Friends of Oakley share some holiday warmth to families in need.” For more information, visit ■

> Earn a medical degree at Everest College

A ribbon cutting ceremony was recently held at Everest College in Hayward when it joined the Chamber of Commerce as a new member. Everest College has many campuses across the country, and each school offers students an opportunity to earn their degree in a variety of popular fields. In Hayward, at the 22336 Main Street campus, the curriculum has a theme of medicine – where students can receive degrees in medical administrative assistant, medical assistant, medical insurance billing and coding, and massage therapy. Hands-on training is also an important component of an Everest College education. At the ribbon cutting above, Darryl Richardson, director of career services (holding the scissors), welcomes instructors as well as Chamber Ambassadors. For more information, call (510) 582-9500. ■

December 2011 / January 2012 | 19



> ECCO! comes to Oakland

> Bread Project provides baked

The College and Career Readiness office has announced that it is partnering with Bloom Associates, MDRC and the Career Academies Project to bring ECCO! (Exploring College and Career Options) to Oakland. This project seeks to strengthen the capacity of career academies and pathways to offer quality work-based learning and college preparation experiences to help more students become engaged in high school, make informed choices about their futures, and learn the skills they need to succeed in career and post-secondary education. During its first year in the district, ECCO! will serve five career pathways in the Oakland Unified School District (OUSD) and will expand to even more in the following years. Students will: • Learn about college and career options. • Make connections between what they learn in the classroom and college and careers. • Understand and practice “21st Century Skills.” • Stay in high school and graduate with clear plans to pursue college or career. Using the quality curriculum from the Career Academies Project paired with generous partners across the Bay Area, students will participate in the following ECCO! components: • Career exploration visit. Students will tour a workplace and interact with employees in small groups. During the visits students will expand their awareness of careers and work environments, and make connections between what is learned at school and what is expected in the workplace. • College readiness. The goal is to inform all students about post-secondary education options and prepare them with the skills and knowledge they need to enroll in and succeed in college. • Internships. ECCO! students will participate in a high quality internship either during the summer between junior and senior year or during their senior year. Students will participate in weekly classroom seminars. Business community members interested in partnering with the ECCO! should contact the College and Career Readiness Office at (510) 273-2360. ■

goods for students

> A tremendous


The Oakland Unified School District (OUSD) recently extended its leadership position in providing on-site health care services to students when it celebrated the grand opening of a school-based health center at the Havenscourt Campus, home to Coliseum College Preparatory Academy (CCPA) and Roots International. Operated by La Clínica de La Raza, Inc., the School-Based Health Center (SBHC) will provide medical care, mental health, dental health, nutrition services and health education. Since 1971, La Clínica has been dedicated to improving the quality of life in the diverse communities it serves. The Havenscourt center will offer youth development opportunities for students to become peer educators and youth leaders on campus. More than 200 youth will be served during the first year of operation, a critical sign of progress in a neighborhood beset by crime and some of the most negative health indicators in the city. ■

> Holy Names to host Hungarian festival In honor of Franz Liszt’s 200th birthday, Holy Names University will hold a Hungarian Music Festival on Saturday, Jan. 28 from 1 to 9 p.m. Attend an afternoon concert from 1 to 6 p.m., an evening concert from 7:30 to 9 p.m., a banquet of Hungarian good, or indulge in all of the events for a full day of festive activities. The concerts include performances by faculty, students and graduates of Holy Names’ Music Department and Preparatory Music Department. The festivities will be held at the school’s Valley Center for the Performing Arts on campus at 3500 Mountain Blvd. in Oakland. For information, call (510) 436-1404 or visit ■

20 | OBR Oakland Business Review |

The Bread Project has announced bakery contracts and catering agreements with the Oakland and Berkeley unified school districts and a number of other nonprofits, according to executive director John Lee.

