"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.

2014 CIT Session II

April 27-29, 2014

"California’s Heritage: Shaping the New California"

THE CLASS OF 2014 met in San Francisco for Session II.

STYLISH RIDE: Class members toured the Wells Fargo Bank Museum and learned about Gold Rush-era history from Marianne Babal, Historian & Vice President, Wells Fargo Historical Services.

STRAIGHT TALK ON DIVERSITY: Kay Iwata, right, gave a presentation on how our preconceptions of others in the workplace can affect teamwork and outcomes.

DEMOGRAPHICS AND TRENDS: With Mary O'Hara Devereaux, Ph.D., the class explored California's demographics and peered into California's future.

A CELEBRATION OF LEADERSHIP - Honorees of the 2014 Legacy of Leadership Awards posed with their awards just after the celebration on April 28.

CHINESE AMERICAN HISTORY and a SERENE GARDEN: The class enjoyed a visit to the Chinese Historical Society of America. In a historic building designed by renowned architect Julia Morgan, the Museum introduces the rich history of the Chinese American experience. Morgan, best known as the architect of Hearst Castle, integrated Chinese motifs within the framework of western architecture.

LEADERSHIP STYLES AND BEHAVIORS: With Barbara L. Kaufman, Ph.D. presenting, the class used an evaluation tool to analyze their leadership strengths.

LESSONS LEARNED: With Barbara Kaufman facilitating, a panel of women leaders shared their experiences.

Connective Leadership Model with
Barbara Kaufman, Ph.D.

Led by Barbara Kaufman, Ph.D., class members evaluated their individual personality traits and rated their leadership strengths according to the Connective Leadership Institute's model of leadership styles. Good leaders learn which style works best in each unique situation.

Barbara Kaufman and Shannon Shellenberg discuss the Achieving Styles Inventory. Each leader has a preferred style of leadership, but it's good to be flexible.

Barbara Kaufman is an alumna ('95) and past-president of Leadership California and serves on its Executive Advisory Council. She is president of ROI Consulting Group, Inc.

Lessons Learned on the Journey
with Women Leaders Panel

A distinguished panel of women leaders included, from left, Marty Gilles, Vice President of Strategy, Planning & Technology, Chevron Corporation; Teresa Briggs, West Region Managing Partner, Deloitte; and Theodora R. Lee, Esq., (’93) Shareholder, Littler Mendelson, P.C.

Hosted by facilitator Barbara Kaufman, Ph.D., the panelists discussed their career trajectories.


Gilles describedher career as "linear": she started at Chevron right out of college. Few women leaders were in the energy industry, but she managed to prove herself. She was tapped for leadership roles but also sought them out.

Briggs, center, is also a career employee at a single company, Deloitte. She was first in her family to graduate from college.

Theo Lee, center, thought she wanted to be a medical doctor or engineer, and tried politics by working for a congressman. "But I'm too direct to be a politician, I'm not diplomatic," she said. She found her passion in courtrooms as a trial lawyer in labor law.

California's Heritage: Themes through the Decades with Marianne Babal    

The class arrived for breakfast and a walk through California history with Marianne Babal, "a Pennsylvanian who came to California two decades ago and found a whole new take on history. In "Women of the Gold Rush" Babal gave a presentation on California history, an overview of Wells Fargo company's history, and a look at womens' contributions to the history of the Golden State.

California's name has its roots in women's history. The region was once believed to be an island populated by an Amazon-like race of women ruled by Queen Califa.

The Gold Rush was an opportunity for entrepreneurial women. "It was an open society, with a need for services beyond the one you could imagine," said Babal. Women established hotels and restaurants in gold mining regions.

Wells Fargo Museum & Tour    

Buying and selling gold was the early cornerstone of the Wells Fargo business. Class members Julia Nader and Felecia Etheridge pose next to a scale for weighing placer gold.

Mark Twain rode one of Wells Fargo's stagecoaches when he came west to write. He called it an "imposing cradle on wheels."

