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‘REMEMBER THEM’ MONUMENT Ralph Abernathy III pays a visit Page 5

MARCH 2012




Dr. Teresa Swartz to speak April 6

Last beam placed on Alta Bates Summit Medical Center Page 19

Vital part of Oakland Page 24

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Oakland Business Review

Visit for more business opportunities, news and event registration.

> Calling all Broadway

> Third annual

neighbors and developers – breaking news

MegaRegion Summit set for May 4

by Eleanor Hollander

Join in for the third annual MegaRegion Summit, “Oakland: Heart of the MegaRegion,” on Friday, May 4, an educational half-day conference. The Summit will gather business leaders, labor representatives, industry experts, technology innovators, government leaders, educators, development planners, and community partners to brainstorm solutions, identify obstacles, and develop strategies to keep the Northern California region competitive. This year, the program will provide something for everyone, with a selection of themed mobile workshops that allow participants to explore Oakland – the thriving city at the heart of the Northern California MegaRegion. With the support of the local technology community, the Port of Oakland, and the city of Oakland, summit participants can choose from a number of in-depth mobile workshops. Each session will feature experts in the field and provide conference attendees with a deeper understanding of the given topic: • Trade and Exports at the Port of Oakland – This workshop tours Oakland’s Port and former Army Base site by boat and features an in-depth discussion on expanding exports at the port, increasing local and quality employment, growing trade routes to Asia, and creating a superior multi-modal logistics center for the coming decades. • Commercial Development in the city of Oakland – This workshop will examine the question, “What are the service, entertainment, and retail followups to Oakland’s 10K housing initiative of the early 2000s?” In a roving bus classroom, workshop participants will traverse Oakland’s arterial Broadway corridor from the “Hills to Bay.” • Technology and Innovation Panel Discussion – This workshop will examine Oakland’s diverse and thriving technology sector. Participants will walk to Sungevitiy’s new Jack London Square headquarters for a comprehensive conversation on the city’s advancements in green innovation, new media, venture capital, and technology workforce development. “Oakland: Heart of the MegaRegion” will be held from noon to 6:30 p.m. at the Jack London Square Market Building (55 Harrison St), and will conclude with a reception featuring Oakland restaurants, brewers and vintners. To secure your participation at this exciting economic development event, please visit the registration website – Note: Individual workshops will fill on a first-come, first-served basis, so don’t delay. Conference sponsorship packages are now available; please email for more information. ■

The city of Oakland, in partnership with the national Urban Land Institute (ULI) (, is in the midst of a strategic reassessment of the Broadway corridor in Oakland from “Hills to Bay” that presents a great opportunity for existing local business owners, brokers, developers, and private industry to get involved in revitalizing the “Main Street” of our city. The Broadway corridor from Jack London Square to the Pill Hill district (at the I-580 overpass) was treated to a distinguished panel of urban design and planning experts as part of the ULI Daniel Rose Fellowship program ( enter/11_12RoseFellows.aspx) study visit of Feb. 28March 1. The fellowship challenges mayors and fellows from selected cities to discuss how they are strategically using land use, planning, and economic development initiatives to improve the quality of life they can offer residents and businesses to be competitive in the fiscally challenging global economy of the 21st Century. The city of Oakland selected the retail environment along the length of Broadway as its “land use challenge” for 2012. The expert panel presented its analysis, recommendations, and directives to the city in a full City Council chamber of invited Broadway land use stakeholders and city department heads on March 1. Several key observations and recommendations included – Broadway is made up of five nodes or districts – Pill Hill, BroadwayValdez Triangle, Uptown Arts and Entertainment District, City Center (including Old Oakland), and Jack London Square. The panel recommended that the priority focus be on strengthening the Broadway-Valdez, Uptown, and Jack London nodes first. The other two areas are considered stable and will benefit from the improvement of the surrounding nodes. The panel stated that the auto dealerships in the Broadway Valdez node (aka “Auto Row”) were an asset to be celebrated in this district and should be viewed as complementary uses to developing comparison retail shopping in this area. The panel also observed that “retail development is a tactic to achieve policy goals, not a goal in itself.” For example, an articulated policy goal of increasing sales tax revenue could be achieved if the thousands of downtown workers at City Center spent one more dollar per day in Oakland nearly $3.9 million could be captured in sales tax revenue annually. Other panel recommendations stressed leveraging public private partnerships for development along the Broadway corridor and that creating predictability in the entitlement process with the city would be important to achieving the land use goals of the challenge. They also suggested that creating an “expediter” position within city government to facilitate business access for city services would help achieve this goal. The panel gave the Rose Fellows (Mayor Jean Quan, City Administrator Deanna Santana, and City of Oakland Department heads Aliza Gallo and Gregory Hunter) a – continued on page 7

> Fireworks: A’s vs. Yankees The Chamber’s annual “Day with the A’s” comes with a special treat in 2012. Besides gathering Chamber members and guests for an Oakland A’s – San Francisco Giants game at Coliseum (Oakland Coliseum) on Friday evening, June 22, the Chamber will also host members for an A’s – New York Yankees game and fireworks display on Friday evening, May 25. Tickets for each game, with excellent seats close to home plate in the stadium’s second level, are $40 per person, with Giants tickets being sold at a substantial discount. Those same seats for the Giants game normally sell for more than $50 per person at the box office. Should you wish to purchase tickets for both games (the fireworks show will immediately follow the Yankee game), the rate drops to $75, a $5 savings. For more information on the A’s games against the Giants and Yankees, contact Amanda Medina at the Chamber at or at (510) 874-4800, ext. 319. ■

> Great success

All it took was a handshake and the networking was on at the Chamber’s recent Oakland and East Bay Business and Procurement Fair. Some 60 vendors and hundreds of visitors made the afternoon a great success. Above, Carolyn Pryor (left) of Carolyn’s Marketing Services has the attention of potential customers. For the complete story and more photos from the event, see pages 2-3. ■

April 2010 |


> Exhibitors

proclaim Procurement Fair a great success Mo Aabas of Modern Express Courier tries his luck at the Cranbook roulette wheel as property manager Kathleen Andrade looks on.

Blasdell’s Business Products president Margee Witt (left) meets Michael Weber and Myra Espinosa of Executive Inn & Suites.

Karen Dhillon (left) of Scott Valley Bank discusses company history with Gary Foss of Recology East Bay.

Karen Rice of Constant Contact conducted two social media seminars during the fair.

Detect All Security & Fire Operations Director Amy Roither discusses safety devices with Wim-Kees van Hout of Scott Valley Bank.

It’s not too late to advertise in the 2012 Spring/Summer Baseball edition. Call (510) 845-2035 today! Or write

Alameda County salutes the vision and is proud to be a supporter and participant with the Oakland Metropolitan Chamber of Commerce 2012 Oakland and East Bay Business & Procurement Partners in local Fair. economic development 2

| OBR Oakland Business Review |


his month’s Oakland and East Bay Business and Procurement Fair featured 60 organizations and hundreds of businesspeople gathered over a three-hour period to discuss ways local businesses can work together in 2012. The fair is an annual event – hosted by the Oakland Metropolitan Chamber of Commerce – that was expanded in recent years to include a variety of state and county public agencies in addition to local businesses. The final tally of exhibiting organizations was 60 – with 45 businesses and 15 public agencies participating. The successful mid-afternoon event was attended by a variety of Chamber members eager to participate in quality business-tobusiness networking and customer lead generation. The day included a number of raffle drawings and a presentation by Constant Contact, a social media marketing company. Chamber members and exhibitors gained much from their participation. The following are comments from a number of exhibitors who found their time at the fair to be well worth their while.

Christopher Weills of Bay Sports Publishing shows off a copy of the Ultimate Sports Guide to Anastasia Nicole of Recology East Bay.

“This is an invaluable way to meet potential customers and make Oakland’s businesspeople aware of our hotel.” – Michael Weber, Executive Inn & Suites “I’ve had a chance to talk to a lot of local businesspeople about the programs that would benefit them and about the soldiers who will soon be getting out of the Army.” – Staff Sgt. Corey Edwards, United States Army “This has been an excellent way to introduce ourselves to Chamber members, make a lot of good contacts, and plant a lot of seeds.” Lou Nihoul – LawRoom Bob Griffin (right) of Williams Adley explains his company’s services to Ron White of LegalShield.

“We’re delighted to be Chamber members and find it helpful to meet new customers and say hello to some current ones. Margee Witt – Blaisdell’s Business Products “Even though Torrey Pines Bank has been in the Bay Area for five years, I always meet people who didn’t know about their local community bank. It’s also a personal chance to get re-connected with friends from the Chamber’s Leadership Oakland and East Bay Women in Business programs.” Dale Marie Golden – Torrey Pines Bank “We’re here for community awareness and to drum up some sponsorships for the event. I’ve also met a lot of people who are anxious to participate.” Gene Brtalik – Oakland Running Festival

Vice President Dale Marie Golden of Torrey Pines Bank makes a point with Scott Leary of Builders Exchange of Alameda County.

“We’ve made a lot of contacts here both today and in the past. It’s certainly worth our time and effort to have a booth.” Steve Parry – Fidelity Roof Company

March 2012 | 3

Names in the news • Eric Kisshauer, the director of business development for Pankow Builders, has been elected president of the Design Build Institute of America (DBIA) Western Region for 2012. The region includes California, Hawaii, Arizona and Nevada. DBIA promotes the value of design-build project delivery and teaches the effective integration of design and construction services to ensure success for owners and design and Eric Kisshauer construction practitioners. • The law firm of Donahue Gallagher Woods LLP has announced the addition of two new associates, Christian Martinez and Casey Williams. Martinez specializes in intellectual property and dispute resolution with broad experience in matters involving technology, trade secrets, business torts, international disputes, state and federal litigation, including significant experience in patent litigation. Williams’ practice focuses Christian Martinez on business and corporate matters and civil litigation. • The Oakland Board of Port Commissioners has promoted Jean Banker to deputy executive director and Chris Chan to director of engineering. Banker is responsible for assisting the executive director in planning, developing organizing, Casey Williams and directing the activities of the Port of Oakland. Chan oversees the Port’s engineering division, which consists of five departments: Project Design and Delivery – Aviation; Project Design and Delivery – Maritime; Engineering Services; IT; and Utilities. • Wendel, Rosen, Black & Dean LLP Partner William Acevedo has been appointed vice president of the Regional Parks Foundation Board of Directors for 2012. He originally joined the governing board as a member in 2008. The Regional Parks Foundation was established in 1969 to encourage private contributions in support of the East Bay Regional Park District. The Foundation’s mission is to support the East William Acevedo Bay Regional Parks District through fundraising that provides broader public access, resource protection and preservation, education and recreational programs, and the acquisition of parklands. • David Armijo, who has more than 30 years of experience in government and is a highly recognized transportation executive working in aviation, toll roads, and the public transit industry, has been named general manager for the AC Transit District. Armijo has served as chief executive for transit agencies in California, New Mexico, Texas and Florida, and specializes in bus and David Armijo rail planning, capital program development, aviation leases, grants, contract negotiations and public involvement. • The Multi-Ethnic Sports Hall of Fame (formerly African American Ethnic Sports Hall of Fame), which is dedicated to honoring sports legends and community leaders of all races, will induct former professional football quarterback Craig Morton and seven other retired professional athletes at its annual Bay Area Induction Ceremony on Saturday, March 31 at the Waterfront Hotel in Jack London Square. For ticket information, contact Barbara Taylor at (510) 436-5253 or at • AC Transit has announced the hiring of a veteran transit engineering expert to head the agency’s Bus Rapid Transit (BRT) Program. Arul Edwin, who has successfully managed similar transportation projects from Boston to Seattle, is now the program director for a BRT plan that will modernize and improve East Bay bus service. Once completed, the BRT system promises to reduce travel times, traffic congestion and ozone emissions, and generally benefit the environment overall. ■