“As a nonprofit ourselves,” notes Lee, “we are pleased to be able to provide fresh, nutritious and delicious products and meals to school programs and other organizations at an affordable price. In addition, these contracts provide our trainees with actual on-the-job training.” According to Jesper Jensen, director of bakery operations, “Our goal is to not only simulate the actual environment of the workplace, but more specifically, be a workplace where our trainees can receive the satisfaction of actually preparing foods that others will eat.” Programs that receive Bread Project baked goods include the school meal programs at both school districts, which receive such items as vegan applesauce muffins, fresh-baked banana bread and cookies. Bread Project is also the primary provider of bread products to Project Open Hand’s grocery centers in Oakland and San Francisco. “When the Bread Project first contacted me, I couldn’t believe my good luck,” says Dan Schuman, director of operations at Project Open Hand. “A nonprofit that makes delicious, healthy bread and provides vital job-training to people in need? Where do I sign up? The relationship between our two organizations is the very definition of a win-win: our clients get wholesome, tasty bread at a price that I can live with and our purchases support another mission-based organization.” Founded in 2000, the Bread Project empowers individuals with limited resources on their path to self-sufficiency through skills instruction, on-the-job training in its bakery and kitchen, and assistance with establishing a career in the food industry. For more information, visit ■

> Work for hire: Who really owns

> How’s this for relaxation?

‘your’ copyright? by Eugene Pak

One misconception business owners have is

Eugene Pak

that anything created by an independent or “freelance” contractor for their business is a “work for hire” under copyright law. But the law is not so clear-cut. For example, if you retain a software programmer to write specialized accounting computer software for your business, an artist to create a logo for your business, or an advertising consultant to create marketing text or slogans, you do not necessarily have ownership rights in the software, logo, or marketing materials merely because you hired the contractor or consultant.

As to works created by independent contractors, such as consultants or freelance artists, the “work for hire” doctrine only applies to certain types of works under federal law, and these works do not necessarily include software or logos. As to independent contractors, a “work for hire” is defined in the Copyright Act (15 U.S.C. § 101) as “a work specially ordered or commissioned for use as a contribution to a collective work, as a part of a motion picture or other audiovisual work, as a translation, as a supplementary work, as a compilation, as an instructional text, as a test, as answer material for a test, or as an atlas.” These are the only types of works created by independent contractors that can constitute “works for hire.” Merely calling something a “work for hire” in an agreement does not make it so, unless it falls within these specified categories of works. In addition, to constitute a “work for hire,” the parties must have an express written agreement to this effect, signed by both parties. While some software programs may be considered an “audiovisual work,” other software programs would not. And whether a graphic logo is covered or not could depend on how it is used. Consequently, business owners who hire independent contractors should make sure they have written agreements specifying that the works created are “works for hire” (assuming they fall within the specified categories listed above) and also require contractors to assign ownership of any works to the employer.1 Notably, an assignment of copyright ownership must be in writing; an oral agreement is not sufficient to transfer copyright ownership. (15 U.S.C. § 204). As more and more businesses retain independent contractors and consultants, rather than hiring fulltime and part-time employees, they should pay special attention to this issue. The consequences of failing to take these steps can be very problematic, particularly if there is a dispute over payment or work quality with the contractor or consultant. That said, a business may still be able to use a work created by a contractor, even if the business does not own the copyright in the work, under the theory that there is an implied license granted from the contractor to the business. In contrast to works created by independent contractors, if an employee creates a work within the scope of his or her employment, then the work is considered to be a “work for hire” and is owned by the employer, by operation of law. Still, the more cautious business owners will have employees sign employment agreements that transfer ownership of works, ideas, inventions, and other items conceived in connection with their employment with the employer. Copyright law only protects the expression of an idea or concept, in a tangible form, and does not protect the idea itself. Because many employees often work from home or off-site, and at odd hours, it can be unclear if a concept or idea conceived by an employee was in the course of his or her employment. The toymaker Mattel, Inc., maker of the Barbie dolls, faced this situation recently in a highly publicized case involving the competing Bratz dolls made by MGA Entertainment. A former employee of Mattel had conceived the idea of the Bratz dolls while still employed by Mattel, and claimed to have conceived this idea outside of work hours. When that employee move to MGA and the Bratz dolls became a hit, Mattel sued for infringement, among other claims. Although the employee had signed an employment agreement with Mattel in 1999 in which he agreed to assign all “inventions” he conceived during his employment to Mattel, and “inventions” included “discoveries, improvements, processes, developments, designs, know how, and data computer programs,” an appellate court found that he had not agreed to assign “ideas” to Mattel, even if work-related, and denied Mattel’s claim of ownership. So, business owners should take care to ensure they have written agreements in place giving them ownership and/or rights in the works created by independent contractors, and the relevant ideas conceived by their employees.

