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Four powerful, provocative Chamber events

Antwan Wilson discusses Pathway to Excellence Page 7

Making Mayor Schaaf’s dreams a reality Page 18

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MILLS COLLEGE PRESIDENT to speak at Women in Business luncheon

August 2015 ABOUT TOWN – NEWS FROM THE BIDs Page 24

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Oakland Business Review

Visit for more business opportunities, news and event registration.

> Chamber receives three-year grant to prepare our youth for college and career – by Barbara Leslie, President and CEO, Oakland Metropolitan Chamber of Commerce fter many months of partnership and collaboration with Oakland, West Contra Costa and San Lorenzo Unified school districts, the Peralta Community College District, the Oakland and Regional Workforce Investment boards and a myriad of other regional education Barbara Leslie and workforce leaders, we are thrilled to announce that the Chamber has been officially awarded a three-year grant by the James Irvine Foundation to develop a Linked Learning HUB of Excellence; a regional, replicable model to more deeply connect education and industry to


strengthen and expand Linked Learning opportunities for young people. Linked Learning is a proven approach that is transforming education for California students by integrating rigorous academics with career-based learning and real world workplace experiences. Linked Learning ignites high school students’ passions by creating meaningful learning experiences through career-oriented pathways. When students love what they’re learning, they work harder, dream bigger, and learn more. Through the Linked Learning HUB of Excellence, the Chamber will continue to support the efforts of our education partners while working to more fully integrate work-based learning opportunities for students. Additional staff will be hired at the Chamber with the express goal of better linking education – continued on page 3

> Solar power shines bright for these local businesses Editor’s note: Representatives from Sungevity will present a discussion on “What’s Your Solar Strategy?” at the Chamber’s Economic Development Forum on Wednesday, Sept. 9 from 3 to 4:30 p.m.


fter successfully growing its residential business across 12 states and the District of Columbia, Oakland-based Sungevity recently announced that it would expand into the commercial market, with a focus on small businesses. Chief Development Officer Dave Dunlap says, “Small businesses have been an underserved market segment. Solar can significantly reduce electricity costs and lessen the volatility and unpredictability of future electric rate increases.” Mark Figone, president of East Bay Sanitary in El Cerrito, wasn’t sure if solar would make financial sense for his business. “My only hesitation had to do with finances. But I looked at the package Sungevity offered and with all of the offsets, it worked out.” Figone continues, “Going solar gives my company an edge by being environmental and sustainable. And I’m saving money.” Most businesses with an average monthly electric bill of $500 or more can lower their energy cost with solar and reduce uncertainly about future energy costs. Even more exciting are many new options for small business owners to finance a commercial solar system. No longer do you need to have a pile of cash to go solar; there are now many new financing options which allow businesses to pay for solar including loans, leases, and “property assessed” programs. Connie Walker is the controller at Ponder Environmental in Benicia, another Sungevity business customer. She says it was an easy decision to go solar with Sungevity. “We were paying a large amount for electricity and had a sunny roof. From being in the industry, I knew Sungevity and the company’s excellent reputation. It was important to us to go with a company that we knew would have a commitment to customer service if we needed it.” And the impact? Walker says, “Our utility bill has gone down by about 80 percent since we installed solar.” Find out how much your business can save. Contact Sungevity at www.sungevity ▲ Patrick Hyde, owner of Hyde Printing and .com/business to get started. ■ Graphics in Concord, with his Sungevity solar system.


Provocative, exciting upcoming events Don’t miss the Chamber’s robust Public Policy and Economic Development programming.

The Chamber has scheduled four outstanding events this fall – events that are informative and provocative. Make plans to join us. The events are: • Economic Development Forum – “What’s Your Solar Strategy,” featuring representatives from Sungevity, Wednesday, Sept. 9 • Oaklanders Talk Tech, featured speakers include Mayor Libby Schaaf, Christopher Thornberg of Beacon Economics, and Pandora CFO Mike Herring, as well as tech entrepreneurs discussing “Key priorities for developing Oakland’s technology ecosystem,” hosted by Pandora (2100 Franklin St., 7th floor), with major sponsor Comcast and panel sponsor Donahue Fitzgerald LLP, Friday, Sept. 11 • Inside Oakland “The State of the State,” featuring Assemblymembers Rob Bonta and Tony Thurmond, and State Senator Loni Hancock, Friday, Sept. 25 • Women in Business luncheon, featuring Mills College President Alecia DeCoudreaux, speaking on “An Inspiring Leader’s Keys to Success,” Friday, Oct. 2. See page 5 for details. ■

> Update on OUSD Pathway to Excellence

Antwan Wilson

Superintendent of Schools Antwan Wilson worked to develop a plan to fulfill his vision that every student graduates ready for college, career, and community success. That plan, Pathway to Excellence 2015-2020, was crafted with input from business and community, and adopted unanimously. Read how this 3-point plan has been successful. See page 7.


Names in the news • Twenty-four-year Wells Fargo veteran Micky Randhawa has been named president of the newly expanded Greater Bay market which includes 1,650 team members and has 94 retail banking stores. The Greater Bay market now combines the former Mount Diablo market (Contra Costa, Solano and San Joaquin counties), and the former East Bay market (Alameda, west Micky Randhawa Contra Costa and north Santa Clara counties). Randhawa serves on the board of the Oakland Metropolitan Chamber of Commerce and the California State University East Bay Educational Foundation. He is actively involved with Alameda County Education Foundation and Junior Achievement. • Colliers International Oakland has welcomed Matthew Nebel to its team. Nebel specializes in the sales and leasing of office and office R&D properties. Prior to Colliers, he worked at Equistone Partners, leading the Tenant Representation Practice Group in the negotiation of leases, subleases, lease restructures and building sales/purchases. Nebel's experience Matthew Nebel also includes providing strategic planning and advisory services to new and existing businesses and technology start-ups. • Community Bank of the Bay has announced that John Barr has joined the bank as chief credit officer. He will be responsible for all aspects of the bank’s lending and credit administration. Prior to joining the bank Barr served as chief credit officer of Pleasanton-based Valley Community Bank where he set and oversaw specific strategic objectives to successfully improve asset quality, John Barr significantly reducing the bank's exposure in its loan portfolio. • The Alameda County Community Food Bank has announced new appointments to its Board of Directors. Jennifer Cabalquinto is chief financial officer of the Golden State Warriors, overseeing the organization’s financial planning and accounting. She is also responsible for the planning and leadership of the Warriors’ IT, facilities and business Jennifer Cabalquinto analytics departments. She has more than 20 years finance leadership experience in a variety of start-up, turnaround, stable and high growth business environments. A second new Board member is Amanuel Gobena, the director of operations for San Lorenzo Family Help Center – a Food Bank network agency member – where he has developed and managed successful business and operation strategies for the organization. • The Oakland East Bay Symphony has moved its offices to 1440 Broadway, suite 405. The office hours and phone number – (510) 444-0801 – remain the same. • Holy Names University (HNU) has announced the appointment of Karl Solibakke, PhD, as vice president for finance and administration. Prior to his appointment at HNU, Solibakke served for six years as the chief financial officer of the College of Arts and Sciences, the largest of 11 academic divisions at Syracuse University. At Syracuse, he developed strategies for enhancing revenues, facilities, capital upgrades, and curricular innovations. ■ Karl Solibakke


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> Grant

– continued from page 1

efforts to business, building deeper relationships with Chamber members currently invested in this work, and expanding local business and industry participation. It is proven that when students are presented with opportunities to experience real world work opportunities they are more engaged academically, graduate at a higher rate than their peers, and continue to be successful in college and career. As a community we also benefit by a stronger future workforce and stronger and more competitive businesses, resulting in a stronger community. Regardless of the size or type of business you operate, you can make a difference in a young person’s life. The Chamber’s HUB work will be focused on developing scalable opportunities for business engagement that work for business owners. Stay tuned – more information on its way!

partnership with the educational community to provide seamless support to Oakland’s students and our future workforce. Oakland is poised for great success and the Chamber continues to possess strong relationships with our policy makers to ensure business is represented in all areas of civic discourse. For information on each new member of the City Administration, please visit Welcome our new Board members – The Chamber thanks the outgoing members of our Board of Directors for their dedication and commitment to making our organization the strongest in the East Bay. The outgoing members are former Executive Committee member Ken White (Fidelity Roof Company) and former Chair of the Board Shannon Pedder (BRAND: creative). Please join me in welcoming the following incoming business leaders to our Chamber family:

City Hall update The summer months at City Hall have been significant with the passage of the city’s 2015/17 budget in June, the official arrival of Oakland’s new City Administrator Sabrina Landreth in July, followed by Assistant City Manager Christine Daniels in early August and the return of Stephanie Hom to Oakland as Deputy City Administrator. The Chamber Board had the opportunity recently to meet with Ms. Landreth and learn about her first year priorities for the city. I also had the opportunity recently to sit down with Sabrina to provide her an overview of the Chamber’s 2015/16 economic, policy and civic priorities including our significant

Jackie Lynn Ray Jackie Lynn Ray is the government and public affairs senior manager for Schnitzer Steel Industries. She joined Schnitzer in 2012 and currently oversees public policy, regulatory, and community relations for Schnitzer’s West Coast facilities, which include California, Washington, Oregon, Nevada, Alaska, Montana, and Hawaii. Prior to joining Schnitzer, Jackie served as government affairs manager and Jackie Lynn Ray

TextilePAC director at the National Council of Textile Organizations representing the U.S. textile industry in Washington, D.C. David Stein David Stein is a partner at Donahue Fitzgerald LLP. His practice emphasizes litigation in the areas of construction, real estate and general business disputes. Before joining Donahue Fitzgerald David Stein LLP, he was a founding partner of Stein, Rudser, Cohen & Magid LLP. David teaches a class in Construction Law at Diablo Valley College, and has been named a “Super Lawyer” by San Francisco magazine, an honor bestowed on just 5 percent of the lawyers practicing in Northern California. A lifelong Oakland resident, David is the president of Great Oakland (GO) Public Schools and serves on the Advisory Board for Friends of Oakland Parks & Recreation. Naveen Jain Naveen Jain has a dream – a quite ambitious dream, he admits – to rid the world of the AIDS virus once and for all. The founder of Sparkart in Oakland, an award-winning technology and Naveen Jain creative firm, Naveen is also the chief marketing officer and cofounder of Immunity Project, a bio-medical start-up dedicated to developing an HIV vaccine and distributing it worldwide at no cost. Naveen, who calls himself a problemsolver who was recently recognized as one of Business Insider’s top Indians in technology and was featured in Business Insider’s “The Silicon Valley 100,” was recently honored with the “Oakland Tech Award” presented by the Chamber at our Annual Meeting in June. ■

> Welcome new city administrator Welcome Sabrina Landreth back to Oakland! The former city manager of Emeryville has come back to Oakland as the new city administrator. Landreth Sabrina Landreth formerly served as deputy city administrator and budget director for Oakland, and spent time as an administrative services manager, legislative analyst to the City Council, and transition coordinator for Mayor Quan. During her tenure in Oakland, she helped lead the city to close over $175 million in budget deficits, led a massive overhaul of the budget and city organizational structure due to the dissolution of the Redevelopment Agency, institutionalized structured monitoring and forecasting of city finances and project delivery, and helped negotiate employee concessions and structural pension reform for all employee labor groups. Landreth recently spoke at a Chamber Board of Directors meeting. ■

AUGUST 2015 | 3

> Oakland welcomes SVS Group The SVS Group, which since 1996 has been placing skilled and semi-skilled employees in a variety of different companies throughout the Bay Area, has moved its offices from Emeryville to 2336 Harrison St. near downtown Oakland. The skill sets offered range from Light Manufacturing and Logistics to Finance, IT and Human Resources.