| OBR Oakland Business Review |

From the President | Joe Haraburda

Good news for Oakland Ralph Abernathy III views ‘Remember Them’ monument Ralph Abernathy III, son of former civil rights leader Ralph Abernathy, recently inspected and viewed the “Remember Them: Champions for Humanity” monument in Oakland’s Henry J. Kaiser Memorial Park. The monument contains a full-figured image of his father during the civil rights march in Selma, Alabama. Abernathy was joined by sculptor Mario Chiodo, who created the masterpiece, and both spoke to seventh ▼ Ralph Abernathy III and eighth grade students from Saint spoke to students and Martin de Porres School in Oakland. guests when he visited During their visit, Abernathy and the Remember Them: Chiodo discussed the prospects of a Champions for Humanity similar Remember Them sculpture in monument last month. Atlanta at the original site where Ralph Abernathy and Martin Luther King Jr. first conceived their plans for the civil rights movement. This is extremely positive for the city of Oakland – to be used as an example of how a city can create change that inspires, educates and changes an area for the betterment of all.

Welcome Faz Restaurant Faz Restaurant held its ribbon cutting recently and welcomed the Oakland community with a wonderful array of food and beverages. Located on the ground floor of 1111 Broadway, the restaurant has experienced great success in its first weeks in Oakland. Owner Faz

Poursohi is excited about his new restaurant and was overheard saying, “I have always wanted to be in Oakland.” Faz joins a long list of trendy restaurants that are receiving rave reviews by locals and in the national media! You are in for a treat for lunch, cocktails and/or dinner. Call for reservations at (510) 272-1111 or online at

National planning leaders focus on Oakland Planning in Oakland has reached a new and positive height with the help of the Urban Land Institute! City Administrator Deanna Santana lauded the partnership and the focus the national Urban Land Institute team has brought to a tough land use challenge along the Broadway corridor in our city. Read more about ULI involvement in Oakland in a page 1 article written by Chamber Economic Development Director Eleanor Hollander, AICP.

Coliseum City one step closer Fred Blackwell, the city’s assistant city administrator for economic development, gained approval from the Council Committee on Economic Development to advance the Coliseum City Project to the full Council on March 6. Council approved funding in 2011 and now the ED Committee authorized the exclusive negotiating agreement with JRDV Urban International, HKS Sports and Entertainment, HKS Inc, and Forest City Real Estate Services LLC, or Affiliated Entities, and authorized a professional services contract with Lamphier-Gregory for approval by the full Council. Supporters of the project believe it could very well aid in retaining the A’s, Raiders and Warriors in Oakland. ■

We stand up for businesses in every part of Oakland.

March 2012 | 5

> Mission to zero waste

> Recent ‘Inside Oakland’ breakfasts

by David Tucker

feature guests Miley, Ruby

Remember the cartoon the “Jetsons,” where everything from making the bed to fixing dinner was done with the push of a button? One thing rarely seen was Rosie the robot or Elroy taking out the trash. Who knew the Jetsons were portraying a “Zero Waste” family back in 1962? Flash forward to 2012 – zero waste isn’t futuristic, it’s becoming the norm. Effective July 1, 2012, California AB 341 requires mandatory recycling by businesses and public entities generating four cubic yards or more of solid waste per week and by multi-family complexes with five units or more. Surprisingly, compliance with AB 341 is easier David Tucker than you think – almost as easy as the push of a button. Here are some quick and easy tips from the recycling team at Waste Management of Alameda County. Whether you have an existing recycling program or are starting from scratch, practicing the 4 R’s – Reduce, Reuse, Recycle and Rot (composting) can help you maximize your success. The first step is evaluating your waste stream for recycling. • Appoint an office champion – Identify someone who will take ownership of the AB 341 process, coordinate employee participation, arrange a site visit with your waste service provider and conduct periodic reviews. • Request a free site assessment – A recycling coordinator will conduct a comprehensive site assessment to determine ways you can reduce waste and increase recycling. The assessment also includes determining appropriate levels of service and proper carts or containers as well as free staff training to sustain the program. • Recycle – Place a desk-side recycling container (an empty copier paper carton will suffice) at every desk. Collect paper, bottles, cans, and cardboard/paperboard from all your employees. Recycle old printer cartridges using mail-back containers from the supplier. Collect batteries, compact fluorescent bulbs and tubes, along with e-waste for convenient recycling by mail ( Help turn old items into something new and useful. Additional activities to help lower your monthly trash bill: • Reduce – Are you purchasing products with more packaging than product? Think before printing a hard copy of a document. E-mail information to co-workers instead of using a hard copy. By reducing the amount of material going into your trash bins and increasing the level of recycling, you will have an immediate impact on your monthly garbage rate. • Reuse – Use items again! From office supplies to the water cooler, encourage employees to reuse. Set your printer to automatically print double-sided. Use paper already printed on one side for notes or printing drafts. Bring your lunch to work in reusable containers. Drink your coffee out of a mug or bring a travel mug with you to the coffee shop. • Rot – Do your employees bring their lunch to work or do you have a cafeteria? Organics comprise nearly one-third of the materials in our landfills. Starting a food scraps program eliminates food from the trash, contributes to the creation of compost and helps conserve natural resources. Compliance with AB 341 can be easy. In fact, you’re just a few buttons away from success. Push (510) 613-2104 or (510) 613-2849 to schedule your free site assessment with a Waste Management recycling/sales coordinator. Mission to Zero Waste is within your reach. ■ David Tucker is municipal affairs manager at Waste Management of Alameda County.

▲Waste Management of Alameda County assisted in the development of a recycling program at Nestle Dreyer’s Grand Ice Cream in Oakland.


| OBR Oakland Business Review |

by Paul Junge

The Chamber’s Inside Oakland Breakfast Forum has already featured two interesting and informative speakers at its 2012 Friday morning meetings – Alameda County Supervisor Nate Miley in January and Oakland City Auditor Courtney Ruby in February. Supervisor Miley spoke with hope about the economic prospects for Alameda County. He noted that new automobile registrations were up, as were the number of home sales. Down were the number of foreclosures and the unemployment rate. After years of declining property values and tax revenues, Miley suggested that better times may be ahead. Transportation funding was another topic of discussion. Supervisor Miley told the group that a sales tax measure to extend the .5 cent sales tax and increase it by another half-cent will be coming to the ballot in November. Over the first 30 years the tax will raise nearly $8 billion and will fund a number of projects including road maintenance and repair, infrastructure at the Oakland Army Base, and extension of the BART system to Livermore. Last month City Auditor Ruby explained that she has the duty to review many activities of city government and has the right to look into any matter of government she chooses. In fulfilling that oversight role, Ruby has issues 50 reports on city government over the past five years, with those reports including more than 550 recommendations to improve city operations. She told the audience of Chamber members and guests that for every one dollar spent in the City Auditor’s budget there are $10 identified in potential savings. Ruby's team has reviewed the city's hiring practices, public campaign financing, funding for children and ▲ Alameda youth services, library services fund, emergency medical County Supervisor services and paramedic services funds, Public Works Nate Miley. Agency, the grant management for the Measure Y Violence Prevention Programs, and more. One recent effort was an audit of the Fox Theater. The Chamber’s Inside Oakland Breakfast ▼ City Auditor Courtney Forum continues this month when Oakland City Ruby (third from right) Councilmember Patricia Kernighan speaks on at was surrounded by 8:30 a.m. on Friday, March 23. ■ Chamber members and Paul Junge is the Chamber’s director of public policy.

guests following her Inside Oakland address in February.

economic development Creating a strong economy

> Economic Development Forum explores corporate social responsibility by Eleanor Hollander

In mid-February, the Chamber’s ▲ At the Economic Development Economic Development Forum Forum (left to right): Cristina hosted Solomon Belette, chief Hernandez (Catholic Charities of executive officer of Catholic Charities the East Bay – CCEB), Chamber of the East Bay (CCEB) and Heather Economic Development Director Kulp, external affairs manager for Eleanor Hollander, Solomon Belette Chevron, who discussed stimulating (CCEB), Nain Lopez (CCEB), Heather workforce development through Kulp (Chevron), Cynthia Rothschild partnerships. (CCEB), and Charissa Frank of Kulp and Belette discussed how their Swinerton Builders and chair of partnership first began back in 2009 when the Chamber’s Economic Chevron joined the California Partnership, Development Department. an organization whose focus is on education and economic development. The partnership allowed Chevron a few larger grants than usual, allowing the company to do something “new and exciting.” Kulp underscored how important it is for Chevron to support programs that are attached to metrics and that provide training that is linked and relevant to today’s economy within the communities that Chevron serves. They wanted to fund a program that that would have “impact on the ground” and would have reportable metrics to the “community shareholders.” Into this role stepped Catholic Charities of the East Bay (and four other grantees), an organization with a long history of working in Richmond. The Catholic Charities of the East Bay had a very successful Bilingual Medical Assistant Training (BMAT) program underway at the time that allowed English language learners to both get ESL (English as a Second Language) training and a medial assistant degree Together with both monetary and programmatic assistance from Chevron, the program has been a great success. In its first two years, 37 students have completed the program and been successfully placed in an internship. Fifteen

students have landed full-time jobs as medical assistants working for at least an $11 per hour wage. At the Chamber’s Economic Development Forum, Kulp and Belette shared some tips on what makes for a successful corporate social responsibility partnership. They underscored that it takes: • Committed corporate partners • A nonprofit that has a clear social mission that aligns with that of the corporate partner • Both parties have to be willing to make a long-term sustainable investment (that will likely take time to mature) • The nonprofit partner has to able to achieve results. The Forum’s attendees then had a robust round of questions about what makes a grant proposal “yes-able” – though there are many factors, some tips include (1) doing your homework on the corporate funder (2) demonstrating how your goals align (3) designing a program with metrics so you can best indicate how successful your work has been in the past. Overall, it was inspiring to hear about a unique partnership that had done just that. The next Economic Development Forum will be held on Wednesday, March 14 at 3 p.m. and will feature a distinguished panel from the East Bay Regional Park District who will discuss the economic value of parks, especially with respect to workforce. Please join us! ■ Eleanor Hollander is the Chamber’s director of economic development.

