"The program gave me a close-up view of political, business and social issues and trends, information that is invaluable to me as an entrepreneur and active participant in the success of our great state. The speakers were incredible� they inspired us and stretched our minds. The opportunity to connect with successful and dynamic California women leaders was a main highlight. Being part of Leadership California is like being part of a powerful sisterhood."

—Ursula C. Mentjes, M.S., ACC
President and Certified Business Coach
Potential Quest, Inc.
"I have enjoyed my involvement with Leadership California. Our trip to the state capitol was most enlightening. As a result I have gotten involved with the Los Angeles African American Women's Political Action Committee. Thank you, Leadership California, for sparking a genuine interest in the political process."

—Shawn Farrar
Director Corporate Diversity
Sempra Energy
"The CIT program brings together successful women from all over California, and gives them the opportunity to build a network with other successful women. It's a way to learn about the important issues in our state, and to get ready to take the next step in your professional life."

—Isela Vilchis Hoenigmann
"Leadership California has provided me a panoramic view of issues, challenges and opportunities for this lovely state that I live in. The program was my introduction to women of unbelievable talent, experience and passion who are set to make a difference. The feeling to want to be more, to accomplish more, is simply contagious. I hope to know these women for the rest of my life."

—Rosario Montes-Arena
Manager, IBM Software Executive Briefing Program
Silicon Valley & Worldwide Briefing Program
"As a young immigrant woman working in the nonprofit sector, it was inspiring to see women leaders in action, to be able to network with them, and talk about the issues that are relevant to our communities and our state. I feel honored and privileged for the opportunity to participate in such an awesome program that weaves women leaders from different sectors and geographies of California to engage in a conversation about the social, political, and economic fabric of California."

—Winnie Hui-Min Yu
Development Associate
Asian Law Caucus
San Francisco
"I've spent half of my work life in the corporate world, and the past ten years in the nonprofit world, but neither taught me how to be who I am at work�the whole pastiche of talent and spirit. I found role models who excited me, the true state of our state of California (which frustrated me), work partners continually learning like me, and friends."

—Peta G. Penson, Ed. D.
Oakland Unified School District
"Leadership California sessions feature influential speakers and lively discussion on timely issues shaping the economy and workforce. The session on work-life balance struck a chord with me, where key leaders advised us to map out a personal career plan. Networking with other women was invaluable. Leadership California is an engaging and downright fun experience."

—Roberta Tinajero-Frankel
Kaiser Permanente Community Benefit Dept.
Healthy Eating, Active Living Project Manager
"Simply put, Leadership California is time well spent that will benefit me personally and professionally for years to come. I've not only kept in contact with my fellow classmates on a social level, but have had opportunities to work with some of them on business projects as our professional paths crossed. The sessions gave in-depth looks at the critical social issues that many Californians face, inspiring me to get more involved in my community�s outreach programs."

—Teena Massingill
Manager of Corporate Public Affairs
Safeway Inc.

Leadership California is a network of accomplished women, dedicated to advancing the leadership role women play in impacting business, social issues and public policy.

Leadership California is also a unique program, designed to develop and mobilize female leaders. From corporate, academic, state and community organizations across the state, Leadership California draws a diverse group of executive women into its California Issues and Trends Program. Alumnae gain new insights on complex global, national and regional issues facing California.

Message from the President
2014 Program Overview
2015 Program Overview


Its time to apply
for CIT 2015!

Submit an application today
or nominate a woman leader you know as a candidate.


Recruitment Events Across the State: You're Invited! Bring a "Hot Prospect"
as your Guest

A new series of special events is brewing across the state to bring together a diverse group of potential candidates for Leadership California’s 2015 Issues & Trends (CIT) Program.

CIT program Alumnae are mobilizing to draw in a pool of interested candidates. You are invited—Receptions and luncheons for successful executive women from across business sectors, geographic regions and professional backgrounds will launch soon: See our event schedule below!


The events will provide opportunities for alumnae and friends to reconnect and to recruit stellar executive women into the program. Alumnae will speak about their enthusiasm for CIT and their devotion to the women leaders in the CIT network. Recruits will learn about the yearlong program’s opportunities to gain new insights on complex global, national and regional issues facing California, and our new Washington DC program option.

Bring a dynamic woman leader you know

Your “ticket” to the event is to bring a “hot prospect” as your guest: Bring a friend or colleague who is a successful woman executive in a leadership position. Leaders from corporate, government, academic, and community organizations, businesses and entrepreneurships are invited. All events are free, but you must RSVP.

New Program Option: Leadership California Goes to Washington DC
September 27-30, 2015


Alumnae and potential recruits will learn about our Washington DC 2015 Optional Session, a special opportunity for California women leaders to study how national and international issues affect Californians and California business, and how California’s issues and trends influence the nation and the world. LC to DC is available as an add-on to CIT 2015 or may be purchased separately as an individual session.

