San Diego Regional EDC welcomes Julian Parra as new board chair

EDC works toward the “right recovery” with new chair leading the way

As San Diego works to recover from a global pandemic and faces systemic race and equity issues that plague all metropolitan economies, EDC continues to drive an inclusive growth and recovery strategy as outgoing Board Chair Janice Brown passes the gavel to Julian Parra.

“While we are all facing many challenges right now, we also see opportunity. I look forward to working with EDC’s team to ensure that all San Diegan’s have access to opportunities so that we can position our region for the right recovery.” said Julian Parra, Region Executive, at Bank of America.

The right recovery is rooted in our inclusive growth work and focuses on ensuring we double down on the building blocks that make for a strong economy by creating skilled talent, economically-stabilizing jobs, and thriving households.

“There is nobody I trust more than Julian to continue this work in a time that San Diego needs it most,“ said outgoing Chair Janice Brown, founder of Brown Law Group, who spearheaded the inclusive growth initiative during her time as chair, “I believe in how EDC’s work has evolved, and will continue to support this organization and team.”

As chair, Parra is supported by four officers:

  • Vice Chair, Rob Douglas, President and COO, ResMed
  • Vice Chair, Jennie Brooks, Senior Vice President, Booz Allen Hamilton
  • Treasurer, Phil Blair, President and CEO at Manpower San Diego
  • Secretary, Tom Seidler, SVP Community & Military Affairs, San Diego Padres

Along with the election of a new chair, EDC’s board also elected three new board members:

  • Tonya Cross, Senior Vice President People & Corporate Operations at Lytx Inc
  • Heather Ace, Executive Vice President of Human Resources at Qualcomm Inc
  • Sandra McDonough, Partner at Paul Plevin Sullivan and Connaughton LLP

EDC is a membership-based non-profit organization that mobilizes government and civic leaders around an inclusive economic development strategy in order to connect data to decision making, maximize regional prosperity, enhance global competitiveness and position San Diego effectively for investment and talent. The organization’s nearly 200 investors range from small businesses like Brown Law Group, to the region’s largest employers like Qualcomm and SDG&E, to the leading anchor institutions such as universities and hospitals.

THE RIGHT RECOVERY

Over the last two decades, San Diego’s economy has more than doubled in size. Meanwhile, the typical household has seen its income increase at roughly half that rate. The impacts of COVID-19 have likely exasperated income inequities, disproportionately affecting the parts of the community historically disconnected from opportunities.

The right recovery means putting systems into place that ensure that as we rebuild our economy, we are doing so in a thoughtful and resilient way, that ensures all San Diegans can benefit from our region’s future growth.

“I am the first one to acknowledge that EDC has not always been focused on inclusive strategies. When Janice became chair, we were just beginning to understand how San Diego – as a region – has missed out on economic opportunity by creating racial disparities. We have an opportunity to ensure that we are pivoting programming and putting systems into place so we do not widen racial and economic inequities as our region recovers.  Nobody understands these responsibilities more than Julian,” said Mark Cafferty, EDC’s president & CEO.

To address these inequities, EDC has pivoted and launched programming aligning with the three pillars: skilled talent, economically-stabilizing jobs and thriving households. With the majority of San Diegans employed by small and medium size businesses (SMBs), San Diego has set a goal to create 50K economically-stabilizing jobs by 2030. To help achieve that goal, EDC programs such as MetroConnect and Advancing San Diego will continue in a virtual capacity, providing export assistance and paid internship programs, respectively.

We hope you’ll join us as we work to create a more equitable and prosperous San Diego, for all who live here.

Meet our Board: Cheryl Goodman

Meet our Board: Cheryl Goodman

Meet Cheryl Goodman, head of corporate communications at Sony Electronics. Read the Q&A below, get to know Cheryl and find out why she is proud to have Sony Electronics’ North American headquarters located here in San Diego.

What is your “day job”?

Every day, in Corporate Communications for Sony, I unearth and translate the deep tech that makes press, employees, and the general public excited to have Sony products not only in their homes, but to have Sony Headquartered in their hometown—#HelloSanDiego. Working alongside Sony President Mike Fasulo, we are on the road nearly every week to talk tech from sensors, to standards, to 8K, to robotics, to Hollywood events at Sony Pictures or Sony Corp in Tokyo. Sony is a creative entertainment company with deep technology roots, and I’m fortunate to be able to illustrate how we move people emotionally though epic content & our best-in-class technology.