> Ambassador of the Month Chadwick Spell, a business account executive with Comcast Business Class, has been named the Chamber’s Ambassador of the Month for the second consecutive month. “I thank the Chamber and all members for the honor of being able to be a part of a community that is based on cooperation, partnership, and support,” Spell says. “When I was introduced to the Chamber I had the same questions many have – ‘What is the benefit of being a member?’ and ‘What does an Ambassador do?’” Says Spell, “As a businessperson, the Chamber is the one place I can connect, learn, and develop relationships Chadwick Spell with other professionals in Oakland. We can come together to assist in the growth and development of our businesses and this great city.” Spell and Comcast have launched the “Chamber Affinity Program,” which is designed to give savings to members above the offering that one could get outside of the organization. “Comcast and I are committed to bringing the fastest and finest services to the Bay Area,” says Spell, “and with new construction around the bay, I’m confident that we are on the path to helping Oakland and the entire bay in its efforts and growth.” ■

> Broadway corridor

– continued from page 1

“homework assignment” to complete before the group meets again, which included: • Developing a place-based vision statement or tag-line for the Broadway Corridor Collaboration with the Broadway centered CBDs and BIDs to outline a comprehensive public safety strategy for the corridor, utilizing the existing safety ambassador program. • Convening a committee of the business community to get feedback on how to better serve the needs of the business community (both new and existing) along this corridor. The city is challenged to report its progress back to the expert panel again in six weeks; the length of the entire program is due to continue for a year. To read more about the other 2012 fellowship cities, including Kansas City, Providence, and Tampa, visit ProfessionalDevelopment/Rose%20Center/11_12RoseFellows.aspx. How you can get involved – If you have a business or development plan (or would like to have plans in this area), especially along the Broadway corridor, your involvement in this process is encouraged. On May 4, the Chamber (along with the city) will delve into the Broadway Corridor development with a mobile workshop (http://business.oakland that traverses the entire Broadway corridor area from Bay to Hills. Sign up today! ■

March 2012 | 7


| OBR Oakland Business Review |


Women in Business


‘Women are making the East Bay better,’ says Taylor More than 100 people – mostly women – packed the February session of the Chamber’s “Women in Business Roundtable” at the Waterfront Hotel in Oakland to hear East Bay Community Foundation President & Chief Executive Officer Nicole Taylor pull back the curtain on a little-discussed topic – how economically empowered women are making the East Bay better. Taylor’s presentation – ending with a standing ovation – described factors driving the East Bay’s economy as well as the large businesses and nonprofit organizations headed by women and the contributions of those organizations. She profiled a number of economically empowered women in business, education, the nonprofit sector, and philanthropy whose leadership is making the East Bay stronger. And she discussed the importance

of understanding the ▲ Following the East Bay Women in Business Roundtable luncheon, members motivations that propel of the Steering Committee and Chamber both women and men into President Joe Haraburda thanked guest leadership positions. speaker Nicole Taylor (third from the left). The first AfricanFrom left are Haraburda, co-chairs Kim American to lead the Arnone (Buchalter Nemer) and Allyson Fattore (Sunwest Bank), Cherie Carter East Bay Community (Carter Designs), and Chamber Board Foundation since its member Kim Delevett (Southwest Airlines). inception in 1928, Taylor also detailed what the Foundation has accomplished under her leadership to make the East Bay better by helping those most in need get good jobs and the education leading to those jobs. “Exactly 55 of the Bay Area’s 100 largest women-owned companies are headquartered in the East Bay, including seven of the 10 largest companies on that list,” said Taylor. “The 25 largest women-owned businesses in the East Bay together employed more than 2,700 people here in 2010 and generated $1.93 billion in revenue, a portion of which finds its way back to the East Bay economy in addition to jobs provided.” Taylor also disclosed that 11 of the largest 25 nonprofit organizations in the East Bay are headed by women. “The primary mission of each and every one of these organizations,” she said, “is to make the East Bay a better place, whether it is through health, the well being of children, or providing food to those who are hungry.” Taylor said the untold story of women making the East Bay better includes leaders who have unusual stories, walking distinctive paths to get where they are, but who also shared similarities of “determination, guts, a bit of brilliance, hard work, passion, patience and perseverance, self-discipline, business and financial sophistication, a stiff backbone and a willingness to make personal sacrifice when necessary.” She challenged women in the audience to understand their motivations for doing what they do in their careers and asked them to join her and other economically empowered women to make the East Bay better. “We can address the issues in our community only through the power of many,” said Taylor. “The force of many empowered women can and will make a huge impact on this region.” ■


> Dr. Teresa Swartz to speak April 6 on the ‘transformative power of education’ by Kim Y. Arnone

The East Bay Women in Business Roundtable (EBWIBR) 2012 luncheon series, “Women Defining the East Bay’s Future,” continues in April with a woman who educates many of the Bay Area’s upcoming business leaders. Dr. Teresa (Terri) Swartz, dean of the College of Business and Economics and professor of marketing at California State University, East Bay, headlines the April 6 luncheon at the Waterfront Hotel in Dr. Teresa (Terri) Swartz Jack London Square. Dr. Swartz will draw on her substantial experience as an instructor and university administrator to discuss the transformative power of education and how education can impact the development of business leaders and the businesses they run. She has a B.S. and M.B.A. from Clarion University and a Ph.D. from Ohio State University. Dr. Swartz was named dean of the College of Business and Economics at California State University, East Bay in December 2007. She spent 11 years on the faculty of Arizona State University where, among other positions, she was director of research for the Center for Service Leadership. Just prior to joining CSU East Bay, Dr. Swartz was a professor for 16 years at the Orfalea College of Business at California State University, San Luis Obispo. She has worked on marketing research projects in southern Africa, the Middle East and Europe, in addition to the United States. Dr. Swartz’s expertise and insight into how education is shaping business leaders, in particular, businesswomen, promises to make this event enlightening. Her vision and leadership has resulted in the selection of CSU East Bay's College of Business and Economics, as one of the best business schools in the United States by the Princeton Review for the sixth consecutive year. Dr. Swartz’s recent accolades also includes that she has been named, by

the San Francisco Business Times, one of the Bay Area’s Most Influential Women for the past two years. The event will be held at the Waterfront Hotel at 10 Washington St. in Jack London Square, and will begin at 11:15 a.m. with the program starting at 11:45 a.m. The event concludes with networking until 1:30 p.m. The cost is $35 for Chamber members and $45 for non-members. Same day registration increases the price by $10. For questions or to register, visit or contact Amanda Medina at or at (510) 874-4800, ext. 319. ■ Kim Y. Arnone, senior counsel at the law firm of Buchalter Nemer, is co-chair of the East Bay Women In Business Roundtable.

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March 2012 | 9

> Age differently –

> Major League BBQ,

Take your time

baseball and celebrities team up for foster youth

by Nader R. Shabahangi, Ph.D.

To be human requires effort in living. We are roughly shaped clay and it is left to us to complete and polish who we are.

Born into a time, circumstances and culture, these outside forces can bear heavy on our formation. Parents, schools, friends, environment and major events as we grow up influence how it is we experience this world and ourselves. While outside forces are strong in the way they impact our formation, they are, nevertheless, small when compared to the thousands, even millions of years of our history and becoming. These years are part of us and constitute the bedrock of our existence. Exceptional people in our human history not only have attempted to uncover this bedrock of our existence, but have also provided us with ways to access and connect Nader R. with this foundation. They have given us Shabahangi, Ph.D. means such as meditation, prayer, education, selfless service and other ways of learning to be in the world. Through such means, every one of us common mortals has the ability to enter the realm of timeless truths. This compass can direct us towards a life grounded in the deep wisdom of our ancestors as we need to face the challenges of our present lives. Grounded as such, the challenges we face in life are no longer a source of suffering. Rather, they have become the very means through which we understand who we are. The process of aging equals the process of taking time. All of our growing and learning takes time. It is understood that the formation of a child, its education and development into an adult, takes time. Here I am proposing that growing into a full human being also takes time and thus requires of us to age into “old age.” It is through aging that we are afforded the opportunity to become more human, that we are able to connect to our ground of Being. As we age we begin to notice and question the very ground we walk on, the very Being we are. This kind of questioning, philosophical and often spiritual in nature, brings us to a deeper layer of understanding of who we are, our meaning and purpose. Such questioning has far more backing and support from the wisdom of the ages than does today’s modern scientific mindset a mere few hundred years old. From philosophers and mystics, to now theoretical and Quantum physicists, the understanding of some form or energy holding all together, has been expressed time and time again in all of the world’s documented traditions. The thought that the world is an indivisible whole and that a form of spirit and/or energy encompasses us all, form part of the canon of timeless truths. To age differently means to understand the purpose of our aging, of our lives, as a deepening of our awareness of these timeless truths. Through aging we are afforded the opportunity to grasp the ground of our Being, to experience our interconnectedness, to learn about love and to love. I would like to propose a mindset of life-long learning and growth that understands that becoming an elder is the goal of life. This elder is one who has become aware of the timeless truths of life. It is time to reshape the discourse on aging dominated by an anti-aging sentiment to one that looks at aging as an opportunity to live a deeper and more fulfilling life. Instead of material accumulation and outward success, instead of a youthful body and spirit, the goal of life is wisdom and deep awareness. Age differently. Take your time. ■ Nader R. Shabahangi, Ph.D. is founder and chief executive officer of AgeSong, an organization providing assisted living, independent living and forgetfulness support for elders in the Bay Area.