A four-hour message? Can you imagine? Yes, it’s true, and it’s available at Melt Massage, which recently celebrated its grand opening for a new location in the Montclair District of Oakland. Melt Massage, which has been in Montclair for ten years, recently opened at 6180 Antioch St., and now offers massages that run from 15 minutes to four hours in length. “We address your stress while you have a relaxing, therapeutic message that’s customized to meet your own unique needs,” says owner Hana Levin (pictured at the ribbon- cutting holding the scissors). For more information or an appointment, call (510) 418-4262 or visit ■

■ Note that under California state law, this may require the employer to have to pay workers’ compensation and unemployment benefits as to the contractor. See California Unemployment Insurance Code §§ 686 and 621(d); California Labor Code §3351.5(c). A business owner should weigh these considerations in deciding how to obtain ownership.


Eugene Pak is a partner at Wendel, Rosen, Black & Dean LLP, where his practice includes counseling and litigation related to clients’ intellectual property. He can be reached at (510) 834-6600 or at

> “Merely calling something a ‘work for hire’ in an agreement does not make it so.” December 2011 / January 2012 | 21


Women in Business


Women defining the East Bay’s future

Nicole Taylor

Teresa Swartz

The East Bay Women in Business Roundtable is proud to present their 2012 speaker series “Women Defining the East Bay’s Future.” Some of the Bay Area’s most influential women are slated to speak. You’ll want to hear about the new trends they’re defining – in business and problemsolving. The speaker series starts Feb. 3, 2012. Mark your calendars now. You won’t want to miss any of these inspiring and forward-thinking speakers. February 3: Nicole Taylor, president and chief executive officer of the East Bay Community Foundation, providing grantmaking, changemaking initiatives, and advocacy on important matters of public policy. The San Francisco Business Times recognizes her as among the Bay Area’s Most Influential Women. “Emerging Economic Trends for Women” April 6: Teresa (Terri) Swartz, Dean of the College of Business and Economics and Professor of Marketing at California State University, East Bay. The San Francisco Business Times once again recognized her as among the Bay Area’s Most Influential Women. ”Transforming Yourself Through Education”

photo: Jeff Watts

Jenny Kassan

June 1: Jenny Kassan, an a^orney specializing in socially responsible ventures, she is the managing director of Katovich & Kassan Law Group. She also co-founded, with John Katovich and Michael Shuman, a consulting business called Cu^ing Edge Capital that focuses on capital raising, community development, and sustainability. “Finding Non-traditional Sources of Capital” August 3: Special Healthcare speaker TBA “Healthy Lifestyle / Healthy Business”

Jessica Steel

October 5: Jessica Steel, Singer-Songwriter, Executive Vice President of Business and Corporate Development at Pandora, she was part of the management team that redefined radio. The internet radio service, recommendation service, and the custodian of the Music Genome Project. The San Francisco Business Times recognizes her as among the Bay Area’s Most Influential Women. “The New Era of Business: Technology Trends” Let the East Bay Women in Business Roundtable inspire you and become a resource for your business, knowledge and interpersonal change. We invite you to connect with us for this series of moving discourse created by a group of women just like you – leaders.