Of all the boards in San Diego, why EDC?

EDC gathers relevant leaders surrounding key topics to make business move forward…and it’s fun. Summer Bash, anyone?

Favorite quote?

“Be the CEO your mom wanted you to marry.”

We know San Diego is a life changing place, what was your life changing moment?

Leaving a great paying job at a great company to start my own business in 2013 reconfirmed to me that the only limits in life are the ones we put on ourselves. I left because I didn’t like my title or future growth path, those things changed and so did my life.

What is your favorite EDC program or initiative?

San Diego: Life. Changing.

Meet our Board: Dennis Doucette

Meet our Board: Dennis Doucette

For the next installment in our Board Member Spotlight series, we are pleased to introduce Dennis Doucette, partner at Procopio, Cory, Hargreaves & Savitch, LLP. Read the Q&A below and get to know Dennis and how he effects San Diego’s economic development outside of his role as one of EDC’s board members.

What is your “day job”?

I assist in company forming, funding, and selling. As a corporate attorney, I help my clients realize their goals with efficient legal and business solutions. I have been fortunate to have worked on more than 400 transactions representing buyers, sellers, and investors.

Of all the boards in San Diego, why EDC?

I have served on many for-profit and non-profit boards and look forward to assisting EDC in its mission to make San Diego a better place for all companies and their employees.

Favorite quote?

“It often requires more courage to dare to do right than fear to do wrong.”

– Abraham Lincoln

We know San Diego is a life changing place, what was your life changing moment?

Meeting my wife Margot and enjoying every day together.

What is your favorite EDC program or initiative?

Direct economic support to companies.

San Diego Regional EDC welcomes new board of directors

EDC welcomed 10 new directors to its board, with Janice Brown, founder of Brown Law Group, continuing to serve as chair through May 2020. The board will help guide the programs and initiatives for the privately-funded, nonprofit organization with more than 180 investors.

“I’m thrilled to continue serving as board chair of EDC,” said Janice Brown, founder of Brown Law Group and chair of EDC. “EDC’s board is now stronger than ever. With our pool of dedicated board members, we will be able to set an impactful agenda for all of San Diego’s economy, lifting every community in our region. I truly believe there’s no mountain high enough for us to overcome, San Diego!”

EDC’s board is comprised of elected directors and trustees representing partner organizations in the business community. Directors are vetted by EDC’s governance committee and elected annually by its membership to serve two-year terms. For 2019, 25 directors were re-elected alongside 10 new directors. Two new trustees were also appointed by the organization’s executive committee. The board represents executives from companies, organizations, institutions and the military along with elected officials, who are all working cohesively to advance San Diego’s economy.

“Thanks to the support from our investors, board and the entire San Diego business community, EDC is working to positively shape the region’s future.” said Mark Cafferty, president and CEO, San Diego Regional EDC. “Together, we can make San Diego a better place to live and work for all residents and businesses.”

2019 Officers:

  • Chair – Janice Brown, Founder at The Brown Law Group
  • Vice Chair – Rob Douglas, President and COO at ResMed, Inc.
  • Vice Chair – Julian Parra, Business Banking Executive at Bank of America Merrill Lynch
  • Treasurer – June Komar, Executive Vice President at Scripps Health
  • Secretary – Phil Blair, President and CEO at Manpower San Diego
  • Mark Cafferty, President and CEO at San Diego Regional EDC

Newly elected Directors:

  • Dennis Doucette, Partner at Procopio, Cory, Hargreaves & Savitch LLP
  • Cheryl Goodman, Head of Corporate Communications at Sony Electronics
  • Dan Harrington, EVP and Chief Services Officer at Teradata
  • Don Kearns, President Emeritus at Rady Children’s Hospital
  • Mark Navarra, Managing Partner at Jerome’s Furniture
  • Mike Neal, President and CEO at HG Fenton
  • Tom Pellette, President at Solar Turbines
  • Greg Richardson, Lead Advisor at Dowling & Yahnke
  • Manuel Rodriguez, Market President at US Bank
  • Matt Thoene, CEO at AIS