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California’s premier barbecue destination is bringing some of the biggest names in the world of professional barbecue to heat up the Oakland Coliseum parking lot on Saturday, July 7 for the second Bay Area BBQ Championship (BABC). Certified judges and celebrities determine who will be the professional, amateur and people’s choice champions. All the proceeds from the BABC benefit the thousands of foster children, youth and families served by Alternative Family Services. The event will be held prior to an Oakland A’s game that evening against the Seattle Mariners. According to world renowned chef, restaurateur and critic Narsai David, a celebrity judge at last year’s event, “For a first-year event, the Bay Area BBQ Championship was really spectacular. It reminded me of the early years of the Gilroy Garlic Festival which I hosted to 13 years.” Highlights for 2012 include: • A professional BBQ cook-off with top teams sanctioned by the Kansas City Barbecue Society. • AAA Minor League cook-off (for backyard enthusiasts, first timers, foodies, corporate teams, etc). • People’s Choice (Pro, AAA, corporate and community partners) serve samples of BBQ-related items to earn the “People’s” vote. • Celebrity chefs and judges including Ray Lampe, aka Dr. BBQ – celebrity chef, author and television personality • Benefit concert • Live BBQ demo tent • Barbecue and Beer Tasting tent • BABC Boardwalk for families and sponsors (Home Depot Kids Clinic, urban gardening, carnival attractions) Join the BABC and help Northern California foster youth. Sponsors, volunteers and professional, amateur, corporate and community partner BBQ teams are needed. For more information, contact Jennifer Harper at (510) 759-1271 or at for more information. ■


Health Care

> Children's Hospital Oakland – 30 years on the front lines of the HIV/AIDS pandemic December 1, 2011, marked World AIDS Day. The United Nations chose “Getting to Zero” as its theme. Zero infection, zero discrimination. At Children’s Hospital & Research Center Oakland, getting to zero is more than a theme. It’s a mission, and has been for three decades. “We were pioneers,” program director of the Pediatric HIV/AIDS Program Ann Petru, MD, frankly admits when asked about the early years of AIDS treatment at Children’s Hospital. When AIDS first appeared in California three decades ago, Dr. Petru had been at Children’s four years, working in pediatric infectious diseases for only a year. By the time she saw her first case of AIDS at Children’s in 1983, an epidemic was fully underway. Back then, treatment amounted to little more than diagnosis and death. “There was no HIV test,” she recalls. “No way to get critical information about an individual’s T-cell numbers or viral loads. We were still figuring out that the disease could be transmitted to children and newborns.” In one early case, Arthur Ammann, MD, traced pediatric infection to a local blood bank. His work helped prevent future transmissions, but it couldn’t help dozens of already affected babies and children. In 1986, Children’s established a Pediatric HIV/AIDS Program with Dr. Petru as director. Dr. Petru’s team also sought treatments for mothers. In 1989, Children’s Hospital Oakland received federal funding as part of the national Pediatric AIDS Clinical Trials Group. Many parents allowed their children to participate in these vital clinical trials. Petru encouraged her HIV-infected patients to enter studies – including those looking at new drugs for HIV and childhood vaccines – with more than half of her patients eventually participating. As a result of major groundbreaking studies, Children’s patients received drugs like AZT and protease inhibitors, which drastically changed AIDS and its course in the population, including children infected with HIV/AIDS. “In 1994, pregnant women who carried full-term babies had a one-in-four chance of passing the virus on to the child, while premature infants had a one-intwo chance of getting HIV,” explains Dr. Petru. “However, when women were given AZT in the last six weeks of pregnancy and during labor, and their newborns given AZT for their first six weeks of life, the rate of infection decreased from 25 percent to

8 percent in full-term infants.” And, Dr. Petru says, “When protease inhibitors came along in the mid ’90s, transmission fell and remains now as low as 1 to 2 percent.” This means that, with a good drug regimen, up to 98 percent of children delivered by mothers with HIV are born without HIV. “In our clinic alone, where we meet with HIV-infected mothers to help them give birth to healthy babies, 300 to 350 consecutive women have not passed the virus to ▲ Ann Petru, MD, in 1991, shares a their babies,” states Dr. Petru. “That’s a hug and a laugh with a young patient during a blood transfusion. real achievement.” If Children’s first decade of HIV/AIDS was about facing disease and death, the second was about transmission prevention, and the third was about maintenance. Children and youth with HIV and AIDS learned to live with their condition, and Dr. Petru’s program has been at their side. “This is no longer a fatal disease in children,” she says. “But getting kids to follow their treatment regimen – medicative adherence – is the name of the game.” The work of Dr. Petru and her team has established a solid foundation for preventing new infections through birth. Today, their work continues to positively improve the lives of children living with the disease. Heading into its fourth decade of the AIDS epidemic, Children’s Hospital, through the Pediatric Hospital Aids Program, continues to provide care for about 60 HIV/AIDS-infected children and teens, along with 20 to 30 pregnant, infected women annually, encouraging them to care for themselves and their unborn children. “HIV/AIDS awareness has helped limit new infection rates,” explains Dr. Petru. “However, to date there is still no vaccine and none on the horizon. We cannot become complacent. Further research needs to be done to develop new drugs, study new drug combinations, simplify the drug regimes – and thereby improve the lives of those living with disease.” We haven’t gotten to zero yet, but Dr. Petru and her team are working towards that goal, one mother and one child at a time. ■

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Health Care

> Targeting chronic diseases can

> Millions of Kaiser Permanente

lead to a healthier bottom line by Wade Overgaard

health records securely available on mobile devices

Given the busy day-to-day activities in the workplace, it’s easy to overlook the importance of tracking the overall health of your workforce. But chronic conditions – including diabetes, asthma and obesity – currently account for more than 75 percent of health care spending in the United States, and that can be an expensive proposition for employers. How expensive? Studies have shown that chronic conditions can add about $3,600 a year Wade Overgaard per person to employer health care costs. Fortunately, many of these chronic conditions can be prevented or more effectively managed by leading healthier lives, and you as employers can play an important role in this effort by taking steps to improve the health of your workforce. Encourage your workers to get routine screenings, promote physical activity in the workplace, and provide healthier options in your vending machines and cafeterias. Well-structured, evidence-based wellness programs can have a real impact on a company’s bottom line and can help control health care costs for everyone. Focusing on an employee’s total health can lead to a more energetic, productive workforce that can give your company a competitive edge. There are many resources to help employers find ways to get their workforce healthier. For some businesses, the information that can be easily generated from electronic medical records (EMRs) can help make prevention more of a reality. EMRs can provide aggregated high-level data that gives an overall snapshot of employee health. The businesses must be large enough – 100 employees or more – so that this aggregated data does not reveal personal health information about individual employees. Those businesses can ask their health care providers and insurers to determine the share of employees who smoke, have high cholesterol or have high blood pressure. With this information, ranked to show which problems are most severe in the workplace, employers can offer targeted health programs and activities aimed at preventing chronic conditions. If the majority of employees are overweight, it makes sense to offer a

Kaiser Permanente already has the largest electronic medical record system in the world. Recently, the health care organization announced that nearly nine million Kaiser Permanente patients now can easily access their own medical information anywhere in the world on mobile devices through a mobile-optimized website. Kaiser Permanente has released a new app for Android devices, and users of other mobile devices, including the iPhone, can also get full access to that information from the Kaiser Permanente health record system with the mobile-optimized version of An additional app for iPhone will be released in the coming months, but iPhone users can easily download a shortcut icon onto their home screens that will take them directly to the mobile-friendly with a touch of the finger. Kaiser Permanente has led the health care world in providing online access to information for its patients. In 2011 alone, more than 68 million lab test results were made available online to Kaiser Permanente patients. The mobile-optimized site and the new app make that information, and much more, securely available at members’ fingertips. Kaiser Permanente patients will have 24/7 access to lab results, diagnostic information, direct and secure email access to their doctors, and will also be able to order prescription refills. Patients have been able to email their doctors for five years, with more than 12 million e-visits in 2011 alone. Kaiser Permanente expects that number to increase significantly with the new app and mobile-optimized site. The Android app is available now in the Android market at no charge. Users of other mobile devices can access the same set of care-support tools at no charge through the new secure, mobile-optimized member website, which is available through smart-phone Internet browsers. With the new offering, Kaiser Permanente patients have 24/7 access from their mobile devices to view their secure personal health records, email their doctors, schedule appointments, refill prescriptions and locate Kaiser Permanente medical facilities. Members who have the ability to act on behalf of a family member on now can accomplish the same tasks. Those caring for an elderly parent or someone with a chronic condition can now more easily check lab results, refill prescriptions and communicate with the doctor’s office on behalf of the patient. ■

> Take a ‘walk’ through Kaiser’s Sidney R. Garfield Health Care Innovation Center

wellness program that actively promotes healthier eating. If there are a large number of smokers, an in-house smoking cessation program would be in order. Controlling health care costs requires a multi-pronged, integrated effort that goes beyond the medical providers and health insurer trying to prevent chronic diseases, though. Employers also need to stress and consistently reinforce the same healthy lifestyles in the workplace and model good behavior. You can start small. When eating with employees, order a salad instead of a cheeseburger. With small groups, hold “walking” staff meetings. Even better: Start a walking program to encourage all employees to get more physical exercise (see the benefits of regular walking at www.everybody There’s even a smart phone app to help track those workplace walks. You can also learn more about how to turn your workplace into a “wellplace” by downloading a free step-by-step guide to customize a wellness program that’s just right for your business at: center/healthworks#anchor1 ■

Kaiser Permanente has launched the Sidney R. Garfield Health Care Innovation Center Virtual Tour, which for the first time gives people worldwide a behind-the-scenes peek at how Kaiser Permanente develops and tests health care innovations that benefit the organization’s nearly nine million members. It all starts with an idea – a fresh approach that some of Kaiser Permanente’s 16,000 physicians and 167,000 employees want to investigate in hopes of discovering a better way to deliver health care. Caregivers come to the Garfield Center, located in San Leandro, to find better ways to serve the organization’s members. Every considered detail is examined here through simulations, technology testing, prototyping, product evaluations, and training in this unique facility, which looks like a Hollywood movie set. For the first time, this venue will be open to the public, virtually. Come take a virtual, 360-degree tour of the Garfield Center from the comfort of your computer. Through your web browser, you can explore this dynamic facility and hear directly from some of Kaiser Permanente’s innovators and leaders. Use the cursor to pull the 3D images in any direction you like for a 360degree, floor-to-ceiling view of the space. Click on the blue buttons and you’ll “walk” down the halls for an all-access look at some of the most sophisticated innovation environments in health care today. Subject matter experts in each space explain how the Garfield Center is being used to support and accelerate innovation at Kaiser Permanente. The virtual tour can be accessed from all Web browsers and soon will be optimized for viewing on iPads and other tablets and hand-helds. Visit and “tour” this living laboratory, which serves as a test bed for the innovations that Kaiser Permanente implements in all of its medical facilities. ■

Wade Overgaard is Kaiser Permanente’s senior vice president for California Health Plan Operations.

March 2012 | 13

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Health Care

> The excellence of the Alameda County Medical Center by Wright L. Lassiter III Any business executive will tell you that for a company to be truly successful, leadership must come from throughout the organization, not only from the C-suite executives. That’s true for a business, a health care provider and a community. We are succeeding at Alameda County Medical Center because each day our 3,000 employees take pride and responsibility in their important work. We know that in an era of health care reform, we must attract patients who have a choice in health care while never losing sight of our Wright L. Lassiter III mission to serve all in need. We also know that our continued commitment and leadership in improving the quality of life in Oakland and Alameda County is crucial for the economic success of our area. This is our home. We live in these communities. And I am pleased to report that we are doing great things to create a healthier and stronger community for all of us. Today, we are one of the top employers in Alameda County. In 2011, we contributed $445 million to Alameda County in combined payroll and purchasing, and through our doors we saw nearly 300,000 outpatient clinic visits. Tomorrow, our impact will be even greater as we are expanding nearly every area of our services. It is growth that has already begun. Just this last year we enhanced our clinical programs, opened a new state-of-the-art combined cardiac catheterization and angiography suite, and nearly doubled our space at our south county clinic. We also expanded specialty care services, including orthopedics, optometry, dental, and pain management. By 2017, we will have completed construction on a $668 million investment by Alameda County in a new campus for Highland Hospital, including a new nine-story, 169-bed Acute Tower, and a 78,000-square-foot, threestory Specialty Care Building which will house our centers of excellence in Cardiology, Oncology, Gastroenterology and Urgent Care – opening in 2013.

