"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.

2009 CIT Session III
SAN FRANCISCO–California's Economy: Opportunities & Challenges

Board of Directors Meets Prior to Session III    
Members of the Leadership California Board of Directors met in San Francisco at the offices of Sheppard Mullin on August 1 and 2. The Board is a diverse, hardworking team from business, community and government organizations across California. The Board supports the organization by promoting outreach and recruitment, developing financial resources and sponsorships, planning the annual Awards Dinner, promoting regional council activities, guiding marketing efforts and charting the future course of the CIT program. Leadership California president Dr. Cathleen Greiner (front row, center) and Pamela Hemann, Executive Director, presided. Meet individual members of the board HERE.  
Leveraging the Power of Networks     

Sally Helgesen presented "Leveraging the Power of Your Networks" at start of Session III.

Sally Helgesen, author of "The Female Advantage," shared insights on networking and business leadership from her studies on gender in the corporate environment. Her talk was "Leveraging the Power of Your Networks." In past decades, men built corporate cultures and and thrived, while women had to adapt to fit in and strive to overcome a perceived gender handicap. Helgesen advised women leaders to capitalize on their leadership strengths and find ways to change organizations from within instead of changing themselves.
Lessons Learned on the Journey    

Jenny Mack ('09) introduced a panel of speakers in "Women Leaders: Lessons Learned on the Journey." 

Panelists shared stories of their motivation and passion to achieve as they filled management roles. "Take the 'me' out of 'manage'," said Robin MacGillivray.
"Lessons Learned" panelists, from left, included Mirian Saez, Director of Operations, Treasure Island Development Authority; Robin MacGillivray, Senior Vice President, Small Business Solutions Centers, AT&T  Operations, Inc.; Catherine Dodd, Deputy Chief of Staff, City of San Francisco Mayor's Office; and Kaye Lindsey, CPCU, California Operations Vice President, State Farm Insurance Companies.
Class in Session
The class met for table discussions after "Lessons Learned on the Journey," where they shared personal stories of leadership challenges.
California's Global Economy    

Leadership California Executive Director Pam Hemann introduced speaker Kei Matsuda, Director of Economic Research, Union Bank.

Kei Matsuda gave a presentation on "California's Global Economy: What's Fueling It–What's Not."

CIT Classmember Allysunn Williams shares a one-on-one moment with the economist.
Green Economics    

Classmembers learned about "greenomics" at the presentation "Green Economics: Innovation & Growth."

Severin Borenstein and Cathrine Wolfram of the Haas School of Business, UC Berkeley, discussed the opportunities to bring together public policy and green business in California.

Cathrine Wolfram represented the Center for Energy and Environmental Innovation at UC Berkeley. Severin Borenstein was from the UC Energy Institute.

Table discussions hosted by current classmembers followed the "Green Opportunities & Innovations" segment. Selena Ingram reported on "Greening of IT at Symantec."

Sylvia Andrew was table host at "Developing a Consumer-Oriented Green Awareness Program at AAA."

Denise Brosseau hosted a table discussion on "Expanding Resources to Meet Demand at Pacific Gas & Electric Company."


Visit to Cisco, Inc. in Silicon Valley    

The CIT class left the San Francisco financial district and traveled to the Silicon Valley, home of the San Jose headquarters of Cisco, Inc.

Classmembers arrive for the Cisco tour.

Every floor at Cisco has a concierge desk, staffed by a live video feed from a real–not virtual–concierge, who provides for the needs of clients, staff and guests. 

Classmembers check out a giant phone.

The class tested out Cisco's TelePresence, a video conferencing product that has allowed company executives to cut business travel by nearly one-third. 

On the tour, video presentations highlighted the company's decades of technical innovation.

A product demonstration gallery was a stop on the tour.

Video-editing applications and a bicycle-powered computer were on display among an array of products.

Cisco engineers led early development of Internet Protocol-based networking technologies. The company's hardware, software, and services create routing and switching connections for Internet networks. Cisco has more than 66,500 employees and ten divisions worldwide: Networking Data Centers, Digital Media, IPICS, Mobility, Security, Storage Networking, TelePresence, Unified Communications, Video, and Virtualization.

A wine and hors d'oeuvres reception attended by the class of 2009, CIT Alumnae and guests was hosted by the Cisco Women's Action Network and Leadership California’s Silicon Valley Regional Council.

Laura Ipsen, Cisco's Senior Vice President, Global Policy & Government Affairs, highlighted her years in management and discussed increasing levels of opportunity for female executives at the company.

From left, Jennifer Harris ('08), Sylvia Andrew ('09) and Michele Nealon-Woods ('09) with Laura Ipsen.
Savvy Business Alliances,
Education to Workforce

Larraine Segil, Larraine Segil Inc., spoke on strategic business alliances and the art of negotiation. She is a senior research fellow at the University of Texas and lecturer on global business alliances at Caltech in Pasadena.

Segil wrote "Measuring the Value of Partnering: How to Use Metrics to Plan, Develop and Implement Successful Alliances."

Segil signs copies of her book for classmembers, from left, Karen Perkins, Anh Vo, and Susan Berk.

Hans Johnson, Associate Director of Research and Senior Fellow, Public Policy Institute of California, discussed "Education to Workforce: Filling the Pipeline," on closing the gap in the state's educational resources to meet present and future needs for a trained workforce.

Cable cars speed past the hotel window along California Street as Session III winds down. Next stop, San Diego!

See you there on November 8!



Alumnae Login | REGISTER for Events | About Us | People | Activities | Calendar | Women Leaders: First Person Profiles | Watch our Videos | Contact Us | Subscribe to our e-News | Support Us
Privacy Policy