Newly appointed Trustees:

  • Hasan Ikhrata, Executive Director at San Diego Association of Governments (SANDAG)
  • Jim Madaffer, Board Chair at San Diego County Water Authority

On the horizon for 2019

With and through its investors, EDC will remain focused on sustaining and growing existing initiatives and programs including San Diego: Life. Changing, the Defense Innovation Voucher Program, regional research and Innovate78. World Trade Center San Diego, an affiliate of EDC, will continue to drive an international agenda for San Diego through programs including MetroConnect as well as an upcoming trade mission to Germany in late 2019.

Additionally, EDC will continue to support companies of all sizes with their growth efforts by assisting with regulatory/permitting support, economic incentive consulting, strategic partnerships and more. EDC services are underwritten by its investors that believe in creating a more prosperous San Diego, and are free-of-charge to companies looking to expand, stay or locate in the San Diego region. In 2018 alone, EDC directly assisted more than 170 companies, which represented approximately 7,000 jobs in San Diego.

Announced in April, EDC will be launching Advancing San Diego, which is made possible through a $3 million grant provided by the JPMorgan Chase AdvancingCities initiative. This grant will complement EDC’s ongoing inclusive growth strategy. In collaboration with City of San Diego, San Diego and Imperial Counties Community College Association (SDICCCA), San Diego Workforce Partnership and United Way of San Diego County, the program seeks to strengthen the region’s local workforce by enhancing relationships between employers and education systems.

Meet our Board: David Andrews

For our next Board Member Spotlight, we are pleased to introduce David Andrews, president of National University. Read the Q&A below and get to know David, the work he is doing with National University, and why serving on EDC’s board is important to him.

What is your “day job”?

I have the privilege of leading National University, the second largest private, nonprofit university in the state. Having spent all of my career in higher education, it is very rewarding to run an open-access, adult-serving institution that is changing student’s lives and transforming the higher education sector.

Of all the boards in San Diego, why EDC?

Economic conditions in San Diego are central to our ability to attract and retain talented faculty, staff, and students. As an open-access, adult-serving institution in California, we need to be at the table and doing our part to maximize opportunities for our students.

Favorite quote?

“No problem can be solved from the same consciousness that created it.” –Albert Einstein

We know San Diego is a life changing place, what was your life changing moment?

My life-changing moment was when I found my wife, Marti, nearly four decades ago. All who knew me before meeting her regularly attest to the positive transformation she made in my life.

What is your favorite EDC program or initiative?

San Diego: Life. Changing.

Meet our Board: Dan Broderick

For our next Board Member Spotlight, we are pleased to introduce Dan Broderick, who is Regional Managing Principal for the Southwest region at Cushman & Wakefield. Read the Q&A below and get to know Dan, the work he does for Cushman & Wakefield, and why he’s proud to serve on EDC’s board.

What is your “day job”?

At Cushman & Wakefield, I lead all of our commercial real estate services lines for the Southwest region – Brokerage (Occupier and Investor), Capital Markets, Asset Services, Construction Management, and Valuation & Advisory. In San Diego, we are the market leader in the full spectrum of real estate services throughout the county, operating out of five offices with approximately 250 people in the region.

Of all the boards in San Diego, why EDC?

EDC exemplifies what is great about San Diego: our demographics, our talent, our resources, our community, and our culture. EDC is the intersection where information, politics, business, trade, and technology converge for the betterment of our region. It is the gold standard for collaboration and creating a cohesive vision for the future of our great home, San Diego.

Favorite quote?

“The choice isn’t between success and failure; it’s between choosing risk and striving for greatness, or risking nothing and being certain of mediocrity.” – Keith Ferrazi

We know San Diego is a life changing place, what was your life changing moment?

In 2010, I was asked to be the CEO of BRE Commercial, a 25 year-old San Diego firm. I will forever cherish the experiences and relationships I developed. Nine years later, we have achieved what we set out to do. We have become a premier global firm and a leader in the region. We work with amazing people, who are talented, dedicated, driven, and leaders in the industry. I am proud to work with all of them, and to be on this great journey together.

What is your favorite EDC program or initiative?

San Diego: Life. Changing.