We’re expanding our services and access ▲ The three-story Specialty Care with an understanding that, like all businesses in Building, opening in a competitive environment, we must continually 2013. provide more value – to our customers, our employees and the community. In 2011, the Joint Commission for health care institutions in the U.S. named us among the top 14 percent of the nation’s accredited hospitals, recognized for providing superior safety, quality and effectiveness. We’re very proud of that accomplishment, but we are not yet satisfied. That’s why we’ve committed to additional improvements including a three-year program in LEAN management principles to drive out waste and ensure that all work adds value. LEAN principles have been used in several industries to achieve superior customer service along with effective and efficient processes. And we’re focusing on growing our core leadership roles: We provide health care for all We’ve recently sought and received multi-year grants for health care initiatives ranging from heart attack prevention to colorectal cancer screening. Last year we established 11 Harm Reduction Teams to reduce incident rates for falls, pressure ulcers, readmissions, ventilator associated pneumonia and other conditions. We also decreased the mortality rate of severe sepsis, an infection complication, by 10 percent and saved more than 50 lives over the three-year period, ending 2011. We are a teaching institution We are viewed as leaders in emergency and trauma care – with performance that is competitive with top national providers – and more than 200 medical school graduates compete each year for ten coveted spots in our emergency medicine residency program. We continue to expand our role as a teaching institution that supports medical research and a wide range of educational programs and activities for medical students, interns, residents, and continuing education for medical, nursing and other staff. We are an employer of choice Our two-year labor agreement with the Service Employees International Union was approved by 98 percent of voting employees, creating good jobs and dedicated workers. In fact, our employees recently rated us in an Employee Partnership survey as having strengths in sensitivity to differences in the culturally diverse workforce and instilling pride in employees. We are a community partner We have a long and important history of being a leader in the community. Our Model Neighborhood Program was awarded $217,000 last year to provide internships, health education and career development. We also provided medical volunteers during the Avon Breast Cancer Walk, San Francisco AIDS Walk, Oakland Running Festival, and National Alliance on Mental Illness (NAMI) Walk for Wellness, and we participated in the “Every 15 Minutes Program” designed to dramatically instill in teenagers the dangers of drinking alcohol and driving. These are only a few of the many recent accomplishments for Alameda County Medical Center. We have momentum as we continue our mission of achieving excellence in how we deliver care. We also understand that our leadership must extend beyond our own doors and we hold ourselves accountable for continuing the critical role we play in Alameda County. As we transform our facilities and grow our services, we embrace the hopes and expectations of the community. We are building excellence, for today and tomorrow. ■ Wright L. Lassiter III is the chief executive officer of the Alameda County Medical Center.

March 2012 | 15


Health Care

> Samuel Merritt University plans library grand opening by Elizabeth Valente A grand opening ceremony will be held in the newly expanded John A. Graziano Memorial Library at Samuel Merritt University (SMU) on Thursday, March 15 beginning at 5 p.m.

The SMU library, located at 400 Hawthorne Ave. in Oakland, first opened its doors in 1984, thanks to the generous gift of Mrs. Louise F. Graziano in memory of her husband, John Angelo Graziano (1898-1966). At that time the library facility accommodated 400 students and 300 medical staff members as well as the East Bay community. Twenty-eight years later, through the same support and dedication from generous donors in the community, the SMU library can now comfortably accommodate the University’s growing population of more than 1,400 students as well as the extended SMU community. The library renovation and expansion was funded by contributions from the SMU community: alumni, foundations, corporations, employees, regents and friends of the University. “We are grateful to the SMU community for rallying together to meet this challenge,” said Sue Valencia, executive director of Development and Alumni Affairs. “The Library is an important resource for our students and faculty as well as the growing needs of local physicians and clinicians who use the library for medical and health care research. The library is open to the public and librarians are ready to help you research all health-

> Alta Bates Summit names Prosper new CEO Chuck Prosper has been named the new chief executive officer (CEO) of Alta Bates Summit Medical Center. Prosper Chuck Prosper has served as the medical center’s chief operating officer (COO) since October 2010. He will replace David Bradley, who will assume the position of president of the Sutter Health East Bay Region. Ed Berdick, the region’s first president, will become senior vice president for Shared Services at Sutter Health. “I have great respect and admiration for the excellent care Alta Bates Summit provides to its community,” Prosper said. “To be successful in the future, the medical center must find new ways to innovate in the delivery of care and to strengthen partnerships between physicians, employees and our community. I look forward to the challenges ahead and honoring our mission.” In a memo announcing the management changes, Sutter Health CEO Pat Fry said these changes ensure “a smooth transition of leadership in the East Bay.” Prosper joined Alta Bates Summit as interim COO in October 2010. Previously, he was chief administrative officer at (former Sutteraffiliated) Marin General Hospital where he had responsibility for all hospital operations and managed the transfer of the hospital from Sutter Health back to its health care district owner. Prosper earlier served as the assistant administrator for Ancillary and Support Services at the San Leandro Hospital Campus of Eden Medical Center.

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related topics.” As part of the library renovation project, several additions were made to provide office and work spaces. The North Wing now houses a new computer lab, a conference room, naturally lit study niches, and Library/Academic and Instructional Innovation staff offices. The main library has three new group study rooms and three new seminar rooms that are available to the campus community. Located in the Health Education Center on the University’s main campus, the expanded John A. Graziano Memorial Library is home to the recently combined Department of ▼ Library Director Marcus Banks (left) Library and Academic and makes a point with Samuel Merritt Instructional innovation. University nursing student Jabari Smith. In partnership with faculty, the department‘s mission is to promote innovative teaching methods, as well as the use of quality web-based educational resources. The combined skill sets of the University’s educational technologists, health science librarians and support staff is resulting in exciting new synergies. “This is an exciting venue – continued on page 19


Health Care

> Oakland nonprofit works to promote community mental health, wellness According to a 2010 UCLA study, one in five Californians are living with a mental health condition. Chances are you or someone you know is struggling with wellness. How do you provide an inviting and supportive space for customers, clients and employees? What do you as an employer or a manager need to know? Peers Envisioning and Engaging in Recovery Services, or PEERS, is offering a special training for businesses called the “Welcoming Community Certification.” The 90-minute workshop – open to businesses, nonprofits, faith leaders and housing programs – includes an introduction to tools and resources to increase employee morale, promote teamwork, and support wellness. “We’re targeting businesses because they are anchors of our community and their efforts to promote healthy practices will affect everyone,” said Sharon Kuehn, Social Inclusion program manager for PEERS. “Not only has research shown that supported employees are more productive (costing the business less in sick time and medical care), businesses that genuinely care about the well-being of their client base will build a positive reputation in the community and attract more visitors.” Two main tools will be introduced in the workshop, including Wellness Recovery Action Planning (WRAP) and emotional CPR (eCPR). Organizational

The sweet, retired couple that orders tomato-basil soup at their neighborhood sandwich shop every Tuesday. A tax preparer’s most loyal customer. The high school kids who work in the mechanic’s shop during summer break. Any one of these people could have a mental health challenge. Any one of them could walk into your business.

WRAP is an evidence-based system used worldwide by businesses and other organizations that want their staffs to attain the highest possible level of wellness. The process starts with identifying unique resources and wellness tools and expands to use those items to develop action plans. An action plan is a customized and self-determined series of steps that the organization can take to optimize and maintain the health and well-being of the entire group. Emotional CPR is an educational program designed to teach people to assist others through an emotional crisis. “Business owners have expressed the desire to learn to increase organizational wellness and know how to support and interact with staff and customers who may be struggling,” Kuehn said. PEERS has been advocating for people living with mental health conditions for ten years. Almost all the employees at PEERS are living with or in recovery of mental health issues, and demonstrate that people with mental health challenges can lead meaningful and productive lives. The Welcoming Community Certification is a project of the Alameda County Social Inclusion Campaign, a PEERS-led effort to end mental health stigma and discrimination. With the help of the Mental Health Services Act, or Proposition 63, and Alameda County Behavioral Health Care Services, PEERS hopes to make an impact on each sector of society and change misinformation around mental health and wellness to build an authentically inclusive community. At the end of the Welcoming Community Certification training, participants are awarded a certificate they can display in their business to show their support for promoting wellness and creating welcoming cultures in their workplace. Businesses that receive this certification will qualify for an onsite, customized consultation with the PEERS’ team of wellness recovery experts. The Welcoming Community Certification training is set to begin on April 18. Trainings will be held at the Oakland Metropolitan Chamber of Commerce. conference room. If you are interested in learning more, contact Social Inclusion Program Manager Sharon Kuehn at (510) 832-7337 or at ■

> The Welcoming Community Certification training is set to begin on April 18. Trainings will be held at the Oakland Metropolitan Chamber of Commerce conference room.

March 2012 | 17


Health Care

> What is palliative care? “Often, we were able to prevent these patients from dying,” he says, “but I felt like I was not really helping them as much as I could. I thought there must be a different approach for these patients. How can we improve their quality of life and give them as comfortable and comforting an experience as possible?” That inspiration ultimately led Dr. Stoneberg to specialize in palliative care, a highly respected branch of medicine that has emerged over the past 20 years and focuses largely on quality of life for patients facing a serious or chronic illness. In April 2011, he came to Alta Bates Summit, where he is medical director for the Palliative Care Service. Palliative care and hospice care “are on the same continuum of services,” explains Dr. Stoneberg, “except hospice care is for patients who have a terminal illness with a prognosis of six months or less. “Palliative care is not exclusionary of anybody,” he adds. “It’s really for anyone who is suffering from the symptoms or decline of a disease. Cancer patients and those with cardiac disease, kidney failure and Alzheimer’s are just a few examples of patients we care for. Our goal is to figure out what the patients want and how we can help their treating physicians take good care of them.” As a physician specializing in palliative care, Dr. Stoneberg does not replace other medical specialists. Instead, he often serves as the team leader to help better coordinate the patient’s care. “It’s very much a collaboration, an interdisciplinary team approach,” he says. “We use resources from the chaplaincy program, ▲ Jeffrey Stoneberg, D.O., medical director of social work program, Palliative Care Services at Alta Bates Summit nursing colleagues – Medical Center.

When Jeffrey Stoneberg, D.O., was a resident working in an intensive care unit at a Pennsylvania hospital, he was tending to very sick patients and was inspired to take a different strategy in their treatment.