▲ At the recent SVS Group The move was celebrated with open house, co-owners a recent open house as well as a Eugene Lupario (holding ribbon cutting ceremony provided by the scissors, left) and Steve the Chamber of Commerce. Allen celebrate with a SVS Group has been able to work ribbon cutting ceremony. with some of the fastest growing Also pictured are SVS firms throughout Silicon Valley as Group staff members well as some of the oldest companies along with Mark Everton based in the Bay Area. It is this blend (far left), the Chamber’s of providing companies with top tier chairman of the Board. talent that has enabled SVS Group the ability to grow. Today, SVS Group has several offices in Northern California as well as in Phoenix, Dallas, Chicago, and Northern Florida. Additionally, there are plans to continue to increase the footprint of SVS Group in California. SVS Group’s mission is to assist every customer’s growth and

adaptation in an ever-changing marketplace. It provides innovative and personalized staffing solutions to its customers, ensuring that employees are efficient, knowledgeable, and skilled in particular fields. SVS Group maintains the principles of honesty, integrity, and respect to both clients and employees. “Being able to match client needs at a quick pace is critical to the success of our firm,” says Eugene Lupario, co-founder and president of SVS. “We are always exploring ways to increase efficiencies without ever losing the personal touch our clients and applicants have come to know and expect from us. Our ability to screen, test and place strong candidates with our clients will go a long way in enabling an upward trajectory for our firm.” The staffing industry continues to grow throughout the United States. With increased legislation regarding healthcare, FMLA (Family Medical Leave Act) and other reforms, staffing agencies have experienced double-digit growth in the past few years. “We expect incremental growth this year and into next, partly due to the issues surrounding healthcare reform,” says Amber Marks, SVS Group regional manager. “Many employers simply do not want the hassles associated with keeping up with these issues.” For more information on how SVS Group may be able to help you identify top talent, call (510) 923-9898. ■

> Summer suite special The Oakland A’s have developed a suite special for designated games this summer at Coliseum. Details of the package are:

• Up to 18 guests in an Eastside Suite • Includes a set food package (sliders, hot dogs, pasta salad, peanuts, popcorn, cookies, soda and water)

• Features five TVs and a private restroom • Three VIP parking passes • Discounted cost: only $990 – $55 per person (regularly up to $2,245)

• Available Games: 8/5, 8/6, 8/8 & 9/2 For more information, visit or call (510) 638-4900.

Need staffing help? For all your full service and summertime staffing needs, SVS Group has you covered. Call SVS Group today, then relax! (510) 923-9898

2336 Harrison Street • Oakland 94612


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> Chamber continues to be a leader in the convening of Public Policy, Economic Development programming Make plans to attend these four outstanding, provocative events presented by the Oakland Metropolitan Chamber of Commerce. To register, or for more information on any of the following, visit or contact Shaterica Sullivan at ssullivan@oakland or at (510) 874-4800, ext. 0.

> INSIDE OAKLAND – “THE STATE OF THE STATE” Friday, Sept 25 at a special time – 10 to 11:30 a.m., Chamber offices A panel discussion featuring:

• State Senator Loni Hancock A forceful advocate for open government, educational reform, environmental protection, economic development, and social justice. She was elected to the California State Senate in 2008.

> ECONOMIC DEVELOPMENT FORUM, “WHAT’S YOUR SOLAR STRATEGY?” Wednesday, Sept. 9, 3 to 4:30 p.m., Chamber offices Features a presentation by Dave Dunlap, Sungevity’s chief development officer, and Steve Birndorf, Sungevity’s director of commercial development. Learn how businesses save money and reduce uncertainty about future energy costs. • What types of businesses can benefit from solar power? • What’s changed in solar and why it’s time to take a second look. • The experiences of local businesses that went solar. ■


Loni Hancock

Rob Bonta

• Assemblymember Tony Thurmond Elected to represent California’s 15th Assembly District in November 2014. His focus is on the local and statewide economy, improving education from the ground up, and preventing crime. ■

Friday, Sept. 11, 8 to 10 a.m., Pandora Auditorium, 2100 Franklin St. featured speakers include Mayor Libby Schaaf, Christopher Thornberg of Beacon Economics, and Pandora CFO Mike Herring, as well as tech entrepreneurs discussing “Key Christopher Thornberg priorities for developing Oakland’s technology ecosystem,” hosted by Pandora (2100 Franklin St., 7th floor), with major sponsor Comcast and panel sponsor Donahue Fitzgerald LLP, Friday, Sept. 11 n

• Assemblymember Rob Bonta Elected to the California State Assembly’s 18th District in 2012, he has successfully passed legislation to keep neighborhoods safe, improve education, foster economic opportunity, and protect our social service safety net.

Tony Thurmond

> EAST BAY WOMEN IN BUSINESS LUNCHEON – MILLS COLLEGE PRESIDENT ALECIA DECOUDREAUX Friday, Oct. 2, 11:15 a.m. to 1:30 p.m., Waterfront Hotel in Jack London Square President DeCoudreaux will discuss “An Inspiring Leader’s Keys to Success.” ■ Alecia DeCoudreaux

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> Students from Japan engage

> Ogilvie explains his vision

in revitalization of West Oakland

for downtown Oakland

by Margot Lederer Prado and Jessie Stewart

by Alex Boyd

Throughout July, 100 students from the Tsunamiaffected region of Japan were in Oakland to participate in the UC Berkeley 2015 Tomodachi Softbank Youth Leadership Program’s “YPLAN” summer studio in community development and social action.

Y-PLAN (Youth-Plan, Learn, Act Now) is an educational strategy to engage students as current leaders in authentic city planning and policymaking. Students partnered with Margot Prado, senior economic development specialist with the city of Oakland, to study the revitalization opportunity on Mandela Parkway in West Oakland. Specifically, students focused on re-imagining the use of the Primary Steel Property at Grand and Mandela, currently on the market. Over the course of the three weeks, students worked with stakeholders from

the business and civic communities to ▲ A student from Shanghai presents an engage in the Y-PLAN methodology to action plan at the Y-PLAN generate youth-driven proposals to Global Action Exchange improve community health and equity at MetWest High School through the lens of the built in Oakland. environment. Students then transfer the Y-PLAN process to create youth-driven social action plans for their communities back home. Educational and city leaders from across the nation and globe, including more than 60 students from Beijing, Shanghai, Dallas, New York, Richmond, San Francisco, and Oakland convened in Oakland for the Y-PLAN Healthy Cities Conference. The two-day conference brought together cross-sector city and school leaders to discuss the strategy and infrastructure necessary to create healthy, vibrant, equitable cities and schools for all young people. On July 16, more than 150 student-scholars, teachers, and civic partners gathered at MetWest High School in Oakland to share information on a year of local action research and present innovative proposals to critical community development challenges. Key leaders presenting at the Met West summit included Joe Kahne, professor of education at Mills College; Richmond City Manager Bill Lindsay; West Contra Costa Unified School District Superintendent Bruce Harter; and Y-Plan ongoing partner Mark Shorett, regional planner, Association of Bay Area Governments. Some of the Y-Plan student projects presented included: • Digital Apps to create safer streets – New York City Vision Zero • Affordable housing connected to School + Community in Hunters View, San Francisco • Equitable and efficient transit for riders in Oakland • Youth-driven data for the Richmond Climate Action Plan • Creating a resilient, healthy Fruitvale community, Oakland • Equitable food access in Washington, D.C. Participants in the July 14th Y-Plan summit spent the afternoon completing a “mini” Y-PLAN commissioned by project “client” Daniel Hamilton, sustainability manager at the city of Oakland. Participants conducted community mapping and rapid action research to create proposals to improve the health and sustainability of Frank Ogawa Plaza. The Tomodachi Y-Plan summer students presented their proposals at UC Berkeley’s Wurster Hall at the end of their trip. ■ Margot Lederer Prado is a senior economic development specialist with the city of Oakland and Jessie Stewart is the Y-PLAN director for the UCB Center for Cities and Schools.


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Robert Ogilvie, the director of SPUR Oakland, was the featured speaker at a special joint meeting of the Chamber’s Economic Development and Public Policy committees. The July meeting brought a standing-roomonly crowd to the Chamber offices.

Ogilvie provided an update on SPUR’s “A Downtown for Everyone: A Vision for the Future of Downtown Oakland” policy report and announced that his organization has signed a lease for an office space in downtown Oakland and planned to move in October or November. During the presentation, Ogilvie emphasized how the next decade is a critical time to shape downtown Oakland. He described some of the historic context and trends that are taking place and highlighted downtown Oakland’s considerable array of current assets. For example, as the Bay Area’s transportation hub where many BART lines and freeways intersect, Oakland is one of the only places where growth is not significantly constrained by transportation choices. He also noted that downtowns typically function the best as job centers, and that areas near BART stations in downtown should be prioritized for commercial development, suggesting that Oakland should aim to add 50,000 new jobs and 25,000 new residents to the downtown area. The Chamber also strives to ensure job creation and Oakland’s sustainable economic development by partnering with business, the community, the city and other key economic and civic factors like SPUR to enhance and improve economic vitality in the city of Oakland and create and sustain a vibrant

▲ Robert Ogilvie and local and regional economy for SPUR Oakland will the area. move into new downFor example, the Chamber town Oakland offices recently released its District later this year. Indicators Report to provide granular glimpses into Oakland’s economic performance on a district-by-district basis, and helps stakeholders understand how various policy options would impact different parts of the city and plans to conduct an occupational demand analysis in the coming months. Additionally, in partnership with the Oakland Unified School District, the Peralta Community College District and a number of other regional school and community college districts, the Chamber was recently awarded a grant to drive the East Bay Linked Learning Hub of Excellence toward creating robust industry-education partnerships throughout our region. The Chamber is very appreciative that Mr. Ogilvie spent time to converse with our members on this important topic and we look forward to partnering with SPUR to help achieve sustainable and balanced growth in our city. ■ Alex Boyd is the Chamber’s director of economic development.



