Council of Business Sponsors

In 2017, CVCF formed its Council of Business Sponsors, a cohort of corporate philanthropic partners and thought leaders tasked with providing insight, strategic connections, and innovative solutions to help advance CVCF’s work on systemic challenges impacting the region.

Working together with the board and staff of CVCF, Council members activate their networks, meet with community partners to learn about the challenges they face, and advise CVCF on how to establish equitable, long-term solutions to lift up our community, particularly in the areas of job creation, small business development, education, and workforce development, and increasing affordable housing in the Central San Joaquin Valley.

The CVCF Council of Business Sponsors is an important connection point between the Central San Joaquin Valley and state economic development officials, with Governor Newsom’s chief economic and business advisor, Lenny Mendonca, CA FWD CEO Micah Weinberg and the chair of the Governor’s Entrepreneurship Task Force, Dilawar Syed, serving as ad hoc members of the Council.

The members of the Council of Business Sponsors serve as critical partners in the strategic alignment of business, philanthropy, community, civic, and education leaders around job creation and workforce development initiatives. Membership funds supports the activities of the Council of Business Sponsors, as well as CVCF’s operations staff support, research, and project management related to this initiative.

For more information on how to become a member of the Council of Business Sponsors contact CVCF’s Director of External Affairs, Sarah Moffat, at sarah@centralvalleycf.org.

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Council of Business Sponsors

In 2017, CVCF formed its Council of Business Sponsors, a cohort of corporate philanthropic partners and thought leaders tasked with providing insight, strategic connections, and innovative solutions to help advance CVCF’s work on systemic challenges impacting the region.

Working together with the board and staff of CVCF, Council members activate their networks, meet with community partners to learn about the challenges they face, and advise CVCF on how to establish equitable, long-term solutions to lift up our community, particularly in the areas of job creation, small business development, education, and workforce development, and increasing affordable housing in the Central San Joaquin Valley.

The CVCF Council of Business Sponsors is an important connection point between the Central San Joaquin Valley and state economic development officials, with Governor Newsom’s former chief economic and business advisor, Lenny Mendonca, CA FWD CEO Micah Weinberg and the chair of the Governor’s Entrepreneurship Task Force, Dilawar Syed, serving as ad hoc members of the Council.

The members of the Council of Business Sponsors serve as critical partners in the strategic alignment of business, philanthropy, community, civic, and education leaders around job creation and workforce development initiatives. Membership funds supports the activities of the Council of Business Sponsors, as well as CVCF’s operations staff support, research, and project management related to this initiative.

For more information on how to become a member of the Council of Business Sponsors contact CVCF’s Director of External Affairs, Sarah Moffat, at sarah@centralvalleycf.org.

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Next Meeting

Date: Friday, March 26, 2021

Time: 12:00 p.m. to 1:30 p.m.

Speakers

  • Partnering with the U.S. Small Business Administration (Pending Approval) – Dilawar Syed, CEO Lumiata, Chair of the California Entrepreneurship Task Force, and Biden Administration Nominee
  • Betting Big on Small Business Owned by Women and People of Color – Tara Lynn Gray, CEO of the Fresno Metro Black Chamber of Commerce
  • Healthy Harvest/Ag Worker Vaccinations – Hannah Johnson McAbee, Central Valley Community Foundation; and Ian LeMay, CA Fresh Fruit Association

Click here to see the full agenda.

Next Meeting

Date: Friday, March 26, 2021

Time: 12:00 p.m. to 1:30 p.m.

Speakers

  • Partnering with the U.S. Small Business Administration (Pending Approval) – Dilawar Syed, CEO Lumiata, Chair of the California Entrepreneurship Task Force, and Biden Administration Nominee
  • Betting Big on Small Business Owned by Women and People of Color – Tara Lynn Gray, CEO of the Fresno Metro Black Chamber of Commerce
  • Healthy Harvest/Ag Worker Vaccinations – Hannah Johnson McAbee, Central Valley Community Foundation; and Ian LeMay, CA Fresh Fruit Association

Click here to see the full agenda.

Ad Hoc Members

State

Lenny Mendonca
Former Chief Economic & Business Advisor for Governor Newsom

Micah Weinberg
Chief Executive Officer of Califonia Forward

Dilawar Syed
Chief Executive Officer of Lumiata/ Chair of the California Entrepreneurship Task Force

Tara Lynn Gray
Director of the California Office of Small Business Advocate

CVCF Board Participants

Rod Thornton, Chair

Craig Fourchy

Jolene Telles

Jim Maxwell

Brandon Esraelian

Regional

David Bacci
Regional Vice President of the Hospital Council of Northern & Central California

Kaya Heron
Chief Executive Officer of the Fresno Metro Black Chamber of Commerce

Cori Lucero
Merced Regional Director, Central Valley Opportunity Fund at CVCF

Tommy Esqueda
City Manager, City of Fresno

Will Oliver
Director of Business Services at the Fresno County Economic Development Corporation

Ian LeMay
Chief Executive Officer at California Fresh Fruit Association

Leticia Corona
Central California Regional Lead Advisor, Office of Small Business Advocate

Laura Seaman
Chief Executive Officer, League of California Community Foundations

Members