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everything at our disposal that might benefit the patient. Anything that might be helpful is considered – whether it’s massage therapy, music therapy or other remedies. We often use the hospital’s resources beyond what might be considered conventional Western medical care.” At Alta Bates Summit, patients in critical care units are offered palliative care at the referral of their doctors. For more information or to find out if palliative care is right for you or a loved one, consult your attending physician or nurse. ■

> When in doubt, sit them out Since then, he has been speaking to young athletes, coaches, parents and the media about the dangers of concussions and how they should be handled. If a bump or blow to the head is combined with symptoms such as headaches, fuzzy vision, nausea, vomiting, dizziness, sensitivity to noise or light, fatigue or balance problems, a concussion is a possibility. If an athlete reports difficulty thinking clearly, concentrating or remembering, those may also be signs of a concussion. Sleeping more or less than usual may also signal the problem, as can unusual mood changes. All of these symptoms could appear immediately or even hours or days later, so an athlete should be watched closely for days after he or she suffers a blow to the head. Anyone who has suffered a concussion must be treated carefully because a second concussion can be life-threatening if it occurs before the first has healed, says Dr. Richardson. FYI: A California law, which goes into effect Jan. 1, prohibits any athlete from returning to a school-sponsored sport on the same day he or she suffers a suspected concussion. Under the new law, the athlete can’t be allowed to return to action without written clearance from a doctor. Get more information about kids and concussions at the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention website, HeadsUp/youth.html. ■ As an Alta Bates board-certified neurologist, Brian Richardson, M.D., has a professional interest in all forms of brain injuries, but when his son was playing high school football about five years ago, Dr. Richardson began to focus personal efforts on one particular issue: concussions.


Health Care

> Being unprepared A funeral director’s story about what happens when life throws a curve by Angela Caulboy Last summer a local funeral director received a call that her mother had passed away unexpectedly. As the family rushed around trying to prepare for the trip out of state, the funeral director worried that she had no idea what her mother’s final wishes were. Nothing had ever been discussed. Her mother had always been on a fixed income so it would be up to the children to pay for everything. Through the grief and shock of losing their mother, the siblings came together at the funeral home to discuss arrangements – the funeral director was now on the other side of things. Trying to discuss what the family “thought” their loved one would want was one of the hardest things they had to do, because What happens when the person who is supposed to help make funeral arrangements is on the opposite end of the desk, and it’s he or she who is in need of guidance, direction, compassion and empathy?

the grief, hurt and pain was so raw it took hours to discuss and come to decisions about burial or cremation, what color casket their mother would like, open or closed casket, church service or not, along with many minor details – and finally, how were they going to pay for everything – which totaled up to be $7,500 (not including the burial plot)? How can a family come up with that type of money on such short notice (payment was due before the services were held)? This funeral director who once merely counseled and spoke to families about pre-planning for this such an event had humbly learned the true value of pre-planning – once laid out it not only gives the individual peace of mind, but it also allows loved ones the time and space to properly grieve without having to make difficult decisions. For most of us, thinking about our own death is a scary subject, but by pre-planning your funeral now, you will help your family when the time arrives. Pre-arrangement relieves your family of having to make important decisions, spares your loved ones from financial worry or limitations, and protects from the cost of inflation during a period of great stress and grief. The largest advantage of pre-planning is that you are helping your family with every detail being arranged according to your wishes. With pre-arrangement – even if only partially – you remove that stress from them. Remember, when the time comes the members of the family will be grief stricken and may not be thinking clearly. By planning your funeral in advance, you will help ease their burden. Albert Brown Mortuary in Oakland offers a free planning guide and low monthly payments to fit everyone’s budget, so if you or someone you know is interested, please call (510) 652-1873 or stop by the office at 3476 Piedmont Ave. ■ Angela Caulboy is funeral director at Albert Brown Mortuary in Oakland and is also co-chair of the Chamber’s Ambassador Committee.

> Last beam placed on Alta Bates Summit Medical Center Alta Bates Summit Medical Center’s Summit Campus in Oakland celebrated an important milestone in a topping out ceremony on Feb. 28.

Hundreds of construction workers, employees, physicians and staff of the East Bay’s largest not-forprofit hospital gathered next to the skeleton of the new 11-story structure and cheered as the last beam rose into place. Painted white and signed by attendees, the 18-foot beam was raised to the top of the new Patient Care Pavilion by a 250-foot tower crane. “Today marks the celebration of a traditional construction milestone in what has been anything but a traditional project,” said Jay Widdifield, project manager for DPR Construction. Part of the Sutter Health network of care, Alta Bates Summit’s Patient Care Pavilion is being built on a 1.5-acre site in the middle of the hospital’s campus in Oakland, which has remained fully operational during construction. The new facility will be attached to the existing hospital buildings on three sides and seven different floors. “We’re extremely grateful to the hundreds of iron workers and construction teams who have worked tirelessly to keep this important project on schedule,” said Chuck Prosper, chief executive officer of Alta Bates Summit. “Construction on this health care asset began about one year ago and is a source of great pride for all of us. Our entire community will benefit from its state-of-the-art technology, family friendly and healing environment.” The 250,000-square-foot building is slated to open in early 2014. Designed by Devenney Group, Ltd., the $300 million project is funded completely by Sutter Health and Alta Bates Summit Medical Center – with no cost to local taxpayers – as a commitment to health care in the greater East Bay. An additional $50 million was used to build a 1,000-space parking structure set to open in May. The new pavilion and garage are one of four Sutter Health hospitals currently under construction – Sutter Medical Center (Santa Rosa), Eden Medical Center (Castro Valley), Sutter Medical Center (Sacramento) and Alta Bates Summit. The topping out tradition is a cherished custom in the construction industry signaling that the skeleton of a new structure is completed and has reached its maximum height. ■

> SMU library opening – continued from page 16

for collaboration between librarians, educational technologists, students and faculty. We’ve designed this space to support seminar-style teaching and group study, while providing convenient access to experts in research support and course design,” said Marcus Banks, director. For more information call (510) 869-8900 or visit ■ Elizabeth Valente is the associate director of publications and media relations at Samuel Merritt University.

March 2012 | 19


Health Care

> Families and friends use hearts

> An open letter from Alameda

and feet to fight cancer

County Health Care Foundation

by Angela Caulboy

by Debra A. Barnes

Walkers will go around the clock in the battle against cancer when the 8th annual American Cancer Society’s Relay For Life® of Oakland gets underway with teams of residents gathering at Bishop O’Dowd High School on Saturday, July 28 at 10 a.m.

Relay For Life events are held overnight as individuals and teams camp out at an athletic track, park or other gathering area, with the goal of keeping at least one team member on the track or pathway at all times throughout the evening. Teams do most of their fundraising prior to the event, but some teams also hold creative fundraisers at their camp sites. Relay brings together friends, families, businesses, hospitals, schools, faith-based groups – people from all walks of life – all aimed at furthering the American Cancer Society’s efforts to save lives by helping people stay well, by helping them get well, by finding cures and by fighting back.

Relay is a unique opportunity for our community to come together to celebrate people who have battled cancer, remember those we’ve lost, and fight back against the disease. Many of the participants are cancer survivors, which serves as a reminder that Oakland is not immune to this disease and that by participating in Relay, we are joining with the American Cancer Society’s efforts to create a world with less cancer and more birthdays. Funds raised at Oakland’s Relay For Life enable the American Cancer Society to impact the lives of those touched by cancer within the community by offering programs like “Look Good…Feel Better,” support groups, classes on early detection and health living, along with transportation and medical supplies all offered at local hospitals. One of the most memorable events during the Relay is the Luminaria Ceremony, which takes place after sundown, honoring the community’s cancer survivors and remembering those lost to the disease. Participants will circle a track that is surrounded with glowing luminaria that bears the name of someone who has battled cancer. Luminaria bags may be purchased for $10 by calling (510) 258-3458 or by visiting Relay for Life of Oakland urges local companies to help support the fight against cancer in their communities by becoming sponsors of the event. Cancer touches everyone, and involvement in Relay For Life is a great way for companies to demonstrate their commitment to help the fight back against the disease, save lives and create a world with less cancer. Many options for corporate sponsorship are available, including forming a team, providing in-kind donations of goods, purchasing event sponsor signs for track display, encouraging employees to volunteer at events, and collecting Relay donations at places of business. For more information, visit or contact me at or at (510) 258-3458. ■ Angela Caulboy, the funeral director at Albert Brown Mortuary in Oakland, is volunteer event chair for Relay for Life and is also co-chair of the Chamber’s Ambassador Committee.

As the new executive director of the Alameda County Health Care Foundation (ACHCF), I want to take this opportunity to thank the business community for its support. Your corporate grants, event sponsorships, and in-kind donations to ACHCF in the past have helped us raise millions of dollars for vital program and equipment needs at Alameda County Medical Center. Clearly you believe that a strong local economy relies on having a healthy citizenry. Oakland can be proud in knowing that it is home to a medical center so advanced that it routinely trains tomorrow’s doctors today as the only community-based teaching hospital with residents in primary care, surgery, gastroenterology and dentistry, to name a few. Our medical staff is among the best. Also a jewel to the community is a Trauma Center that stands ready 24/7 when accidents occur on the job, on the playground, at home, or in transit at Oakland International Airport, the Port of Oakland, or on freeways, BART or AC transit. Gifts from the business community and others have helped: • Fund the Youth Violence Prevention Program pioneered at our Medical Center to break the cycle of violent trauma, retribution and re-injury, or even death, in our local youth. It is a nationwide model now used by 20 inner city ERs. • Create the Cancer Navigator Program to help patients and families access care. • Purchase equipment and construction materials to build a Cardiac Angiography Suite. Yes, you have made a difference in the health of Oakland and Alameda County in more ways than one. I am honored to be a member of the Oakland Metropolitan Chamber of Commerce and renewed the Foundation’s membership the first week I arrived in my new position. As a former graduate of Leadership San Francisco, I know that Chambers are only as strong as the member volunteers engaged in them, and I look forward to meeting you all. Thank you. ■ Debra A. Barnes is the executive director of the Alameda County Health Care Foundation.

> Join Meals on Wheels for ‘Five Star Night’ April 27 by Cindy Houts I want to tell you about a senior who is close to our hearts. Eighty-two (82)-year-old Lois is one of those ladies that would be called “spunky.”

Quick with a laugh, no joke gets past her. She raised four children, and enjoys visits with the grandchildren. But they live far away, and the visits are few and far between. Her hip is acting up again, making her gait slow and deliberate. She used to walk to her grocery store every day to pick up food for her supper, but these days it’s just too much. She spends much of her time alone, and the isolation has had an impact on her formerly sunny outlook. A neighbor urged Lois to make the call to Meals on Wheels. Now, Lois enjoys her daily visit from Joe, her Meals on Wheels delivery driver. With the good nutrition from her meal, she is stronger and able to take better care of herself. Lois is more connected to the outside world, and has a smile to share again. And her out-of-state family has peace of mind knowing she is checked on every day. It’s easy to think that the problems of today are just too big to solve. In the case of senior hunger, help is easier to provide than you may know. Thirty dollars ($30) feeds a senior for a week. The programs of Alameda County deliver almost 2,500 meals each weekday to seniors in our area. The great majority are over 75 years old, and over half live alone. Many struggle with how to pay for both food and medicine. Each meal costs approximately $6 to make and deliver. A year’s worth of meals costs less than one day in the hospital. Meals on Wheels is an economical safety net that keeps seniors healthy and living independently in their own homes, where they want to be. How you can help Become a sponsor of Five Star Night. The 25th annual Five Star Night will be held this year at the Scottish Rite Center on April 27. Celebrity Chef Narsai David is the emcee, guiding guests through each aspect of the night. Five Star Night offers attendees the unique opportunity to taste creations from the East Bay’s top culinary talents all in one location. There are many benefits enjoyed by our sponsors, with several levels to choose from. Sponsor a table, invite your VIP clients or treat your employees to a night they will always remember. ■

Cindy Houts is the executive director of Alameda County Meals on Wheels.