> Update on OUSD Pathway to Excellence by Superintendent of Schools Antwan Wilson


YEAR AGO I JOINED THE OAKLAND UNIFIED SCHOOL DISTRICT (OUSD) TO LEAD REFORM and change. In the first few months, we worked together to develop a plan to fulfill our vision that every student thrives, i.e. that they graduate ready for college, career, and community success. That plan, the Pathway to Excellence 2015-2020 Strategic Plan, was crafted with input from business and community, and adopted unanimously by our Board last November. It had three simple goals: 1. Effective talent programs: To become a great district, we need great people at every level. We must recruit, retain, and develop the best people to become the premier education employer in the Bay Area. 2. Accountable school district: We must be a professional managed and operated district that lifts up and supports our schools and community. We must run like the best-run businesses with a relentless focus on high quality customer service. 3. Quality community schools: The end goal of all of our work is quality schools for our children. This means Antwan Wilson a well-rounded education, full-service school, from early childhood education to linked learning pathways in our high schools that provide options for all of our children from our most needy to most talented and everyone in between. It is an ambitious though obtainable goal, and one we have a moral obligation to pursue. Oakland is a great community and deserves great quality schools. Each goal has specific, measureable, stretch metrics for us to hit by 2020. I encourage you all to read it at Our plan did not just sit on the shelf. We pulled together volunteers to staff strategic plan committees with specific charges to advance the work forward. We received nearly five applications for every spot available, and selected a talented cross-section of our community to join us in joint problem-solving. These folks met weekly for six months to do the work. The results of this included specific recommendations we are putting in place, including the following examples: • 2020 Community Schools Framework & Quality School Development Policy: Bold vision and strong accountability framework for quality school measures to drive continuous improvement. • Bond allocation criteria: Clear criteria around prioritizing bond funding to utilize our limited resources for optimal public good. • District-Charter Compact: Moving beyond the charter vs. district model to a “One District” pro-public school model that ensures an even playing field for all. • Diverse Talent Recruitment & Development Strategy: Strategies and practices to attract and retain a more diverse and talented workforce at every level. While this is groundwork we are laying toward our 2020 goals, we are also making huge progress along The end goal the way. The following are just a couple of our major successes this year: of all of our work • For the first time in decades, we reached good and fair agreements with most of our bargaining units, is quality schools which represent about 85 percent of our workforce. Not only will we get our teachers closer to the median for our children. teacher pay in the region (and they already have the best benefits), we lowered class sizes five years ahead of a state mandate, created an incentive / bonus structure for principals to serve the most challenging This means a schools and secured critical flexibility for school communities to have a role in hiring teachers and for well-rounded innovative programs to operate the way they need to succeed. education, full• Despite a rocky start – even more than I expected – our five Intensive Support Schools are advancing service school, toward bold transformation. Through deep community engagement, the families, students, and residents from early in these school communities joined us to rethink in a transformative way how they are going to achieve long-term, sustainable, and quality education. childhood • Early student performance indicators are positive. With increases in student reading progress, education to reductions in suspensions, and increases in English Language Learners transitioning to English proficiency. linked learning • Finally, we are on trajectory to complete all of our fiscal audits and be caught completely up. This pathways in our improved financial picture bodes well for us as we implement the Pathway to Excellence. There are so many more successes to share – from new curriculum, to implementing restorative high schools practices, and stronger partnerships with organizations like the Chamber of Commerce. Perhaps one of that provide the best indicators of success is that new funders are coming in to support this work. We are renewing and options for all deepening our relationships with Chamber leaders like Kaiser, and new funders like Intel are contributing to of our children specific technology diversity initiatives. We also were lucky enough to be part of the historically generous from our most $34 million recent contribution to equity work across Oakland. The bottom line is that we are making progress on our Pathway to Excellence. The Chamber has been needy to most part of this progress and will surely continue to be going forward, which our students and families deeply talented and appreciate. ■


Antwan Wilson is superintendent of the Oakland Unified School District.

everyone in between.

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> Golden State Warriors promoting peaceful leadership Special gratitude for promoting values to ensure healthier and productive conditions by Elñora Tena Webb, Ph.D.

There was something profound in the ’70’s statement frequently declared by the late Don Cornelius, “Love, peace and soul…” Isn’t this what we seek, really? We work, learn, play, observe…why? Practically, it is to secure resources and make connections essential to sustain our lives and that of our loved ones. Typically, we so engage to ensure that we are able to navigate the various social and economic paths to ensure some level of certainty, comfort, and stability.

Elñora Tena Webb

How about another aim – to experience love, peace and soul (happiness)…fusing work with passion that affirms our values. I believe the values displayed on and off the courts played a significant role in why so many of us were profoundly and positively affected by the genius displayed by our Oakland Warriors. Respectful engagement with the teams wearing different colored uniforms, accountability for one’s actions, appreciation for the diversity of the strengths and weaknesses of self and others, commitment to competence, collaboration and integrity to ensure sound teamwork, innovative engagement that fueled new standards of excellence, the result of effective collaboration between their athletes and their leaders, the coaching staff and executives. These were only a few of the values team members demonstrated in their well scripted display of athleticism and overall prowess. The Golden State Warriors, as a professional community, made the heavy liing they did seem almost effortless. Of course, the competitive engagement was tough and rough, yet arguably the most impressive work was demonstrated by the values that they displayed that quickly became the talk of the town. They embodied these shared values, a strategic winning vision, and the internal fortitude (resilience) even in the face of overwhelming challenges –perceptions and other extraordinary basketball players. Folks, this is the stuff from which greatness is born and thrives! In business – for profit and nonprofit – such behaviors illustrated by Stephen Curry, Andre Iguodala, Shaun Livingston, Klay Thompson, Harrison Barnes, Andrew Bogut, just to name a few, are essential (and central) to achieving and sustaining successes. Recall the 1,100,000 members of our great community present in and around Oakland for the celebratory activities honoring the Warriors? What a display of love, peace and soul! Arguably, the on and off the court behaviors of the Warriors’ team members, including the executives, transformed us in some fundamental way, and I hope we continue to leverage this momentum. Moreover, they allowed us to be illuminated as we are – a remarkably beautiful community with enormous assets, capable of producing value-added solutions throughout the city of Oakland and the greater East Bay. At Laney College, we value the transformative leadership of the Warriors and so many other organizations that affirm the values of Accountability, Appreciation, Collaboration, Competence, Diversity, Innovation, Integrity, and Respect. We demystify the reasons why we continuously enhance our effectiveness by embracing these values and daily renewing our commitment to integrity and progress. We emphasize doing our best in teaching and learning, student achievement, administrative practices and delivery of essential support services. We work with the knowledge that continuous improvements and achievements are possible due to those – our shared – values. Ours is a strategic vision of influencing the world via responsible leadership and the mission to ensure access to quality transfer and career-technical education and foundation skills in response to the cultural, economic, social, and workforce needs of the greater Bay Area while also increasing community partnerships and global awareness. Our bottom line, excellence, student success and community benefits that support flourishing businesses, new innovative industries, and community centers of hope – all ensuring that each of our neighborhoods and family units are safe and loving spaces for all. Thank you – CEOs, elected officials, business and community leaders, foundation boards, fellow educators, faith-based leaders, and many others for forging such a vision through your thoughts, daily practices, operational structures and institutional policies. We value being in partnership with you. We are especially appreciative of our youth, young adults and elders for optimistically forging ahead to deliver on the promise that hard work, strategically directed, combined with happiness and passion instill, an ever increasing level of hope and capacity for progress. The result…a healthier and more productive community. ■ Elñora Tena Webb, Ph.D., is the president of Laney College.

AUGUST 2015 | 9



> At Chabot Space & Science Center, Rachel celebrates 100 years Each year, Chabot Space & Science Center honors Champions of Science – individuals, businesses and organizations that play key roles in helping Chabot realize its mission to inspire and educate about our Planet Earth and the Universe. This year’s Champions will be honored at the Starlight Gala, “A Startling Evening of Mad Science,” which takes place Saturday, Sept. 26 at its spectacular location between the Redwoods Regional and Joaquin Miller parks in the Oakland hills. • Individual Champion of Science: Dan Miller • Educator Champion of Science: Gerald McKeegan • Corporate Champion of Science: Morgan Stanley • Foundation Champion of Science: East Bay Community Foundation The honored guest at Chabot Space & Science Center’s annual 2015 Starlight Gala is “Rachel,” Chabot’s 20-inch refractor telescope, which celebrates her centennial this year. Rachel was acquired in 1915 for the total price of $19,100 (including shipping). The telescope was installed at the 2nd Chabot Observatory on Mountain Boulevard in Oakland in December. Prior to being installed at the observatory site, the tube and mounting assemblies were on exhibit at the 1915 Panama Pacific Exposition in San Francisco. The construction of the telescope is the result of the work of two companies. They were John Brashear of Pittsburg, Pennsylvania, who produced the lens, and Warner & Swasey of Cleveland, Ohio,

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who produced the tube assembly, mounting, and pier. With a 20-inch aperture, Rachel ranks as one of the largest refracting telescopes in North America and is tied for third largest refractor in the Western U.S. with the Chamberlain Observatory’s 20-inch refractor. The two larger refractors are Lick Observatory’s 36-inch on Mt. Hamilton and Lowell Observatory’s 24-inch in Flagstaff, Arizona. The main tube on Rachel is about 30 feet long (including the hood). The main telescope assembly weighs about 4,000 pounds, but is so perfectly balanced that it can be moved with a finger. Rachel represents the state-of-the-art for large refracting telescopes in the early 20th century. In June 1999, Rachel was removed from the site where she had served the public for 75 years. Extensive dismantling, cleaning, and refurbishment were performed. Early in 2000, Rachel was installed in her new dome at the new Chabot Space & Science Center. Stephen Hawking, theoretical physicist, cosmologist and author, once stated, “Remember, to look up at the stars and down at your feet … be curious.” The Champions of Science and honored guest, Rachel, remind us that Chabot Space & Science seeks to engage hearts and minds in the wonder of science and encourage the joy of discovery, no matter what your age. ■



> Students, businesses, thrive with Linked Learning Through the Linked Learning collaboration going on between the Oakland Unified School District (OUSD) and local businesses – in which the Chamber of Commerce has played a significant part – high school student interns in OUSD college and career pathways programs contribute a combined 27,500 hours to over 61 local Oakland companies every July. This is one of the many benefits of Linked Learning – where students get real life work experience that relates to what they’re studying in the classroom, a proven way to keep kids in school and inspire higher achievement and graduation levels, while also teaching basic professional skills. Student interns prepare for their summer internship experience in Oakland companies for two years by participating in lessons and work-based learning opportunities through Oakland’s Exploring College and Career Options (ECCO) program. Fremont High School Media Academy teacher Jasmine Miranda reports that, “ECCO is hitting the mark. Hosts are so thrilled that ECCO students come with training, support, case management, and a year’s worth of internship prep curriculum under their belt.” The goals of the summer internship program are to promote students’ interest in post-secondary education