> Oakland schools

– continued from page 1

Dr. Smith relayed some rather frightening statistics – that California is now the 48th state in the country in educational funding, which he called “criminal.” And, he added, “If our children are not well prepared, shame on us.” He called education “a life and death situation for our kids,” and asked businesspeople and their companies to partner with the school district to “invest more deeply in each kid” and show the courage and strength to serve the children. Oakland students, he said, are only as good as their teachers. In order to a^ract the finest teachers, he urged businesspeople to partner in organizing support by calling the East Bay Community Foundation, and reminding everyone that it’s imperative for “Oakland to advocate for Oakland public schools.” Should you wish to help Oakland students and show your support, contact the East Bay Community Foundation at (510) 836-3223. Please note that Nicole Taylor, the organization’s president and chief executive officer, will be the featured speaker of the East Bay Women in Business Roundtable luncheon on Friday, Feb. 3 at the Waterfront Hotel in Jack London Square. ■

22 | OBR Oakland Business Review |

All events held at Chamber offices, 475 14th Street, unless otherwise noted. Call 874-4800 to confirm dates and times. Meetings are open to all Chamber members.

January’s After Five Reception | January 26 at 5:30 p.m. Offices of CB Richard Ellis

East Bay Women in Business | February 3

Economic Development Forum | February 8

Nicole Taylor to speak, “Emerging Economic Trends for Women”

“Corporate Social Responsibility”

Keeping you connected and informed



13 | Annual Holiday Mixer

| 5:30 - 7:30 p.m. E XECUTIVE COM MIT TEE Chair of the Board JOHN NELSON murakami/Nelson Vice Chair MARIO CHIODO Chiodo Art Development Vice Chair SHANNON PEDDER BRAND: CREATIVE DAN COHEN Full Court Press CHARRISA FRANK Swinerton Builders ERIC KISSHAUER Pankow Builders DICK SPEES Honorary Member ZACK WASSERMAN Ex Officio Corporate Counsel Wendel, Rosen, Black & Dean LLP KEN WHITE Fidelity Roof Company MICHAEL ZIEMANN Summit Bank


SOLOMON ETS-HOKIN Colliers International

Claremont Resort & Spa, 41 Tunnel Road, no charge for Chamber members, $15 for non-members

MARK EVERTON Waterfront Hotel / Miss Pearl’s Jam House

14 | Ambassador Committee

ALLYSON FATTORE Sunwest Bank JOHN GOODING The Quadric Group GEORGE GRANGER AT&T STAN HEBERT California State University, East Bay MICHAEL HESTER McGuire & Hester VICTORIA JONES The Clorox Company ISAAC KOS-REED Port of Oakland MICHAEL LEBLANC Picán KEN MAXEY Comcast IKE MMEJE Alta Bates Summit Medical Center NATHAN NAYMAN Visa


NATHANIEL OUBRE, JR. Kaiser Permanente



TERRY BRADY Securitas Security Services

EMILY SHANKS Bank of America

DAVE CANNON Barney & Barney LLC ANA CHRETIEN ABC Security Service KIM DELEVETT Southwest Airlines

DAVID TUCKER Waste Management of Alameda County ELÑORA TENA WEBB, PH.D. Laney College RICHARD WHITE Fitzgerald Abbott & Beardsley LLC

19 | Breakfast at the Chamber

8 | Economic Development Forum | 3 - 4:30 p.m.

| 7:30 - 9 a.m. hosted by Chadwick Spell of Comcast, an update of Chamber activities for prospective, new and long-time members

26 | After Five Reception

| 5:30 - 7:30 p.m. meeting | noon - 1 p.m.

14 | Economic Development Forum | 3 - 4:30 p.m. featuring guest speaker Dan Richard, director, California High Speed Rail Board, discussing “The Practical Realities of Bringing High Speed Rail to California



featuring Solomon Belette, chief executive officer of Catholic Charities of the East Bay, discussing “Corporate Social Responsibility, Stimulating Workforce Development Through Partnerships”

offices of CB Richard Ellis, 500 12th St., Suite 105 in City Center, no charge for Chamber members, $15 for non-members

16 | Breakfast at the Chamber

27 | Inside Oakland Breakfast

an update of Chamber activities for prospective, new and long-time members

Forum | 8:30 - 10 a.m. no charge for Chamber members, $10 for non-members


| 7:30 - 9 a.m.