626-793-7834 or email Carrie Calkins (carrie@leadershipcalifornia.org)
for more information on events in your area


Upcoming Recruitment Events:

Wednesday, October 22 – Reception at Downtown offices of Sheppard Mullin, 5:00-7:00pm (Program at 6pm)

Sheppard Mullen
333 South Hope Street, 43rd Floor
Los Angeles

Hosted by Margie Wheeler, Yvette Herrera, Celina Zacarias

Parking from Hope Street will be validated.
Thanks to our venue host CIT Alumna Sascha Henry!


Wednesday October 29 – Wine Reception at the Capitol
Governor's Council Room
California State Capitol,
4:30-6:30pm (Program at 5:30pm)
Hosted by DeNelle Ellison, Myesha Jackson, Debbie Manning
Thank you to E. & J. Gallo Winery for providing wines for this event.


Friday Nov. 14 – Luncheon
The Grange Restaurant at Citizens Hotel
926 J Street

12:00 noon-1:30pm
Hosted by DeNelle Ellison, Debbie Manning, Eileen Reynolds, Kate Killeen, Beth Percynski, Christy Woods, Rita Chen Fujisawa


Thursday, November 6 – Luncheon Reception & Program
10:00am-1:30pm (Program at 10:00am) CIT overview followed by luncheon program on energy innovation
The SDG&E Energy Innovation Center
4760 Clairemont Mesa Blvd.
San Diego

Hosted by Molly Cartmill, Danell Scarborough, Julie Johnson


Thursday November 13 –Reception and Networking
5:00pm-6:30pm (Program at 5:30pm)
The Center Club
650 Town Center Dr.
Costa Mesa

Hosted by Mary Sue Allen, Ann-Marie Connolly, Christi Haley-Stover, Tammy Wong


Date, time and location to be announced
Hosted by Marily Mondejar, Donna Duhe, Louise McGinnis

November 2014: Date, time and location to be announced
Hosted by Cecily Joseph, Christine Coats

Early 2015: Date, time and location to be announced
Hosted by Sandy Cha, Cindy Matson, Sandra Flores, May Gnia Her


626-793-7834 or email Carrie Calkins (carrie@leadershipcalifornia.org)
for more information on events in your area


DELEGATION OF LEADERS - Leadership California Alumnae and supporters met in the capital for talks with women of note in a delegation from Central and South Asia.

DISCUSSION OF CRITICAL ISSUES - From left, Kate Killeen ('08), Senior Staff Counsel, California Department of Water Resources; Naheeda Thohir, Inspector of Police, Head of Leadership and Training Management Unit, Institute for Security and Law Enforcement Studies, Maldives; Basundara Khadka, Police Inspector and Deputy Director of Human Rights Unit, Nepal Police.


International Women Leaders Delegation Visits Sacramento, Meets with Alumnae

Hosts: Leadership California alumnae and friends and staff of the Northern California World Trade Center

by Dr. Judy Kjelstrom, CIT class of 2008

September 18, 2014—FOURTEEN WOMEN LEADERS CAME from Central and South Asia last week to seek input from California women leaders at a meeting at the capital. Their focus was peace and security, especially in the areas of post-war community building and preventing violence against women. These impressive women represented police departments and NGOs, served as lawyers, teachers and government officials. They came from Bangladesh, India, Kazakhstan, Kyrgyzstan, Maldives, Nepal, Pakistan, Sri Lanka and Tajikistan.

LEADER TO LEADER - Judy Kjelstrom, Ph.D., in yellow, and Eileen Reynolds, right, in a small-group talk with visiting women leaders. Participants agreed that support and mentoring from women can help each woman find her voice.

I WAS HONORED TO BE ASKED TO SHARE with this group the history and mission of Leadership California and the CIT program. I spoke passionately about our mission of “moving women from success to significance.” I shared our collective commitment to equity and the desire to expand our message to all women in our world. I also shared some of our Women in Leadership efforts from UC Davis, where I am director of the university’s biotechnology program. I bought along copies of two DVDs, Girl Rising and Half the Sky, to show how we raise awareness among our graduate students on the issues of inequity, sex trafficking and inadequate access to education and health care. Many women in the delegation said they would like to order these films to show to their communities.

MORE THAN 14 ALUMS AND FRIENDS OF THE PROGRAM joined in a lively discussion. Kate Killeen (‘08), Gerri La Rue Higgs (‘14), Alana Matthews (‘13), Eileen Reynolds (‘12), Tiffany Hunter Green (‘12), Bryn Sullivan (‘13), Margie Estrada ('14), Sandra Perez ('12) and LC friends Diane Boyer Vine and Naima Ford took part. Participants from the Northern California World Trade Center were Renee Taylor (CEO), Tessa Carter (Program Manager), along with their staff and interns.