> Company hosts report that ECCO interns bring an impressive array of technology skills to their work, ranging from Microsoft Office applications, Instagram, Twitter, Facebook, web page development and maintenance, data entry and analysis. Ayo Akatugba, a teacher from the Green Energy Academy says, “Partners are so excited. They really cannot believe that students can complete the high level skills that they do at work sites. This program really works. Students are deepening learning, and partners are excited to be at work because of the students.”

and to develop the skills that are required to be successful in the 21st century workplace. An internship that provides a rich learning environment sends an important message to students: learning and earning are intrinsically related. Student interns work full-time or part-time in the workplace on their project and receive an educational stipend and school credit. They are supervised during the summer by OUSD teachers who act as a liaison to the work site supervisors. Host companies are asked to identify a project to which students can contribute over a five-week period. Some of the projects student interns have participated in include: managing a database to assist with a community relations campaign, creating brochures explaining services and training, advertising and marketing a fundraising event, updating social media and online presence for your company, researching real estate values for an upcoming bond measure, data entry and analysis. Company hosts report that ECCO interns bring an impressive array of technology skills to their work, ranging from Microsoft Office applications, Instagram, Twitter, Facebook, web page development and maintenance, data entry and analysis. Ayo Akatugba, a teacher from the Green Energy Academy says, “Partners are so excited. They really cannot believe that students can complete the high level skills that they do at work sites. This program really works. Students are deepening learning, and partners are excited to be at work because of the students.” ■

AUGUST 2015 | 11



> Hands-on workshop a success for prospective podiatric medical students by Justin Berton

On the third day of a hands-on workshop for students considering applying to Samuel Merritt University’s (SMU’s) California School of Podiatric

“I’m taking this home and putting it on the mantle,” joked Skeel, a recent graduate from the University of California at San Diego. “And then I’m going to apply to come here in the fall.” Skeel was one of about 20

Medicine (CSPM), Lily

prospective students who

Skeel held up a plaster

visited SMU’s Oakland campus

impression of her own foot.

from July 15-17 for the seventh Podiatry 3-D Workshop, which gives future applicants an interactive glimpse of life as a CSPM student. Participants for the free event came from as far east as Maryland and as far west as Hawaii. The group conducted faux ankle surgeries in the Health Science Simulation Center (HSSC), ran through motion experiments at the Motion Analysis Research Center (MARC), and practiced their clinical skills in suturing and casting. “We want them to get a strong sense of what it’s like to attend our university day in and day out,” said Andre Singleton, SMU’s associate director of Enrollment and Student Services. “We want them to ask questions, engage with current students and faculty, and feel like they’re part of the SMU family before they apply.” For future applicant Sibin Mathews, SMU distinguished itself from other podiatric schools he’s visited for allowing the visitors to jump into the clinical skills. “The hands-on interaction is what sets SMU apart,” Mathews said aer he made a plaster cast on fellow participants – a skill honed by every podiatry student. “Before – continued on page 13

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> Workshop


> Opportunity for all Oakland children

by Jonathan Klein

– continued from page 12

I came here, I thought I wanted to apply here along with other schools. Now, this is my number one choice. I’m hoping to get in here first.” James Lee, a third year podiatry student who answered questions for the prospective students, said the early clinical exposure offered at CSPM is always a strong draw for applicants. Lee said most podiatry schools wait until the third year to place students in clinics, but CSPM is known for sending second-year students into Highland Hospital, Laguna Honda, and San Francisco General. “It’s the clinics where the learning really starts to take place,” Lee told the prospective students. “Once you start interacting with real patients

with real problems, you start finding real solutions.” Skeel said she’d enjoy her plaster foot souvenir, but was eager to apply to SMU in the fall. “It already feels like family,” she

Last July, we welcomed Superintendent Antwan Wilson, who hit the ground running and worked with school board members to refresh Oakland Unified School District’s strategic plan. The result is a blueprint that seeks “to transform a public education system that reinforces race and class-based fault lines into one that breaks down barriers to achievement and prepares every student for college, career, and community.” It is an ambitious and necessary charge if we want to ensure equality of opportunity throughout our schools and secure the health of our city, both socially and economically. As Robert Putnam said: “Americans concerned about the opportunity gap must not make the all too common mistake of blaming schools for the problem. Instead, we should work with schools to narrow the gap. School is, aer all, where the kids are.” In June, OUSD and the Oakland Education Association (OEA) reached their first multi-year contract in almost nine years. The three-year deal provides teachers with their most significant raise in more than a decade. That compensation increase is essential to the success of the district – helping OUSD attract and retain talent, develop leadership, and maintain relationships that teachers build among students and families. The school year was also not without controversy and strong debate. Teacher contract negotiations were tense at times with teachers at some schools Jonathan Klein electing to “work to rule” to mobilize support around the OUSD-OEA negotiations. And OUSD’s Call for Quality Schools and Intensive School Support initiatives to transform some of our lowest-performing schools were met by some with enthusiasm, but many in our community had significant concerns about lack of clarity, rushed timelines, and insufficient resources to support the process. While we hear strong alignment about the direction and need to transform our schools, parents and educators across the city are asking that OUSD leaders provide greater clarity on process and decision-making roles in shaping the future of our schools. A wise colleague recently offered the notion that people are more likely to hear when they feel like they’ve been heard. We have to sharpen our focus on equity and ensure our youth of color are supported to develop their skills and lead in our city. The need for quality schools for all families is all the more urgent as Oakland gentrifies at a rapid rate. To be successful, our efforts require significant parent, educator, and community engagement. Our city’s public schools need community partners that communicate about strategic goals, build political will to implement significant change, and hold the district accountable to its strategy and to investing in parent and community partnership. Last November, Oakland voters passed Measure N to invest $120 million to transform our district-run and charter high schools to better prepare students for college and career in this new century. OUSD’s college and career prep “Linked Learning” pathways have a graduation rate of 84 percent, a significant boost over the overall average at around 65 percent. Measure N gives our students another reason to engage and connect with school. However, for Measure N to succeed, our schools need the business community’s continued engagement and commitment. OUSD and school leaders are actively seeking partnerships with local businesses for work-based learning and internships both during the school year and for next summer. These and other initiatives make this a tremendous moment of opportunity for our children and public schools. We have a window to do this work with a mayor, city council, superintendent, school board, and community aligned for the first time in years. It can be done. But it will take us working together. ■

Before we ramp up the new school year, I wanted to acknowledge what a pivotal year our city’s schools just completed.

Jonathan Klein is the chief executive officer of the educational nonprofit GO Public Schools. Visit our website at to read the full blog on Key Moments from the 2014-2015 School Year.

said. “What I noticed most was how well students and faculty got along. That was important for me to see – they treated each other with respect, like good friends.. ■ Justin Berton is the associate director of media relations at Samuel Merritt University in Oakland.

AUGUST 2015 | 13



> EBCF partners to invest in education by James Head The East Bay Community Foundation (EBCF) organizes business and community support for education in multiple ways, and has had particular success in Oakland. EBCF has been a major catalyst and facilitator of community support for Oakland schools for more than 15 years, including channeling more than $40 million to the Oakland Unified School District (OUSD) during the decade of the 2000s as part of the District’s “Expect Success” initiative. We then helped raise and disburse more than $6 million from 2010-12 for James Head OUSD’s ground-breaking Strategic Plan, “Community Schools, Thriving Students.” In particular, EBCF played a pivotal role in finding and encouraging 18 donors to contribute more than $2.6 million to the launch of OUSD’s nationally recognized African-American Male Achievement program, which is improving outcomes for African-American boys. In 2012 EBCF commissioned a study that showed how a communitybased education fund could be structured successfully to raise and manage private donations. In 2013, OUSD designated the Oakland Public Education Fund (the “Ed Fund”) as its fundraising partner. EBCF has helped the Ed Fund build its skills, and we continue to convene more than 25 foundations and donors quarterly to stay engaged with OUSD’s priorities and progress. The Ed Fund is now Superintendent Antwan Wilson’s chief partner for raising private funds to expand OUSD’s ability to innovate and to serve Oakland’s students. he East Bay EBCF’s support for education Community in Oakland and beyond comes both from our own endowed Foundation (EBCF) resources as well as from funds is one of the largest established at EBCF by our corporate and community sources of philanpartners. With our endowed thropic support in funds, we concentrate on nonprofit programs that help Alameda and Contra young children arrive at school Costa counties. During ready to learn and to read fiscal years 2012-14, proficiently by third grade, a critical predictor of future EBCF and its donors success. Our grants support made grants totaling programs that teach positive parenting skills, help strengthen $97.2 million in the pre-school programs, and support East Bay. More than struggling young readers to catch up to their peers. 500 generous donors We also advocate for public have helped us build policies and resources to improve early childhood education our charitable assets programs overall. to more than $400 Our work with corporate partners and other donors to million to invest support Oakland schools takes wisely in high-priority many forms: • The Clorox Company community needs – Foundation has relied on EBCF both in the East Bay since 2002 to help them carry out their community focus on youth. and beyond. ■ EBCF evaluates all proposals that come to The Clorox Company Foundation and makes recommendations for funding to its governing board. (See a further description of their recent work in Oakland elsewhere in this issue of OBR.) • Kaiser Permanente has partnered with EBCF for more than ten years to manage a wide variety of community grants. In addition to funding pioneering work in health care both nationally and in California, Kaiser works with EBCF to support innovation and community services in Oakland schools. In 2013 Kaiser and EBCF renewed this commitment to Oakland schools by making a $10 million three-year grant that helps improve student health, expand the African-American Male Achievement program, and advance OUSD’s community-driven strategic plan. • In partnership with the Rogers Family Foundation, EBCF has facilitated the growth and development of the Oakland Literacy


14 OBR Oakland Business Review |

Coalition, raising more than $600,000 for ▲ The nonprofit Super early-childhood reading support. Out of Stars Literacy sends staff into Oakland schools to this Coalition grew a city-wide campaign work with young readers. called Oakland Reads 2020 with the ambitious goal of doubling by 2020 the percentage of Oakland third-graders who are proficient readers. EBCF is proud to be a funder and partner in Oakland Reads 2020, and we invite you to join other businesses and community leaders in supporting this work ( As Oakland Chamber members, we look forward to collaborating with the Chamber and other members to expand our investments in Oakland’s educational success. For further information about EBCF’s services for businesses to strengthen community involvement, contact Ken Harootunian at ■

James Head is the president and chief executive officer of the East Bay Community Foundation.