20 | OBR Oakland Business Review |


Health Care

> Ramsell – Serving the underserved since 1964 by Eric Flowers For nearly 50 years, Oakland-based Ramsell has been creating positive outcomes for the health and safety of underserved populations, with a relentless focus on patient access to medications. Ramsell, which operates The Apothecary community pharmacy, also provides public health solutions across several states, and assists corrections with discharge planning and parolee management. Ramsell’s passion is to connect people to the resources and medications they need for a better life. In 1972, Ramsell’s founder, Sylester Flowers, worked with San Francisco’s Department of Mental Health to address the city’s opiate drug abuse epidemic and was appointed pharmacy director. In 1992, he developed a prescription drug program for San Francisco County residents with HIV and AIDS. A year later, Ramsell implemented the AIDS Drug Assistance Program (ADAP) in the county. ADAPs apply state and federal funds available through Ryan White CARE legislation to provide most HIV medications at low or no cost to qualified patients. Ramsell has also managed 340B Drug Pricing Programs for ADAPs since 1992, as part of the Public Health Service Act (PHSA), which requires drug manufacturer discounts for programs that receive federal support and serve patients with specific conditions. Within five years, Ramsell consolidated all of the county ADAPs under one centralized program for the California Department of Health Services. Today, Ramsell manages over a third of all ADAP claims nationwide, managing patient eligibility and enrollment, pharmacy networks, claims processing, and a call center for support. Ramsell also provides Medication Therapy Management (MTM) services to patients with complex conditions, including an HIV/AIDS-focused program for its ADAP clients. MTM is a mandated program for Medicare Part D plans, and has been growing in popularity among other plan types. MTM was designed to ensure patients take the right drugs at the right time to properly manage their conditions, as up to half of patients do not take their prescriptions correctly, which has been estimated to cost nearly $300 billion a year in medical expenditures. MTM helps standardize quality interventions, improve clinical outcomes and control costs. With its passion to connect people to the resources they need, Ramsell branched out to assist correctional facilities with health care programs and discharge planning and parolee management. With one out of 31 adults in America incarcerated or on probation or parole, states are challenged to reduce spending and high recidivism

▲ Ramsell Corporation was a major rates, manage overcrowding, and imsponsor of the “Remember Them: prove public safety. Each year, more than Champions for Humanity” monument, 95 percent of prisoners return to their which was unveiled in September 2011. communities, and correctional agencies For Ramsell, the decision to support this must coordinate re-entry and supervise work is based on CEO Eric Flowers’ belief offenders once released. that the monument – those who are Ramsell provides discharge planners represented, and what they stand a tool that matches inmates with for – reflects the company’s belief that resources tailored to specific needs, and everyone can be a hero. Ramsell’s facilitates discharge coordination with commitment to Oakland and to serving the underserved is as steadfast as the community-based organizations. Upon monument. Pictured at the studio of release, parolees are matched with Chiodo Art Development (left to right) services for health care, housing, are “Remember Them” creator and employment, substance abuse, mental sculptor Mario Chiodo, Ramsell founder health and other social services. The and chairman of the board Sylester exchange of information improves postFlowers, and Ramsell President and CEO release continuity of care, and increases Eric Flowers (holding Zachariah Flowers). parolees’ chances for success, and reduces recidivism and total costs. The Apothecary pharmacy continues in its tradition of providing personalized, professional, and caring service in the Eastmont Town Center, and sponsors an annual health fair, which provides free screenings, exams, and access to resources. This year, The Apothecary Health Fair will be held on Sept. 15, and promises to offer a range of services through broad city and county partnerships. Ramsell has been an active supporter of East Bay organizations, and was a major sponsor of the “Remember Them: Champions for Humanity” monument. Throughout its 50-year history, Ramsell has always stayed, and will continue to stay, true to its mission: caring about community. ■ Eric Flowers is the president and chief executive officer of Ramsell Corporation, located near Jack London Square. He is a passionate advocate for community health issues, and serves on the boards of Haight Ashbury Free Clinics-Walden House, the ADAP Advocacy Association (aaa+), and St. Mary’s College School of Economics and Business Administration.

March 2012 | 21

> Leadership looks at arts, education

> Learning about boards

by Luis Aguilar, Lily Marquez and Ryan Rubio

and commissions

Last month Leadership Oakland participants had the opportunity to learn about education and art programs that exist in the Oakland community. The group also had the opportunity to learn about higher education from representatives of a local, private and public institution. The session was held at one of Oakland’s great treasures, the Oakland Museum of California. To begin the day, Lori Fogarty, the director and chief executive officer of the museum, gave an overview about the Oakland museum, its collections, the administration, and milestones that have transformed its wonderful art history. The first guest speaker of the day was Dr. Elnora Webb, president of Laney College. Dr. Webb discussed the “power of education,” which really inspired the group. She also talked about how Laney is a leader in academic and vocational education and highlighted some on the programs that are currently being offered. The public institution currently has more than 14,000 students. The second speaker was Dr. Craig Elliot, assistant vice president of Enrollment and Student Services from Samuel Merritt University. He gave a presentation that focused on “Transformative Learning: Education in the 21st Century.” As part of an exercise, Leadership participants were asked to discuss

▲ At Art and Education Day, Dr. Elnora in groups and come up with ways Webb, president of Laney College (second in which each one can take part in from the right) is welcomed by their community and be a leader as Leadership participants (left to right) well as be more engaged and move Luis Aguilar, Lily Ana Marquez and Ryan Rubio. education forward. The participants then welcomed Amana Harris, associate director of Attitudinal Healing Connection, a nonprofit located in West Oakland. She discussed the organization’s principles and the education programs that serve many of the Oakland Unified School District students. One of the programs highlighted was an art and literacy program, ArtEsteem. As part of the presentation, Harris shared many samples of art created by students. The group was amazed at how creative children can be if they have the inspiration, education and resources – reinforcing why art is essential and needs to be part of the curriculum in all public schools. One of the highlights of the day was a docent-led highlight tour of Gallery of California Art. The group was able to see the wonderful art pieces that the Oakland Museum had in several different displays. Following the tour, the group benefited from another great speaker, Michael Fried, the executive director of Cantare con Vivo. He talked about the organization and featured one of its programs, the Children’s Choir of Oakland, which provides free quality music education weekly for more than 1,300 underserved Oakland students. This was an eye opener to many Leadership participants – we saw how music has become an important part of a student’s life and has allowed him or her to be socially active and involved in such a positive extra-curricular activity. The day couldn’t have ended any better – the last presenter had Leaders participants involved in an activity that gave everyone a sense of what it is to be an artist. The concept of the activity was “creative education.” This part of the session was led by Margo Dunlap, executive director of ProArts and by Susannah Wood from SWEET Theatre. Like the other nonprofit art education providers, they also talked about the importance of art in schools. Dunlap discussed the role of ProArts as a nonprofit that provides critical access to contemporary art in the Bay Area through its independent curated exhibitions, capacity-building artist services, open studios and juried programs, and diverse collaborative programs. ■ Luis Aguilar is program associate at the East Bay Community Foundation, Lily Marquez is a financial aid counselor at Samuel Merritt University, and Ryan Rubio is director of sales and operations at Goodwill Industries. All are members of Leadership Oakland.

22 | OBR Oakland Business Review |

by Jamil Akoni, Sofia Navarro and Dale Marie Golden

Leadership Oakland 2012 participants recently had an engaging and informative session on the topic of “Boards and Commissions.” The conversation was led by Darien Louie, director of Public and Private Partnerships for the East Bay Community Foundation, and Zach Wasserman, attorney and partner at Wendel, Rosen, Black & Dean LLP. The half-day session covered the role that boards of directors and commissions play in the building of Oakland’s future, as well as the importance of participating on those entities. It was emphasized, in fact, that a key outcome of the Leadership Oakland program is to develop future participants by providing a broadbased knowledge of Oakland. The day began with an overview of the role that nonprofit board of directors and commission members are asked to fulfill. Wasserman and Louie shared their knowledge of specific responsibilities and expectations associated with being on a board or commission. Those responsibilities include – but are not limited to – meeting requirements, level of financial contributions, level of activity, addressing potential conflicts of interest, legal obligation, fundraising, general oversight, and agency representation. Wasserman and Louie discussed ways of getting on various boards and commissions – being appointed, being sought out, or soliciting. Appointments are more typical with commissions (although there are a few elected positions) and often require a greater level of visibility to city officials. Being sought out is generally the case when an organization is in need of board members. When this is the case, sitting board members reach out to their networks to try and fill the vacancies. In addition to learning about the expectations and obligations of being on a board or commission, Wasserman and Louie stated important factors to consider before sitting or applying – identify the reasons you want to be on a board or commission, and identify your strengths. Finally, if you are interested in sitting on a particular board, you can also solicit it directly. This requires patience and timing as your request needs to be during a time when there is a vacancy and it’s important that your skill set meets the need. As the session closed, the Leadership Oakland team was inspired and motivated to serve on a board and continue to help Oakland prosper and shine. As Senator Robert Kennedy said, “It is more important to be of service than successful.” ■ Jamil Akoni is project manager for Kaiser Permanente, Sofia Navarro is director of Workforce Development at The Unity Council, and Dale Marie Golden is vice president of Torrey Pines Bank. All three are members of Leadership Oakland.

> A tasty mixer with a view

Scott’s serves the finest cuisine with a professional, courteous staff ready to make your dining experience a memorable occasion. Whether you visit for lunch, dinner or champagne jazz brunch, your dining experience promises to be as delicious as it is memorable. And if you’re interested in a meeting, Scott’s has seven different banquet rooms – some with waterfront views – from which to choose. Pictured at the mixer, which was held in conjunction with the African-American Chamber of Commerce, includes Scott’s General Manager Ramiro Carabez (fourth from the right), Wil Hardee (third from the left), president and chief executive officer of the African-American Chamber, and Metro Chamber President Joe Haraburda (center). Others include Scott’s representatives and members of the Chamber Board of Directors – Eric Kisshauer (far right, Pankow Builders) and Charissa Frank (Swinerton Builders, third from the right). ■

The Chamber’s After Five Reception for February was held at Scott’s Seafood Grill & Bar in Jack London Square, which has been serving fresh seafood for more than 30 years.