21 | Nonprofit Roundtable Committee meeting

| 2:30 - 4:30 p.m.


23 | After Five Reception

3 | East Bay Women in Business

| 5:30 - 7:30 p.m.

11 | Ambassador Committee

Roundtable luncheon

meeting | noon - 1 p.m.

| 11:30 a.m. - 1:30 p.m.

no charge for Chamber members, $15 for non-members

11 | Economic Development Forum | 3 - 4:30 p.m. Grace Crunican, general manager of BART, discussing “BART’s 2012 Plan”

11 | Nonprofit Roundtable Committee meeting

| 2:30 - 4:30 p.m.

featuring Nicole Taylor, president and chief executive officer of the East Bay Community Foundation, Waterfront Hotel in Jack London Square, $35 for Chamber members, $45 for nonmembers

24 | Inside Oakland Breakfast Forum | 8:30 - 10 a.m. no charge for Chamber members, $10 for non-members

8 | Ambassador Committee meeting | noon - 1 p.m.

> City Hall – continued from page 16

other community groups to develop plans for economic development and growth. New grocery stores are expected to be built in areas of the city greatly underserved while other retail development is needed. The BART Airport Connector project is underway. The future looks bright and will require all of us to work hard to make positive change a reality. ■



After Five Reception



Paul Junge is the Chamber’s director of public policy.

The purpose of the Oakland Metropolitan Chamber of Commerce is to promote commerce and industry, to advance economic growth and to enhance the quality of life in the city of Oakland.

> Creating jobs

OBR OAKLAND BUSINESS REVIEW (ISSN 1092-7220) is published monthly at $100.00 a year by the Oakland Metropolitan Chamber of Commerce, 475 14th Street, Oakland, CA 94612-1903. Membership dues include subscription. Periodicals postage at Oakland, CA. Contents can’t be reproduced without permission. POSTMASTER: Send address changes to OAKLAND BUSINESS REVIEW, 475 14th Street, Oakland, CA 94612.

At Revolution Foods, co-founder Kristin Richmond is also helping to create jobs and build communities through her company’s approach to fresh meals and nutrition education for schools. Says Acumen’s Walter Allen, “I was very impressed that five other Oakland-based businesses were invited to attend the event. I’m proud of the work our companies are doing to create jobs throughout the city, and I look forward to the opportunities that more access to capital will bring.” ■


H AN K MAS LE R, (510) 87 4-4 808 |

Design/Production Editor

CARTER DESIGNS The articles published in this publication do not necessarily reflect the policies or opinions of the Oakland Metropolitan Chamber of Commerce.

– continued from page 10

CB Richard Ellis 500 12th St., Suite 105 in City Center No charge for Chamber members. $15 for non-members. 5:30 - 7:30 p.m.

December 2011 / January 2012 | 23


Oakland Restaurant Association

> Oakland restaurants –

> Chef’s Corner

Working with the community

Kim Alter

by Mark Everton A recent national advertising campaign featured a parody of the grease and oil that fast food restaurants produce. The ad featured employees slipping and sliding through a kitchen. While the ad was promoting a restaurant’s non-fried menu, the dramatization of the oil and grease is a reminder that cooking oils are a consistent byproduct of all restaurants.