> Help celebrate OUSD graduates The Marcus Foster Education Fund will celebrate the 2015 Oakland Unified School District graduates and scholarship recipients at “All Aboard Oakland – Laying the Tracks to College,” a breakfast from 8:30 to 10 a.m. on Wednesday, Aug. 12 at the Laney College Student Center, 900 Fallon St. The breakfast is an effort to help connect students with leaders in the business community who are invested in their success. Following the breakfast, students will participate in informational workshops designed to help them navigate college life. Some of the workshop topics include financial literacy, counseling, mental/physical health, and hidden curriculum. The primary focus of the Marcus Foster Education Fund is to achieve educational equity as well as financial support for OUSD students on their paths to post-secondary education. Its mission is to develop relationships and mobilize resources to create opportunities for all children in the Oakland public schools to achieve excellence. The organization was founded by, and later renamed aer, the late Oakland superintendent Dr. Marcus Foster, and continues to pursue his vision that urban education can be transformed with active community participation. The Marcus Foster Education Fund is celebrating its 40th year serving students, teachers, and parents in the Oakland Unified School District. For more information on the breakfast, visit ■



> Clorox volunteers team up

tremendous value in the JA program. “I continue to be a huge supporter of Junior Achievement,” he says. “It is the pre-eminent organization for delivering fiscal literacy and job readiness training to kids, and I see the need for these capabilities becoming more important as the economic landscape becomes ever more competitive and

with Junior Achievement at Lincoln Elementary School by Jillian Greenacre Year after year, volunteers from The Clorox Company team up with the Junior Achievement organization to inspire student success at Lincoln Elementary School in downtown Oakland. For those unfamiliar with Junior Achievement (JA), it is an organization dedicated to teaching kids from kindergarten through 12th grade about workforce readiness and financial literacy. Over 4.5 million students participated in JA programs in the U.S. during the 2013-2014 school year. Every January, 40-50 Clorox employees are recruited to teach five lessons each at Lincoln Elementary School. Each volunteer (or each pair of volunteers, if they prefer to teach with a partner) is assigned to one classroom and provided with engaging JA teaching materials for the five 30-45 minute hands-on learning sessions. While the volunteers must complete all the lessons by the end of the school year, the schedule is flexible. Volunteers coordinate directly with the teachers to fit their needs. The Clorox Company supports employee participation in the JA childhood education program, which allows employees to volunteer during business hours with manager approval. In addition, Lincoln Elementary is only a five-minute walk from the company’s Oakland headquarters, so it’s very convenient. The JA curriculum covers important economic lessons. Kindergarteners are taught how an individual can earn and save money. Second graders are taught how individuals can benefit from and contribute to a community’s success, and they are introduced to the concept of how taxes work. By the 5th grade, children are taught which skills are high in demand in the current market and how globalization can affect the careers they might pursue. At every grade level, students are introduced to diverse jobs to help them have a more informed answer to the question they are inevitably asked: “What do you want to be when you grow up?” The collaboration with Junior Achievement shows that companies and schools can be great community partners to help children reach their full potential. Suzanna Mori, a combined 2nd/3rd grade teacher at Lincoln, says “My students are immensely excited to work with our Clorox partners. Each year they look forward to them coming to the classroom.” Chip Conradi, treasurer and vice president of Tax for Clorox, sees

complex. I stick with JA because it works!” While there is always room for new JA volunteers, most keep coming back for more. Alok Goel, a long-time JA volunteer and attorney for Clorox, says “I have gained so much from being a volunteer in Junior Achievement; I highly encourage others to participate.” ■

Jillian Greenacre is a legal assistant at The Clorox Company.

> Fred Finch Youth Center – Nearly 125 years of caring by Tara DeRosa In 1891, when Fred Finch Youth Center first opened its doors to those children with nowhere else to turn, the world was a vastly different place. Shoes cost a dollar, the automobile was still a novelty, and the moon landing, smartphones, and the internet revolution were the stuff of science fiction. When Duncan and Eunice Finch welcomed the first group of vulnerable children onto the seven-acre Oakland Hills campus, they were determined that no one – regardless of their background, financial status, or personal challenges – be neglected or forgotten. This determination lives on in the programs offered today at the Fred Finch Youth Center. The newest program to embody the legacy of agency founders is The Rising Harte Wellness Center (RHWC), which opened in October 2014. A collaboration between Fred Finch Youth Center, Alameda County Social Services Agency, Alameda County Health Care Services AdministrationCenter for Healthy Schools and Communities, Alameda County Behavioral Health Services, Oakland Unified School District, and Native American Health Center, Inc., Rising Harte is a school-linked health clinic that provides much needed medical and dental care, behavioral health services, and health education to neighboring Bret Harte Middle School students and their families.

▲ A Rising Harte patient Also benefitting from the clinic’s services prepares for a dental are transition age youth (ages 16-26) from cleaning. across Alameda County, with a special emphasis on those transitioning out of the foster care system. RHWC contains two medical exam rooms, one dental operatory, two counseling rooms, one nursing work station, one medical lab, and one group health education room. Youth visiting the clinic receive preventative services, primary medical and dental treatment, and screenings. Co-located at RHWC, the Center for Early Intervention on Deafness (CEID) operates a satellite audiology clinic that provides hearing health care services for both children and adults in Alameda County. While much is going on inside the clinic walls, a key service component, health education, is provided outside of RHWC, at neighboring Brett Harte Middle School. In addition to providing much needed, youth-centered information and a forum to ask questions students may otherwise find embarrassing, on-site health education helps encourage youth to visit the clinic if they have a problem, or simply need advice. Rising Harte is just one of the programs that will be supported by Fred Finch’s Oct. 12, 2015 Champions for Youth Golf Tournament. Leading Bay – continued on page 18

AUGUST 2015 | 15


> Partnering with businesses to make impact for kids by Brian Stanley As Oakland's education fund, we consider it our responsibility to help all of our students learn, grow, and thrive. This citywide vision is at the heart of our work, and we are excited to share that our impact is growing, thanks in large part to partnerships of all kinds: Long-term, District-wide partnerships We are humbled to be part of the Oakland Unified School District’s multiyear partnership with Intel, announced in May, which aims to bring technology career pathways to Oakland’s high schools. We were also proud to partner with the San Francisco Foundation on its recent historic $34 million investment in Oakland, $6 million of which is devoted to creating a range of pathways of opportunity that support the District's “Pathway to Excellence” Strategic Plan. The initiative is funded by an anonymous donor of the San Francisco Foundation. As Superintendent Antwan Wilson said about the portion of this grant going to OUSD, “The gift epitomizes the kind of civic commitment and local partnerships needed to build a school district that cares for the whole child and prepares every student for college, career, and community success.” Connecting kids with resources they need – right now Last year, our Back to School Backpack Drive brought backpacks to 35 schools across Oakland. This year, thanks to our partners at Family Giving Tree, we’ve more than doubled that number, with 75 schools set to receive packs filled with supplies – 4,200 backpacks in all! Our 3rd Annual Back to School Supply Drive is also underway. In previous years, we have partnered with Clorox, Associated Coffee, the Rotary Club of Oakland, and others to connect teachers and students with the supplies they need to hit the ground running in the new school year. This year we’ve struck up partnerships with even more local businesses, including Oaklandish. If your business is interested in getting behind this year’s Drive, please email Bringing the public into our public schools In October, we are hosting the District's first Latino Literature Read-In, where we expect 200 volunteers reading aloud to kids in 65 schools. This

Education comes on the heels of our successful First Annual African-American Literature Read-In last February. If you’d like to get involved with our Read-In this October, we are still looking for a Presenting Sponsor. Email rebecca@oaklandedfund .org to discuss the opportunity. In May, we partnered with OUSD and several businesses (Farmers Insurance – Ruth Stroup Agency, Oaklandish, Hog’s Apothecary, the Golden State Warriors, and more) to host the Second Annual Thank an Oakland Teacher Month, when we engaged individuals and organizations across Oakland in saying “thank you” to the heroes who teach our students. The month culminated with 350 teachers from 80 different schools attending our Teacher Appreciation Party at the Oakland Museum of California. Be part of Nov. 13 Gala Luncheon All of this momentum is building toward our 2015 Gala Luncheon at the Claremont Hotel on Nov. 13. The first of its kind supporting Oakland public schools and co-hosted with Oakland Mayor Libby Schaaf and Superintendent Wilson, the Gala will feature a Mayor’s Reception, lunch, and opportunities to network with other city and community leaders. We hope you will join us in coming together for our students! Some sponsorship spots are still available, so please email to reserve your table and learn more. You can also visit for more information. ■

Brian Stanley is the executive director of the Oakland Public Education Fund.

> Three money ‘musts’ for families sending a child to college this fall by Adnan Siddiqui For the past 17 or 18 years, your summers have probably been full of things like family vacations, swimming at the local pool, cookouts with family and friends and maybe road trips. But if you have a college-bound high school graduate in your household, this summer may feel different. You’re probably getting ready to send your child off to college and are thinking about everything he or she will need – computers, bedding, school supplies, and the list goes on. While it’s important to make sure your child has Adnan Siddiqui many of the creature comforts of home, it is also vital to help your student start his or her adult life on firm financial footing with tools and good personal finance habits that will serve them well throughout their lives. As a parent and someone who has worked in the banking industry for many years, I offer three steps that can help your family get ready for college: 1. Paying for college: There are many options for paying for college, including tuition payment plans, scholarships, grants, and federal and private student loans. Before you apply for a student loan, you should consider other financial means you plan on using to cover costs. It’s important to understand the features of student loans and consider a loan option that best fits your child’s personal and academic needs. Wells Fargo’s new “Get College Ready” interactive website ( can help you learn about options. Anytime you consider taking out a loan, have a plan for how you’ll pay it off. 2. Managing money: For many young adults, going away to college is the first time they will manage a budget or use other financial products such as checking and saving accounts, debit cards, credit cards or insurance. Families can help their students make sure they have the right accounts and services as well as an understanding for how to manage them responsibly. For example, with Wells Fargo’s “My Money Map,” consumers of all ages can easily track spending, set budgeting goals and monitor savings. 3. Building Credit: Helping students understand the responsible use of credit and how it works can set them for more financial freedom and choices down the road. Wells Fargo’s “The Path to Good Credit” can help students understand credit basics and how, with smart planning, they can get on the right path for financial success. By taking the time to build a thoughtful financial plan, you’ll be able to spend more time with your family and truly make this summer season the most memorable summer of them all. ■

Adnan Siddiqui is a district manager at Wells Fargo.

16 OBR Oakland Business Review |

photo by Hasain Rasheed Photography



> Just ask! Questions to guide an independent school search by Katrina Hale Lappin

Education • What is the homework philosophy and how much, if any, should you expect? • Where do graduates matriculate? What high school/college counseling is offered? As a parent or guardian and a consumer of independent schools, it is essential that you know, trust, and value the program in which you enroll your child. Questions before enrollment will help your family become part of a thriving school community that is just right for you. ■ Katrina Hale Lappin is the director of admissions and financial aid at Redwood Day School, an independent K-8 school in Oakland.