Class members pose with the company's icon, which (uncomfortably) seated 16. The Wells Fargo Company established both banking and express services during the Gold Rush years.

Wells Fargo outstripped competitors by building a network of freight and messenger routes across the country, and banks and offices in key communities bordering the gold fields.

Women filled roles as Wells Fargo agents, telephone operators, and even stagecoach drivers in the Gold Rush era. After 1862, women could open bank accounts in their own name, giving them more economic power.

Historians Marianne Babal, above left, and Glen Myers greeted the class and gave a tour and overview of the company's history.

The museum features two floors of exhibits and artifacts, focused on the early days of banking and express services.

The Wells Fargo stagecoach appears in hundreds of community parades and events each year.


Class members pose on the rooftop of the Wells Fargo Bank building in the Financial District.

Weaving a Multicultural Web for Tomorrow with Mary O'Hara-Devereaux, Ph.D.    

Mary O'Hara Devereaux, Ph.D., Founder & President, Global Foresight, gave an overview of California's demographics and a clear view into the future of our state with "California's People: Weaving a Multicultural Web for Tomorrow."

Future trends we might see include broad adoption of "net-speak" terms such as LOL; 3-D printing, personal memory chips for Alzheimer's patients, air-scrubbing trees, brain fitness, autonomous vehicles, and a basic income guarantee from governments.

O’Hara-Devereaux is a futurist, trend analyst and China expert who uses her cross-industry and cross-cultural expertise to deconstruct economic and social shifts. She advises leaders on what will be required to be a successful global business player.

Special Session: The Leading Edge of Gender Diversity    

Presenter/Panelist Kara Sprague, Partner, McKinsey & Company, spoke on institutional mindsets that can hold women back in their rise to positions of leadership. Her team conducted interviews with senior executives at 12 companies globally.

Forty million women since 1970 have joined the workforce, but women's earning level remains at 81% of men's. Women's corporate board representation is rising, now at 17% and there are few boards left that are exclusively composed of men. However, only 4.6% of CEOs are women.

A panel followed the presentation. Moderator was Kay Iwata, right, president, K. Iwata Associates, Inc. and Leadership California Executive Advisory Council member. Panelists were Cecily Joseph, (’08), left, Vice President, Corporate Responsibility & Chief Diversity Officer, Symantec Corporation and Leadership California Board of Directors.
The Legacy of Leadership Awards
See all the Awards photos HERE
Our Diversity Competencies
with Kay Iwata

Kay Iwata, President, K. Iwata Associates, Inc. and Leadership California Executive Advisory Council Member, led a presentation on "Our Diversity Competencies.

Iwata gave a quiz about facts and perceptions that addressed myths about racial groups.

Racism, sexism and ageism can play a part in workplace tensions.

The session included group discussion work.

Groups shared stories of how they have been perceived at work and their strategies to deal with others' assumptions about their race, gender, or age.

Feeling excluded can affect a team member's performance and can diminish that employee's value to the company, said Iwata.

Chinese Historical Society of America Museum Tour    

The class bused to Chinatown to visit the Chinese Historical Society of America Museum and Learning Center.

Founded in 1963, the museum is dedicated to documenting and preserving Chinese American history and to education.

The museum is the oldest and largest organization in the country dedicated to the study and presentation of the Chinese American experience.

The museum was designed byJulia Morgan, best known as the architect of Heast Castle. The building was originally a YWCA. She integrated Chinese motifs with the framework of western architecture.

The building continues with its original function – to serve the community in San Francisco’s Chinatown.


Class members view an exhibit of tiny fabric shoes and opium pipes.


Presenter was Charlie Chin, Artist-in-Residence & Docent, Chinese Historical Society of America Museum.

Chin provided a survey of historical events in China that led to immigration, gave a background in labor history in America, and told stories about the Chinese-American experience.

A folding cardboard carton played a role in Chinese American history. Originally used as a bucket for raw shellfish, it's now a ubiquitous carry-out food container.





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