WE STARTED THE SESSION IN SMALL GROUPS based on backgrounds and interests. I was joined by Carter, Reynolds, Aliya Zhakupova, a teacher from Kazakhstan and Anjana Shrestha, an inspector in the Nepal Police department. It was easy to share our stories since all of the international visitors spoke English. The inspector told us that spousal abuse was a constant issue in Nepal. She felt that lack of education and good jobs were part of this problem.

WE THEN MADE A CIRCLE of chairs and met as one large group. Each woman gave her name, home country and professional title as well as the focus of her work. One impressive woman was Barrister Sadia Arman, who advocates for her clients at the supreme court in Bangladesh. She expressed frustration in her position as one of very few women barristers in her country. The group agreed that self confidence is an ongoing problem in positions where working women are in the minority. Support and mentoring from women can help each woman find her voice. Sadia urged women from Leadership California and the Northern California World Trade Center to help with those efforts.

WE SHARED OUR BUSINESS CARDS and vowed to keep in touch. One police inspector even gave me a badge. I promised to continue the work on the movements Keep the Peace and Protect our Women!



November 5-7, 2014

Sustaining Quality of Life
Through Innovation

GROUNDBREAKING RESEARCH: In San Diego at Session IV, the class will visit the Scripps Institution of Oceanography's Birch Aquarium, where they will tour an extraordinary collection of sea creatures and learn about the devastating effects of climate change on the world's oceans. The class will meet Dr. Margaret Leinen, Director of Scripps Institution of Oceanography & Vice Chancellor for Marine Sciences at UC San Diego, Birch Aquarium at Scripps/UCSD.
POWERED BY INNOVATION: The class will visit the San Diego Gas & Electric Energy Innovation Center for a firsthand look at an energy-efficient "smart home." The parking lot, garage and garden also have "smart" technologies to review.

THE POWER OF COMMUNITY: The class is scheduled to visit the Gary & Mary West Senior Wellness Center for a look at innovation in community service. The Wellness Center provides meals 365 days a year, affordable housing, health and wellness services, and community education classes to thousands of seniors each year. Photo by Kenny Goldberg


CAREER PATHS: "Lessons Learned on the Journey," will feature panelists who share stories about their professional careers.


FAREWELL TO THE CLASS OF 2014: The final session of the year will feature a graduation ceremony and dinner. Above, the Class of 2013 raises a toast.

VIEW more photos/stories HERE


A distinguished panel of women leaders included, from left, Jan Perry, General Manager, Economic & Workforce Development, City of Los Angeles; Sharon L. Tomkins, Acting General Counsel, Southern California Gas Company; Ann McElaney-Johnson, Ph.D., President, Mount St. Mary’s College. Moderator, right, was Barbara Kaufman, Ph.D., President, ROI Consulting Group, Inc.

Key Takeaways from Leaders on the Pathway to Significance

By Barbara Kaufman, Ph.D.
August 1, 2014

I had the privilege of hearing from three gifted leaders about their "Lessons Learned" on Sunday, June 27th, along with the Leadership California Class of 2014 at Session III in Los Angeles. 

Key takeaways from the evening session got to the heart of the passion these leaders feel for their work:

  • Take the time to build trusting relationships and networks and make them a cornerstone of your effective leadership. Transactional leadership is not a long term strategy.
  • Seize opportunities to learn from the informal mentors all around you. Be fully present and mindful to make the most of these opportunities.
  • Let your passion fuel your self-confidence.
  • Reframe self-doubt and demonstrate resiliency. Learn from your failures.
  • Be kind to yourself and retire the superwoman image. Asking for help and recognizing that we can't be all things to all those in our lives at the same time is a strength, not a weakness.
  • If you want to move from success to significance, you must be passionate about contributing to the success of others.

I look forward to Session IV and another opportunity to hear from a panel of women leaders about their journeys!


Barbara Kaufman, Ph.D. is founder and president of ROI Consulting Group, Inc., offering high-value customized programs and services for senior leaders and their teams to accelerate leadership effectiveness, including executive coaching, on-boarding advice, leadership assessment, retreat facilitation, comprehensive performance reviews for senior administrators and board development services. She is an alumna, Class of 1995, and a past-president of Leadership California. www.roiconsultinggroup.com




Home | Alumnae Login | REGISTER for Events | About Us | People | Activities | Calendar | Women Leaders: First Person Profiles | Resources and Links | Subscribe to our e-News | DONATE NOW
Privacy Policy
Web services provided by i4a