> Oakland Zoo teams up with PG&E For families embarking on a school search, the fall season can be both exciting and daunting. The most important part of this process is, of course, finding the right community for your family – a place where you can imagine your child growing, stretching, and succeeding.

Part of finding this “fit” requires that you trust your intuition when you walk into a school and observe the community and classrooms in action. The most basic question is this – does this school inspire you? As you discover schools that strike a chord with your family, you will find yourself sorting through websites, brochures, and books. It’s easy to hit information overload! Despite the desire on the part of admissions offices to produce materials that really shows value and unique programs, all the materials can soon start to run together. Because of this, we encourage you to talk to us and ask lots of questions. Hopefully the following questions will help you formulate your own list: • Does the school’s mission statement ring true to your family’s values? Do the words of the mission seem to drive the curriculum, teachers, administrators, and children? • How big is the campus and what is the enrollment? • What is the class size? • How diverse is the school? What does the school mean by diversity and how does it support a diverse community? • Is the school accredited? • How are faculty and staff supported in professional development? • Are standardized tests administered? • What sports programs are offered? • What specialist classes are offered? How are they connected to the core curriculum? • How does the school respond to, and work with families on issues of discipline, bullying, and social development? • How are health and safety issues taught? • How do parents, teachers, and students communicate? • How are parents/guardians involved? • What is the school’s financial aid program? • How much is tuition? What is the typical annual increase? • What fundraising takes place during the year? How will these funds impact your child’s educational experience?

The Oakland Zoo has teamed up with Pacific Gas and Electric Company (PG&E) and local youth organizations for year four of the PG&E Youth Employment Training Internship Program. The goal of the internship program is to create jobs and develop informed citizens who are capable of understanding complex issues and making educated decisions about the future of our environment. The zoo’s Youth Internship and Employment Training Project will train, engage, and motivate underserved teens and young adults in Alameda County to develop an awareness of the jobs available to students with a background in science, cultivate an interest and sustain a working knowledge of these careers, and ultimately prepare students for careers in science and its related fields. There are ten interns participating in 2015, and they are split into three categories: Health and Science (Animal Care, Conservation and Research and Veterinary departments), Land Management (Grounds and Horticulture departments), and ▲ Oakland Zoo intern Jade Finch. Business (Administration, Human Resources, Accounting, and Marketing departments). Young people were referred to this internship program by several local youth employment organizations. East Bay nonprofits, Marriott Foundation’s Bridges from School to Work program and Youth Uprising (YU) are two of Oakland Zoo’s community partners that helped find interns for this program. “Oakland Zoo representatives have committed themselves to working directly with Bridges counselors to create interview opportunities for young adults who are ready to work,” said Andrew Selby, employer representative II, Marriott Foundation, Bridges from School to Work. “In the last several years, over 30 Bridges participants have been hired at the zoo, giving them invaluable experience and skills to help prepare them for future success. Through this partnership, the Oakland Zoo continuously demonstrates their commitment not only to youth, but the entire Oakland community.” Daily intern activities include animal diet preparation, habitat maintenance, guest interaction, learning about animal behaviors and conservation, customer service, office administration, garden and grounds maintenance, and landscape design. The interns must work 24 hours per week and participate in reflection sessions, where they discuss their on-thejob experiences with each other. The program aims to help students receive invaluable work readiness skills focusing on communication techniques, time management, accountability, teamwork, and understanding the importance of workplace protocols. Upon completion of the program, interns entering into college are provided $500 scholarships to cover eligible college-level education expenses. PG&E has provided the funding for this program since its inception, supporting it as part of its commitment to providing jobs for underserved youth throughout its 70,000-square-mile service area. “PG&E’s collaboration with the Oakland Zoo these past many years has been a true partnership which has helped dozens of Oakland youth gain unique experiences in the many facets of career experiences the zoo offers,” noted Travis Kiyota, PG&E vice president of Corporate Affairs. “PG&E’s strong involvement in the Oakland and East Bay community has centered around assuring our customers are safe, have economic development opportunities, and provide a workforce and educational pathway for our young people to success,” Kiyota added. Thanks to PG&E’s support and inspired investment along with commitment from community youth programs, the Oakland Zoo’s PG&E Youth Employment and Training program has proven to be a great success and will continue to grow and expand for years to come. ■

photo by Heather Baker

for Summer Internship Program

AUGUST 2015 | 17


> Mayor Schaaf: Dreaming big


> Transforming lives

to ensure Oakland’s future

at Bishop O’Dowd


Have you ever wondered how a business sponsorship of a financial aid fundraising event makes a difference? O’Dowd student Francesca Kelly, Class of 2016, is ready to tell you. Francesca had just completed third grade when her father, Stephen Kelly, Class of 1977, passed away suddenly. Her mom, Yvette (Cookie), had no idea how she would be able to continue to support her family and keep Francesca in Catholic school with only one income. “When it came time for me to register for high school, my dream was to go to O’Dowd,” Francesca said, and follow in the footsteps of her dad, aunt, uncle, brother and cousins. Thanks to the “Transforming Lives” financial aid program, Francesca was able to fulfill her dream. “It is your kindness, philanthropy and generosity that made my dream and those of hundreds of students here at O’Dowd possible, and for that I thank you,” she said. Francesca was one of several speakers who shared their moving stories at last year’s O’Dowd’s inaugural Transforming Lives Dinner, attended by 220 members of the East Bay community, which raised more than $200,000 for O’Dowd’s financial aid program. Former parents Don and Ellie Knauss were lead donors, offering a challenge match of $25,000. This year, O’Dowd is providing more than $2.5 million in financial aid to more than 350 students who would not be attending school without assistance. But that amount doesn’t begin to address the growing need for support. M. Shawn Cunningham II, Class of 2016, still remembers the thrill of receiving his acceptance letter to O’Dowd, along with a financial aid offer that eased the tuition burden for his single mom. “Looking back, that letter was critical to who I am becoming. I want to thank each of you for playing such a major role in allowing me to achieve my goals and take advantage of the great opportunities that O’Dowd has to offer,” he said. Alumni who benefitted from financial aid say their O’Dowd

here is no shortage of clichés about the transformative power of education and to see Oakland Mayor Libby Schaaf in action, you might think she believes every one of them. “If I had a magic wand and could make one wish for Oakland,” said Mayor Schaaf, “it would be for every child to graduate high school with the expectations, resources and skills to complete college and be successful in the career of their choice.” Schaaf believes achieving this goal would address the root causes behind Oakland’s most pressing challenges, from improving public safety to creating equitable jobs and housing. Since taking office in January, she has put her energy into making this dream a reality with a number of key initiatives intended to serve Oakland’s young people from “cradle-to-career.” Schaaf has also committed to bringing what she calls, “tech-quity” to Oakland by making sure that students have the technological skills to succeed in the 21st century economy and by fostering a local tech business ecosystem that will help lift up and not push out existing Oakland residents. Partnerships with groups like OTXWest ( are making it possible to achieve this goal. In addition, Schaaf has re-launched the Mayor’s Summer Jobs Program as the Classrooms2Careers Initiative with a focus on helping students link their

classroom learning with on-the-job experi▲ East Bay College Fund ence and mentoring. Over 1,800 Oakland Awards Celebration - 141 new scholarships. Pashael youth have participated this summer with Dorsey (seated right) inplans to expand to a year-round program terned in Mayor Schaaf’s in January 2016. The effort supports OUSD Office this summer. (Doug Superintendent Antwan Wilson’s expansion Duran/Bay Area News of Linked Learning, which the Oakland Group) Metropolitan Chamber of Commerce has also championed. Wilson and Schaaf are partnering closely to ensure that every child in Oakland receives an excellent education. David Silver, Schaaf’s director of education, is leading the charge in bringing other partners to the table to support this work. One of those strategic partners is the East Bay College Fund (EACF) because of their proven success in ensuring that students from diverse backgrounds graduate from college. East Bay College Fund: Opportunity changes everything In May, Schaaf joined the East Bay College Fund’s 13th annual awards ceremony to address the organization’s largest celebration ever. A crowd of over 1,000 cheered EBCF’s newest college-bound youth. EBCF awarded over $1.2 million to 141 students. In Oakland, the East Bay College Fund gives scholarships, provides college access counseling, and matches students in two- and four-year college programs with mentoring all the way through college. EBCF’s hands-on approach, including peer counseling and intensive skillsbuilding, results in 80 percent success in college graduation – four times the rate of the national average for similar students. A prioritized goal for EBCF is to make stronger links between college success, jobs and careers in Oakland, which aligns closely with Schaaf’s education agenda. EBCF is working with business and city leaders, OUSD Linked Learning Academies and Community College Pathways to help build a qualified workforce and give Oakland’s youth the skills and internship opportunities they need to become a visible part of Oakland’s burgeoning economy. Oakland businesses are key partners in EBCF’s students’ overall success. A growing number sponsor scholarships, provide internship opportunities, and are encouraging mentorship and volunteering among staff. The East Bay College serves 1,000 Oakland students – 600 in high school and 400 in college. For more information contact Executive Director Diane Dodge at (510) 836-8900, To learn more about Mayor Schaaf’s key education initiatives, including Classrooms2Careers, contact Director of Education David Silver, by emailing to ■

18 | OBR Oakland Business Review |

education continues to impact ▲ Student speakers M. them today. Shawn Cunningham II Matt Hearns, Class of 2006, and Francesca Kelly (both Class of 2016) shared who works in operations and moving stories about the marketing at Uber, said that impact of their O’Dowd O’Dowd’s academic rigor, education at last year’s supportive community and Transforming Lives Dinculture of empathy helped form ner, an event that raised him into the person he is now. more than $200,000 for “I feel like I can be put into any the school’s financial aid situation and I’d do alright program. because I came from O’Dowd, he said. “I find myself, day after day, so lucky to have been part of this strong school.” To find out more about O’Dowd event sponsorship opportunities, including this fall’s 2015 Transforming Lives Dinner, contact Cathy McFann at or at (510) 577-9100, ext. 303. ■

> Fred Finch

– continued from page 15

Area businesses including Ascentis, Suhr Risk Services, Torrey Pines Bank, Armanino-McKenna, Radford, Perfect Video Consulting, and Town Kryer are sponsoring the event which will be held at the beautiful Claremont Country Club in Oakland. In addition to enjoying a full day of golf and hospitality, participants in the event will be raising funds to support the critical services offered by Fred Finch Youth Center. To register or learn about remaining sponsorship opportunities, visit or call (510) 485-5239. ■ Tara DeRosa is director of development at Fred Finch Youth Center.