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.

Inside Oakland Breakfast Forum

Economic Development Forum | March 14, 3 - 4:30 p.m.

| March 23, 8:30 - 10 a.m.

Economic value of East Bay Regional Parks

Guest speaker Oakland City Councilmember Pat Kernighan

East Bay Women in Business luncheon | April 6 | Guest speaker Terri Swartz, dean of the College of Business & Economics at California State University, East Bay

Keeping you connected and informed



14 | Ambassador Committee meeting | noon - 1 p.m. E X ECUTI V E COM MI T 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 MARK EVERTON Waterfront Hotel / Miss Pearl’s Jam House 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

20 | Nonprofit Roundtable Committee meeting

| 2:30 - 4:30 p.m. 22 | After Five Reception

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

23 | Inside Oakland Breakfast Forum | 8:30 - 10 a.m.



TERRY BRADY Securitas Security Services

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


an update of Chamber activities for prospective, new and long-time members, hosted by Hilliard Management Group

IKE MMEJE Alta Bates Summit Medical Center


KIM DELEVETT Southwest Airlines

15 | Breakfast at the Chamber

| 7:30 - 9 a.m.


NATHANIEL OUBRE, JR. Kaiser Permanente

ANA CHRETIEN ABC Security Service

featuring a distinguished panel of senior East Bay Regional Park District officials for a discussion on the economic value of the parks

JDB Event Center, 2500 Embarcadero, no charge for Chamber members, $15 for non-members


DAVE CANNON Barney & Barney LLC

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


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.

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.

26 | After Five Reception

17 | Breakfast at the Chamber

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

| 7:30 - 9 a.m.

Scottish Rite Center, 1547 Lakeside Drive, facing Lake Merritt, no charge for Chamber members, $15 for non-members

an update of Chamber activities for prospective, new and long-time members, sponsored by Carolyn’s Marketing Services

27 | Inside Oakland Breakfast Forum | 8:30 - 10 a.m.

24 | After Five Reception

featuring guest speaker Alameda City Manager John Russo, no charge for Chamber members, $10 for non-members

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


25 | Inside Oakland Breakfast Forum | 8:30 - 10 a.m.


4 | 3rd annual Economic Development & half-day Summit reception, “Oakland: Heart of the MegaRegion,” | noon - 6:30 p.m. Jack London Square Market Building (55 Harrison St.),

9 | Ambassador Committee meeting | noon - 1 p.m. 15 | Nonprofit Roundtable Committee meeting

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

no charge for Chamber members, $10 for non-members

25 | Chamber Night with the A’s, Oakland vs New York Yankees

| game begins at 7:05 p.m. with seats almost directly behind home plate, some of the best seats at (Oakland) Coliseum, with a fireworks show following the game, tickets $40 per person for Chamber members, $50 per person for non-members

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

featuring guest speaker Oakland City Councilmember Pat Kernighan, no charge for Chamber members, $10 for nonmembers



6 | East Bay Women in Business Roundtable luncheon

| 11:30 a.m. - 1:30 p.m. featuring guest speaker Terri Swartz, dean of the College of Business & Economics at California State University, East Bay, Waterfront Hotel in Jack London Square, $35 for Chamber members, $45 for nonmembers, $10 late registration fee after April 4

11 | Ambassador Committee meeting | noon - 1 p.m. 11 | Economic Development Forum | 3 - 4:30 p.m. featuring Doug Johnson of the Metropolitan Transportation Commission (MTC) discussing “Update on Plan Bay Area: A Regional Land Use and Transportation Plan to 2040”

17 | Nonprofit Roundtable Committee meeting

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


HANK MASLER, (510) 874-4808

19 | Breakfast at the Chamber |

| 7:30 - 9 a.m.

Design/Production Editor


an update of Chamber activities for prospective, new and long-time members, sponsored by Fountain Café

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

March 2012 | 23


The Oakland Restaurant Association

> Chef’s / Owner’s Corner – Faz Poursohi Faz Restaurant • 1111 Broadway (510) 272-1111 • BACKGROUND The success of Faz Poursohi, the owner of Faz in the lobby of 1111 Broadway in downtown Oakland, is based on his love of food and cooking that he acquired growing up in Tehran. His family took culinary matters seriously and their table was always laid with freshly baked breads, fruits and vegetables from the family farm. He owns and operates restaurants in Danville, Pleasanton, Silicon Valley and Palo Alto. First job? Working on my family’s farm growing organic produce and cattle. Residence? Danville, CA BUSINESS STRATEGY How’s business? Business is growing every day. Of course it is challenging at times, but our goal is to remain positive and continue to move forward. Biggest challenge? Conveying to our customers the excitement and passion we have for our healthy Mediterranean cuisines. Personal goal yet to be achieved? I actually have two personal goals. 1) Becoming a major contributor in bringing the best of food and beverage to the hotel industry. 2) Expand our business to own and operate Mediterranean organic sidewalk cafes. People like to work for me because? Let me ask my staff – “Faz is a REAL guy. He first and foremost cares for the well being of all his employees. He realizes that we are all here to do a very important job, and holds us each accountable for our part. He also realizes that we all have lives outside of work, and he greatly respects that.” Mentor? Richard Mellman of “Lettuce Entertain You” in Chicago, and Larry Mindell of Spectrum Foods and Il Fornaio. What do you like most about your job? Feeding people. I have a beautiful job. It gives me an opportunity to make people happy three times a day – breakfast, lunch and dinner. If you do this with integrity and honesty it makes for a beautiful combination. What do you like least about your job? Long hours. Best meal/dish you ever created and to whom was it served? Starting the tradition of flat bread in San Francisco. We were one of the only restaurants in the 80s serving fresh warm flat bread. Most respected competitor? I don’t view this as a competition. I look at this as a team effort – we have a lot of good chefs trying to bring great food to many.

PREFERENCES Stranded on a desert island; what cookbook would you want? Food of Life by Najmieh Batmanglij. Lunch with Julia Child - one question for her? How did you bring French food to such a large scale in the U.S? Favorite cause? Supporting our local farmers and families. Favorite movie? The Thornbirds. Favorite restaurant? Chez Panisse, by Alice Waters. Favorite way to spend spare time? With wife and family. What’s on your iPod? Classical & European. Automobile? Anything that allows me to haul produce in the back. ■

> Restaurateurs are a vital part of our community by Mark Everton This column in past editions has covered restaurant-related topics that included how restaurants help our Oakland environment by using organic products and how Oakland restaurants recycle, compost and re-use waste oil to improve the quality of life. The recent publicity surrounding the Occupy Oakland events and the heightened awareness of the 99 percent differentiation heightens the awareness of how imbedded Oakland restaurants are in the 99 percent. Oakland has more than 700 restaurants, according to the restaurant list maintained by Visit Oakland. Assuming that the average restaurant employs 10-15 people, Oakland restaurants account for 7,000-10,500 employees. Most restaurant employees earn an hourly wage that is near the minimum wage. Using the 10,500 employee figure and assuming most workers work an average of 30 hours per week at $10 per hour, Oakland restaurants account for approximately $163,000,000 in wages. Yes, that is $163 million in wages that stays primarily in Oakland. Given the modest wage most restaurant workers earn, most live nearby the restaurants where they work. An Oakland employer with 10,500 employees paying $163 million in wages would make that employer rank as one of the largest employers in the city. Clearly the annual wage of most restaurant workers puts them smack in the middle of the 99 percent classification. It may be said that local restaurants are the largest 99 percent employer in Oakland. Miss Pearl’s Restaurant and Lounge, located in Jack London Square, experienced a catastrophic flood in late October. The restaurant was closed for four months. The 60 or so employees of the restaurant were facing the prospect of not having viable employment through the holiday season and into February. Miss Pearl’s and the Waterfront Hotel continued to pay all of the restaurant employees their regular wages plus the tips that they would have earned during the four-month shut-down. The 60 families that relied on the wage earners that are employed at Miss Pearl’s to pay rent and mortgages, to purchase food and clothing from Oakland stores, to make car payments and purchase gasoline from Oakland stations, were relieved that wages were continued throughout the shut-down. It is easy to overlook the importance that restaurants have. Oakland restaurants bring people into the city from all over the Bay Area. Michael LeBlanc at Pican believes that 45 percent of his clients come “across the bridge or through the tunnel.” The money that these visitors bring stays here through wages paid to workers at Oakland’s restaurants. Supplies, food, decorations, musicians, florists, and laundries all benefit from successful Oakland restaurants and they in turn consistently employ residents in their businesses. The New York Times recently ranked Oakland as one of the top five cities to visit in the world. A major basis for selecting Oakland was the influence that Oakland’s culinary renaissance is having. We are blessed with some world-class restaurants in Oakland and with scores of family-owned specialty neighborhood restaurants that provide a vital link to the Bay Area and the world. The importance of Oakland as a great place to visit and an exceptional place to dine is overshadowed, at times, by the constant media portrayal of Oakland’s crimes and coverage of the Occupy Oakland events. Oaklanders need to support our city as a great place to visit, work, live, shop and dine. We can do that by supporting local restaurants. Use an Oakland restaurant to cater your next event. Grab a to-go meal from an Oakland restaurant the next time it’s your turn to “do dinner” at home. Show off Oakland restaurants to your out-of-town clients. Our restaurants are forefront in improving the quality of life in Oakland, and the more we support them the better the quality of many lives will be. ■ Mark Everton, the executive director of the Waterfront Hotel and Miss Pearl’s, is co-chair of the Oakland Restaurant Association.

> Miss Pearl’s – Southern Heat. Oakland Cool. After experiencing a devastating flood in October, Miss Pearl’s in Jack London Square re-opened on Fat Tuesday. The Mardi Gras celebration was enjoyed by more than 400 loyal Miss Pearl’s fans who had waited patiently for the re-opening. The extensive remodel that was precipitated by the flood damage includes all new furnishings in the lounge and restaurant. The contemporary look and feel has transformed Miss Pearl’s from its island roots to a very hip Southern gathering spot for casual Southern dining and libations. Seldom is a restaurant afforded the opportunity to reset itself by a complete transformation of the décor, menus and ambiance. Miss Pearl’s new look, feel and vibe are wonderful compliments to the Southern-inspired menu and specialty drinks. In addition to Miss Pearl’s famous Creole Gumbo, the menu also offers 9-Spiced Blackened Catfish, Georgia Shrimp and Grits, and Niman Ranch Smokey BBQ Ribs. The lounge now offers an extensive bourbon selection and signature cocktails such as Miss Pearl’s Hurricane, Mississippi Punch and Mint Julep. The restoration includes bringing back Oakland’s premier Sunday Brunch either indoors or a relaxing Sunday morning spent on Miss Pearl’s patio overlooking the bay. Visit for Information, menus and reservations.

OBR March 2012  

OBR March 2012

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