Every restaurant generates fat oil and grease (FOG) through its use of dairy products, dressings, sauce cooking byproducts and fryer oils. Restaurants must handle their used cooking oil and grease byproducts in a responsible manner. Disposing of grease and oil by poring it down the drain is not an acceptable option. Clogged drains and sewer lines can have a devastating effect on the restaurants and the businesses and residents that share the underground sewer lines. Grease can generate acid fumes that corrode and eat away at sewer lines and connections causing breaks and ruptures. Untreated grease and oils end up in the bay and in Lake Merritt. The East Bay Municipal Utility District (EBMUD), the operator of Oakland’s sewage treatment plants, has a specific FOG program with guidelines and requirements that restaurants in Oakland must follow. In addition to collecting used grease and oil, EBMUD is able to convert these used byproducts into energy at their plant near the Bay Bridge toll plaza. Used oil and grease collection by a tallow or oil collection company is the most common way for restaurants to manage their used oils and grease. We have all seen the large tank trucks on the streets of Oakland. Collected grease and oils typically are used in three different ways. For many years the cosmetic industry was a big consumer of fats and oils, to be used in the manufacture of cosmetic and soap products. Used oil that is collected by the various “tallow” companies is sold to cattle feed manufacturers, and the restaurant’s used oil ends up being “recycled” back into the food stream through cattle and livestock feed. The recent revolutionary use of used oil is in the production of bio fuels. It’s true that sometimes a diesel car or truck that passes by can leave a lingering odor of French fries as fryer oil is being burned by the vehicles Mark Everton diesel engine. Oakland is fortunate to have its own bio fuel company. Sirona Fuels (formally known as Blue Sky Bio Fuel) is located on 49th Street in Oakland. Sirona currently collects oil and grease from more than 700 restaurants in the Bay Area and over 75 restaurants in Oakland alone. Sirona currently produces over 50,000 gallons of bio-diesel fuel a month that is used by many fleet trucks and delivery vans in Oakland. It’s ironic that the U.S. Foods trucks that deliver food and cooking oil to Oakland’s restaurants are burning the same oil that came from the very same restaurants. Sirona’s commitment to our local community includes a “give back” program. Restaurants select an Oakland public school that they wish to sponsor. In addition to paying the restaurant for their used oil and grease, Sirona makes a donation to the restaurant’s school of choice. In addition to keeping our bay and waterways cleaner, the involvement of Oakland restaurants with Sirona makes Oakland’s air much better to breathe while also helping out our public schools. Next time you have those greasy fries from an Oakland restaurant, don’t feel guilty; instead think about how you are helping our environment and our children. Next month’s article: Alameda County’s Green Business Program – why we should support green businesses. ■ Mark Everton, the co-chair of the Chamber’s Oakland Restaurant Association, is general manager of the Waterfront Hotel and Miss Pearl’s Jam House in Jack London Square.

Kim Alter, Haven Restaurant BACKGROUND Manresa, Aqua, Acquerello First job? Acquerello. Education? California Culinary Academy. Residence? San Francisco. BUSINESS STRATEGY Biggest challenge that you face? The size of the restaurant. Personal goal yet to be achieved? Being able to not worry about things I can’t control –a daily struggle. Why people like working for you? I like to teach every step of the process and allow people to be creative in the kitchen. Mentor? David Kinch (Manresa) and Ron Boyd (Plum/Plum Bar). What do you like most about your job? Creative freedom. What do you like least about your job? Work/life balance. Best meal/dish you ever created and to whom was it served? A tuna tartare for my mom. It’s kind of her favorite and even though it has never been on any of my menus, I always make one for her and she feels super special. Most respected competitor? Ron Boyd. PREFERENCES Stranded on a desert island; what cookbook would you want? “The Complete Guide to Edible Wild Plants, Mushrooms, Fruits, and Nuts: How to Find, Identify, and Cook Them.”

Brandstorming We work with you and your team to connect your product or service with your target. We create quality publications that help build your brand – annual reports, brochures, logos, corporate newsletters and sales kits.

C ARTER = DESIGNS C O M M U N I C AT I O N D E S I G N T H AT R E A L LY M E A N S B U S I N E S S 5 1 0 . 6 5 3 . 2 1 5 3 • c c @ c h e r i e ca r t e r d e s i g n s . c o m

Lunch with Julia Child - one question for her? What was your hardest struggle being a woman in this field? Favorite cause?A cure for cancer. Favorite movie? Goonies Favorite restaurant? At the moment, Shan Dong (a Chinese restaurant in Oakland). Favorite way to spend spare time? Sleeping and going to flea markets. On your iPod? Murder City Devils. Automobile? Scion ■

Oakland Business Review December 2011 / January 2012  

Oakland Business Review December 2011 / January 2012

Read more
Read more
Similar to
Popular now
Just for you