Member update



Cascade Training Center

ADDENDUM The following is a list of new members of the Oakland Metropolitan Chamber of Commerce and is an addendum to the Chamber’s 2015 Membership Directory & Buyers Guide. Please keep this page and refer to these members when you have a need for goods and services. Active Sports Clubs 1200 Clay St. Oakland, CA 94612 (510) 895-1010 Website: Ken Brendel Email: Health & Fitness Program Cascade Training Center 1333 Broadway, Suite P100 Oakland, CA 94612 (510) 488-6192 Website: Clayton Clabaugh Health Care Services Devlabs LLC 1305 Franklin St., Suite 250 Oakland, CA 94612 (510) 333-7338 Website: Ruben Hernandez Computer Software Scarlett Carson 484 Chetwood St. Oakland, CA 94610 (510) 502-4440 Website: Deborah Carson Manufacturers Service Opportunity for Seniors / Meals on Wheels 2235 Polvorosa Ave., Suite 260 San Leandro, CA 94577 (510) 582-1263 Website: Connie McCabe Nonprofit Socotra Capital 2208 29th St. Sacramento, CA 95817 (510) 984-3685 Website: Chris Baumann Real Estate Loans U.S. Army Recruiting Center, Alameda 2651 Blanding Ave., Suite J Alameda, CA 94501 (510) 387-9090 Website: Derek Hood Government Agency

Cascade Training Center “Oakland” is the company’s sixth and newest location. Since 2002 the company has been a provider of outsourced national standards compliance training for the hospital and pre-hospital market with clients ranging from small physicians groups and Fire and EMS departments to multi-location hospital systems with 1000+ beds. Cascade’s size and experience allows its clients medical facilities to refocus education resources on internal programs while shifting compliance training and all of the associated overhead (customer support, materials, registration, training rooms, document retention for audits and reporting) to Cascade. The company’s network of instructors and training sites credential over 100,000 healthcare providers every year in courses like BLS, ACLS, PEARS, PALS, TNCC, NRP and many more. Cascade is Joint Commission certified and authorized to train in all 50 states by American Heart Association and approved through the Emergency Nurses Association, American Academy of Pediatrics, National Association of EMTs and the American College of Surgeons. In addition to being one of the largest providers of AHA Advanced Life Support Courses in the U.S., they also provide AMA PRA Category 1 Credit™ for many of their offerings. Cascade’s mission is “Returning patients home to their loved ones through world class training.” ■

Scarlett Carson Handbag Company Oakland based handbag company, Scarlett Carson, trains disadvantaged women how to design and make one-of-a-kind beautiful handbags. The organization prides itself on giving women practical skills and a new vocation in life to keep them off the streets and improve their lives. Scarlett Carson is a manufacturer of unique handbags that are created by women who once lived on the streets, were addicts, and/or incarcerated. The program, created by Oakland Interior Designer Deborah Carson, helps women stay off the streets by giving them a sense of purpose, pride in the work they produce, and a independent and sustainable financial path. The bags are made from discarded drapery fabric books and samples donated by showrooms at the San Francisco Design Center and all the fittings and leather is purchased in the U.S. The name Scarlett is a nod to Scarlett O’Hara who used drapery fabric to make a dress. Carson believes the key to keeping women from relapsing is giving them a sense of purpose and something to create. The women come to her studio in Jack London Square 3-4 days a week, and as Carson notes, “at the end of the day have developed their skills and produced beautiful items, to be admired and proud of.” ■

Socotra Capital Socotra Capital is a premier hard money lender in California serving real estate investors and business owners. It assists in obtaining loans that might be otherwise unattainable. Its hard money loans benefit investors, property owners, and business owners seeking financing for business purposes, residential, or commercial projects, including fix and flips, short sales, ground-up construction, buy and holds, and REOs, to mention a few. With Socotra Capital’s hard money loan programs, you can feel assured that you will achieve your objectives. The Socotra Capital team aims to move your loan quickly, with a 5-15 day delivery to ensure that your business needs are timely met. Chris Baumann and his team at Socotra Capital specialize in serving business owners and investors in Oakland and throughout California. The team focuses on understanding your needs in your local and regional market and on providing the necessary solutions. With equity-based underwriting guidelines, a focus on equity and the borrower’s business experience, and by utilizing real estate as the collateral, Socotra Capital leads the private lending industry. Loans are available to individuals, trusts, business entities, and self-directed IRAs. In its partnerships, it finds creative solutions for your lending needs. ■

Umpqua Bank 450 Sansome St. San Francisco, CA 94111 (415) 248-8025 Website: Ray Ruffin Bank

AUGUST 2015 | 19

> News from the Port Retired investment banker Earl Hamlin has been elected president of the Port of Oakland Board of Port Commissioners. The Board also elected past president of the Board Alan Yee as 1st vice president. Commissioner Michael Colbruno was chosen as 2nd vice president. Hamlin, a Earl Hamlin corporate finance and venture capital expert, was the Board’s 2nd vice president for the past year. He previously served on the Alameda County Planning Commission, the Alameda County Economic Development Advisory Board and was treasurer Joan Story

of the Chabot Space & Science Center. In addition, prominent real estate attorney Joan Story has been appointed to the Board of Port Commissioners. The City Council appointed Story, a partner in the international law firm of Sheppard, Mullin, Richter & Hampton. Mayor Libby Schaaf nominated her to the fouryear term. Story has more than 35 years of experience representing developers, foreign and institutional investors and corporate users of commercial real estate. The Council also reappointed incumbent Port Commissioner Ces Butner to an additional term. ■

> Corona appointed to Mayor’s staff Mayor Libby Schaaf has announced that Jose Corona will join her administration as the director of Equity and Strategic Partnerships. In this role, Corona will be responsible for creating, coordinating and facilitating public and private philanthropic partnerships fostering equitable opportunities and benefits for Jose Corona the people of Oakland. Working as the chief executive officer of Inner City Advisors (ICA) since 2005, an Oakland-based nonprofit, Corona established a reputation as a visionary leader who builds mindful and creative organizational cultures that yield high impact and results. He led ICA to becoming a nationally recognized, award-winning organization for its work on scaling small businesses and entrepreneurs as a way to create good jobs, especially for people with highest need. ■

> The Point hosts Chamber reception

The Chamber’s After Five Reception in July was hosted by The Point at Rockridge, an urban retirement community with a suburban atmosphere. Located at 4500 Gilbert St. just off Pleasant Valley Road, The Point offers services for independent, assisted living and memory care. Its approach is to provide senior living options that are exemplified in the quality, service, value and warmth of the community. At the reception (above), held on The Point’s second floor patio, executive director Kirsten Korfhage (second from the left) and community marketing director Sandi Truesdell welcome Chamber Chairman of the Board Mark Everton (left) and Board member David Stein. ■

20 | OBR Oakland Business Review |

> Mills College president to speak at Women in Business Alecia DeCoudreaux, the president of Mills College, will be the guest speaker at the East Bay Women in Business Luncheon on Friday, Oct. 2 at the Waterfront Hotel in Jack London Square. She will speak on “An Inspiring Leader’s Keys to Success.”

DeCoudreaux is only the 13th president of Mills in its 163-year history. DeCoudreaux has an extensive and distinguished professional background. Prior to being named Mills president, she was a senior executive at Eli Lilly and Company, one of Fortune magazine’s “Global Top Companies for Leaders,” and has served in a variety of important executive leadership roles over the span of the past three decades. As both a graduate of a women’s college and as chair of the board of Wellesley, one of the largest and most selective women’s colleges in the nation, DeCoudreaux provides Mills with a multifaceted professional background. Her professional career is enhanced by extensive involvement in the communities where she has lived and worked, including volunteerism, community activism, and a record of service on numerous charitable and nonprofit boards. Her academic experience includes successful service as both a trustee and board chair at Wellesley, director of the Wellesley College Alumnae Association, director of the Indiana University Foundation, and member of the Indiana University School of Law Board of Visitors. As always, the luncheon will be coupled with lively and results-oriented Alecia DeCoudreaux networking. Bring a friend or co-worker, plenty of business cards, and be ready to mingle. Check-in and networking begin at 11:15 a.m. The cost for the luncheon is $40 for Chamber members and $50 for non-members if paid before October 1. After that date prices increase $5. Reservations must be pre-paid to guarantee seating. Attend this East Bay Women in Business Roundtable luncheon and be entered to win two roundtrip tickets to any Southwest Airlines destination. The winner must be present to win at the Oct. 2, 2015 luncheon. The Chamber thanks series sponsors Southwest Airlines and the Alameda County Small Business Development Center. ■

> BART to shut down transbay service in early September Perhaps you’ve heard: BART has launched an unprecedented shutdown of train travel across the San Francisco Bay in order to make critical track repairs. The second of two shutdowns will begin Saturday, Sept. 5 and end just in time for train service to resume Tuesday, Sept. 8. Labor Day weekend will indeed be labor-intensive for BART crews. An army of track workers, electricians and other crafts people will descend on a critical half-mile section of track between West Oakland Station and the entrance to the Transbay Tube. It’s a continuation of the work the crews started during the first shutdown, Aug. 1-2. When they finish, riders will experience a smoother, quieter ride through this section of track. BART will offer lifeline bus service between 19th Street in Oakland and the temporary Transbay Terminal in San Francisco, but the buses are intended only for those who have no other options. The buses will carry customers from 19th Street Station in Oakland to the temporary Transbay Terminal in San Francisco (a two-block walk to the Embarcadero Station) or from there back to the East Bay. There will be no additional charge for the bus. The bus bridge will cause one to two-hour delays for some customers. Accommodations will be available for people with disabilities. There will be some shuttle buses from West Oakland Station, which will be closed, to the 19th Street Station for West Oakland area residents only. During the shutdowns, customers are encouraged to use other public transit transbay options such as ferries and AC Transit service. Check out for trip planning. Riders are encouraged to lock their bikes at BART stations rather than bringing them on crowded buses. During the shutdowns, train service within the East Bay and within the West Bay and the Peninsula will be more frequent than during a typical weekend. ■

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AUGUST 2015 | 21

> ‘Boards of Directors’ is subject for Nonprofit Roundtable by Jerry Metzker

All companies are required by law to have a Board of Directors, and nonprofits are no different in that respect. For nonprofits, Board members are principal volunteers who hold tremendous responsibility for the organization. The Chamber’s July Nonprofit Roundtable covered a variety of aspects of the Board, including the roles and responsibilities (as a group and as individuals), how an organization builds its Board, and what it means to serve on a Board.

money, and using our connections to support the organization. I am not a Board member just once a month; I am a Board member every time I meet a person.” Both Etcheverry and Blackburn said that it was essential for good Board members to be well-informed about their responsibilities and get some kind of training. For younger professionals, serving on Boards enhances your resume, and helps them make professional connections. ■ Jerry Metzker and Âna-Marie Jones are co-chairs of the Chamber’s Nonprofit Roundtable. Jones is executive director of CARD – Collaborating Agencies Responding to Disasters, and Metzker is development and grants manager for Family Connections. The Roundtable meets on the third Tuesday of every month from 2:30-4:30 p.m. in the Chamber Board room.

> A new location – and ribbon cutting

Briefly, nonprofit boards of directors ▲ At the Nonprofit Roundtable meeting, have three overarching responsibilities: co-chairs Ana-Marie Jones 1) governance, including fiscal oversight; (left) and Jerry Metzker 2) support the executive director: and welcome guest speakers 3) outreach/fundraising. Tina Etcheverry (second from the left) and Jill Guest presenter Jill Blackburn, director Blackburn. of Programs at the Volunteer Center (, talked about the many Board-focused services her organization provides for organizations, individuals, and companies. “We started performing Board service about 12 years ago,” says Blackburn, “primarily to help organizations diversify their boards. We’re most known for our annual BoardMatch event, which is held each spring in San Francisco, drawing 1,100 Board member prospects and 150 member-seeking nonprofits. This is a great opportunity for the two to meet and greet.” And “yes,” she joked, “it’s kind of like speed dating, but we also work with participating nonprofits on following up.” Other Board-based activities of the Volunteer Center include hosting a Bay Area Corporate Volunteer Council comprised of corporate engagement officers who meet regularly and share experiences and best practices; holding trainings for individuals who want to serve on Boards; and matching corporate executives to the Boards of specific organizations. “Being a Board member is a lot of work, yet very rewarding,” noted guest speaker Tina Etcheverry, who sits on the Board of Biotech Partners ( “I joined the Board because it was relevant to what I was. I was a Genentech scientist for 25 years, and the organization was about training youth to work in biotech. The organization was local, and it was an opportunity to give back. One of our primary responsibilities is that we have to be involved in raising

22 | OBR Oakland Business Review |

1st United Services Credit Union has been providing financial services to locals since 1932, and now has a new location at 6300 College Ave. in Rockridge within the Safeway retail complex.

At the recent ribbon cutting, Chairman of ▲ Holding the scissors are Victor Quint, presithe Board Howard Garrigan holds the scissors dent and chief executive with Branch Manager Chenoa Denard. Chief officer; and Chenoa Executive Officer Victor Quint stands beDenard, branch manager. tween them. Howard Garrigan, chairman of the Board of DiAs a not-for-profit financial institution, rectors; stands in 1st United Services prides itself on lower fees between the two. for checking accounts, lower rates on loans and credit cards, and higher rates on savings accounts. It also offers member-only pricing on insurance. Membership is available to anyone who lives or works in Alameda or Contra Costa County. 1st United Services now has nine East Bay Area locations as well as online and mobile banking. For more information, visit ■

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.

Small Business Seminar Series

‘What’s Your Solar Strategy?’


Darlene Crane to speak

| SEPT. 9

with Christopher Thornberg

‘State of the State’ panel discussion

| SEPT. 11

| AUG. 14

Women in Business


Mills College President to speak

| SEPT. 25

| OCT. 2

Keeping you connected and informed

> AUGUST 2015 12 | Ambassador Committee meeting

| noon - 1 p.m.

14 | Ambassador Committee meeting

| noon - 1 p.m.

14 | Economic Development Forum

EX ECU TI VE CO MM I TTE E Chair of the Board MARK EVERTON Waterfront Hotel Vice Chair CHARISSA FRANK FMG Architects GREG CHAN East Bay Municipal Utility District DAN COHEN Full Court Press HILARY PEARSON Sungevity DAVID TUCKER Waste Management of Alameda County ZACK WASSERMAN Ex Officio Corporate Counsel Wendel, Rosen, Black & Dean LLP


SAM NASSIF Creative Hospitality Corporation

JACKIE LYNN RAY Schnitzer Steel Industries


JENNIFER SCANLON Kaiser Permanente DENNIS SCHRAG UCSF Benioff Children’s Hospital Oakland DAVID STEIN Donahue Fitzgerald LLP KEITH TURNER Safeway

RON FOREST Matson Navigation Company

Bj WASHINGTON J.P. Morgan Chase

BENJAMIN HARRISON Colliers International


STAN HEBERT California State University, East Bay

STACEY WELLS Alta Bates Summit Medical Center

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. Editor

HANK MASLER, (510) 874-4808 |

Design/Production Editor

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

$10 for Chamber members, $15 for non-members, and lunch is provided

|3 - 4:30 p.m. featuring representatives from SunCal updating Oak Knoll development, 3-4:30 p.m.

@OaklandChamber #OaklandChamber #TheOaklandAdvantage

| 2:30 – 4:30 p.m.

9 | Ambassador Committee meeting

ED MCFARLAN JRDV Urban International

| noon - 1 p.m.

18 | Nonprofit Roundtable Committee meeting


KIM ARNONE Cutting Edge Capital

ALISON BEST Visit Oakland

featuring guest speaker Darlene Crane, owner of PCI Crane Consulting, presenting “Don’t Panic About Money, Talk About It,” $10 for Chamber members, $15 for nonmembers, and lunch is provided




| noon - 1 p.m.

KEN LOWNEY Lowney Architecture



14 | Small Business Seminar series

16 | Small Business Seminar series

| noon - 1 p.m. 9 | Economic Development Forum

|3 - 4:30 p.m. featuring a discussion of “What’s Your Solar Strategy,” with Dave Dunlap, chief development officer for Sungevity, and Steve Birndorf, Sungevity’s director of commercial development; learn how solar power is helping businesses save money and reduce uncertainty about future energy costs

11 | Oaklanders Talk Tech | 8 - 10 a.m. featured speakers include Mayor Libby Schaaf, Christopher Thornberg of Beacon Economics, and Pandora CFO Mike Herring, as well as tech entrepreneurs discussing “Key priorities for developing Oakland’s technology ecosystem,” hosted by Pandora (2100 Franklin St., 7th floor), with major sponsor Comcast and panel sponsor Donahue Fitzgerald LLP, Friday, Sept. 11

15 | Nonprofit Roundtable Committee meeting | 2:30 – 4:30 p.m.

24 | After 5 Reception | 5:30 -- 7:30 p.m. law offices of Burnham Brown, 1901 Harrison St., 14th floor

25 | Inside Oakland Breakfast Forum | 10 - 11:30 a.m. featuring a discussion on the “State of the State,” with Assemblymembers Rob Bonta and Tony Thurmond, and State Senator Loni Hancock, with special meeting time

> OCTOBER 2015 2 | East Bay Women in Business luncheon

| 11:15 a.m. - 1:30 p.m. featuring Mills College President Alecia DeCoudreaux, discussing “An Inspiring Leader’s Keys to Success,” Waterfront Hotel in Jack London Square

AUGUST 2015 | 23

> About Town – News from the BIDs

The following is another in a series of columns featuring news and events in Oakland’s Business Improvement Districts (BIDs).

> Downtown Oakland and Lake Merritt-Uptown ‘Oakland Central’ – The heart of Oakland The Downtown Oakland and Lake Merritt-Uptown District associations recently launched a new and exciting, Downtown Oakland-focused, lifestyle and destination marketing campaign called “Oakland Central.” In addition to showcasing Downtown Oakland as a great place to live, work and play, this campaign is designed to promote existing businesses and cultural activities from Uptown to Jack London, from Lake Merritt to Old Oakland and everything in between. The cornerstone of the campaign is a dynamic new web platform,, that will continue to evolve with the creative input of content partners and will allow the Downtown Oakland community to share their stories, events and happenings and celebrate the excitement and beauty of Downtown Oakland. The Oakland Central campaign highlights “the heartbeat of the central business district.” “From amazing arts and entertainment hubs like the Uptown and Art Murmur and Jack London Square, to some of the country’s best restaurants, tech companies and co-working spaces, from awesome events like the Art + Soul Festival to the Oakland Music Festival to fabulous, small, independent, retail businesses, Downtown Oakland has it all!” said Steve Snider, district manager of the Downtown Oakland and Lake Merritt/Uptown Community Benefit Districts. Oakland Central also serves as a hub that provides informational links to residential offerings, as well as business support links. “One of the goals here is to provide resources to those who wish to do business or live in or around the Broadway Corridor,” Snider continued. He also makes note of the fact that the platform includes public transit and parking informational links, complete with a central map created by Visit Oakland. Oakland Central is a great resource for potential employees, new businesses looking to relocate, current and future residents, and visitors alike. Oakland Central would like to encourage Downtown Oakland-based business owners, artists, activists and change-makers to go to the website,, and fill out and submit the online feature request form for inclusion on the website. Local events can also be shared with a separate online form. Explore, follow and share Oakland Central, the heart of Oakland. ■

> Koreatown Northgate (KONO) Award winner For 15 years, San Francisco magazine has been celebrating excellence in the community. This year, KONO has won First Place for “Best of 2015” for both the “Arts Event” and “Outdoor Bar.” Arts Event: Oakland First Fridays has it all – entertainment, gourmet foods, and walk-in art galleries. Visitors have enjoyed free fashion shows, dance performances, stand-up comedy, live music, and the handmade art goods from local arts and cra vendors. Outdoor Bar: Lost & Found Beer Garden at 2040 Telegraph Ave. Business increases The KONO District’s business increases and community popularity are on a rapid acceleration, as shown by the 45.8 percent increase in sales tax revenue from the 4th Quarter of 2013 to the 4th Quarter of 2014. Due in part to the additional exposure made possible by Oakland First Fridays, the district has had the largest increase in sales tax revenue than any other district. In addition to the First Fridays events, KONO’s sudden influx of restaurants, beer gardens, art galleries, and retail stores has made it one of the most popular and premier shopping, dining, and residential locations in Oakland. By partnering with Pollinator Posse and The Sierra Club, KONO has worked to install bee and butterfly friendly planters, replace broken trees, and plant 83 new trees in the district, improving the appearance as well as the revenue. By working in conjunction with Safety 1st and numerous business owners taking part in the Adopt-a-Spot project, KONO has also helped to keep the streets cleaner. ‘Her Resilience’ “Her Resilience” is an ongoing public arts project founded and directed by Hazel Streete, KONO's executive assistant. The purpose of Her Resilience is to disrupt the status quo of public art, intentionally creating public space that addresses women's issues such as violence, abuse and economic disparity, and that showcases the artistic works of women. Though this mission, Her Resilience aims to provide a point of discussion to facilitate healing and bring some of the traumas we all face as a community to light. ■

> Laurel Laurel Street Fair The Laurel District Association will present the 16th annual Laurel Street Fair on Saturday, Aug. 8 from 11a.m. to 6 p.m. Located on MacArthur Boulevard between 35th and 38th avenues, the fair will feature world class music, community yoga, artisan vendors, food trucks and local chefs, the Lauren Biergarten, and a carnival and petting zoo for children. For more information visit ■

> Montclair Woodminster Amphitheater Located within Joaquin Miller Park at the edge of the Montclair District, the outdoor Woodminster Amphitheater will continue its summer series with a production of “The Producers” from Aug. 7-16. The Woodminster is currently running its “Kickstarter” campaign, with pledges helping to fund a better sound system. ■

24 | OBR Oakland Business Review |

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