Summit on Children and Youth - Building the Next Generation Workforce


Richmond Community Foundation (RCF) is excited to partner with the West Contra Costa Unified School District to present this year's Summit on Children and Youth, Building the Next Generation Workforce on May 17th from 10 AM to 8 PM. New this year, the event will feature a career fair for students and teachers, linking them directly to business and education leaders. 

The transition of our communities from economies focused on manufacturing to economies in Science, Technology, Engineering and Math (STEM) fields has changed how we build our next generation workforce.  The benefits of this changing economy have not been evenly distributed across labor markets and the disparity has affected urban, minority communities disproportionately. 

The Summit includes inspiring speakers and presentations from programs throughout the Bay Area, as well as roundtable discussions to tackle challenges and explore opportunities.  In addition to presenting engaging workforce programs that actively train and develop young people for careers, the Summit explores academic, vocational, training and mentoring programs targeting underserved youth,and community college students.

The summit opens at 10:00am on May 17, with a welcome by Assemblymember Tony Thurmond, a champion for job training and workforce development programs in our region. Amit Patel, General Manager for Courtyard Marriott, will introduce the Opening Speaker, Joseph Fortuno, a Digital Media Management student at Cogswell Polytechnical College in San Jose who will provide an inspirational overview of his journey to success. Andrea Bailey from Chevron will introduce the Keynote Speaker, Marc Philpart, the director of Boys and Men of Color initiatives at PolicyLink. In this role, he co-directs the Institute for Black Male Achievement—a national membership network working to improve outcomes for black men and boys—and is the principal coordinator for the Alliance for Boys and Men of Color—a statewide network of change agents working towards policy and systems change on behalf of boys and men of color. Marc will provide an overview of the challenges and opportunities to preparing underserved youth for future careers.

This will be followed by two concurrent sessions. The first will provide an overview of the landscape of linked learning in Oakland, and will feature Preston Thomas, Executive Director for College and Career Readiness for Oakland Unified School District (OUSD), Bernard McCune, Deputy Chief for Post-Secondary Readiness at OUSD, and David Kakishiba, Executive Director for the East Bay Asian Youth Center as well as the author for Measure N in 2014, which earmarked tax revenue for adding school programs designed to prepare students for colleges and real-world jobs and reduced dropout rates.  Terri Waller, District Director for Senator Loni Hancock and a champion for workbased learning programs in West Contra Costa County, will moderate the panel.

The other session will focus on pathways to careers, both academic and vocational, and will feature Marsha Jaeger, Assistant Vice Chancellor for Educational Partnerships, Center for Educational Partnerships at UC Berkeley, Mojdeh Mehdizadeh, President of Contra Costa College, Melinda Hall, Executive Director, Hayward Promise Neighborhood, Cal State East Bay, and Jennifer Stetson, Steam Fitter, U.A. Local 342. Julie Mathern, FocalPoint Business Coaching, a senior business professional with over 25 years of marketing, strategic and organizational management experience in life sciences and education, will moderate the panel.

All attendees will also enjoy lunch and dinner provided by local restaurants and caterers in West Contra Costa County including Up and Under, Salute E Vita Ristorante, Sa Wad Dee Thai Restaurant and others, plus the opportunity to visit over thirty booths as part of the resource village who provide resources and opportunities to high school and college-aged youth.

For more information about the Summit program, or to register visit: http:/

The Northern California Summit on Children and Youth is convened annually by the Richmond Community Foundation.  The Richmond Community Foundation (RCF) harnesses the power of philanthropy to build healthy, sustainable communities throughout Richmond and Contra Costa County. RCF provides the leadership to effectively engage those who wish to create positive change, and leverages the assets necessary to make this change possible.


WHAT:           Leaders from Northern California Convene in Richmond to discuss challenges

                        and solutions to building the next generation workforce

WHEN:           Tuesday, May 17, 10 am to 8 pm

WHERE:         Craneway Pavilion, 1414 Harbour Way, Richmond, CA

WHO:             Assemblymember Tony Thurmond, District 15

James Becker, President and CEO, Richmond Community Foundation

Amit Patel, Courtyard Marriott

Joseph Fortuno, Gladeo

Andrea Bailey, Chevron

Marc Philpart, PolicyLink

David Kakishiba, Executive Director, East Bay Asian Youth Center

Bernard McCune, Deputy Chief, Post-Secondary Readiness, Oakland Unified School District

Preston Thomas, High School Network Superintendent, Oakland Unified School District

Terri Waller, District Director, Senator Loni Hancock

Marsha Jaeger, Assistant Vice Chancellor, University of California, Berkeley

Mojdeh Mehdizadeh, President, Contra Costa College

Melinda Hall, Executive Director, Hayward Promise Neighborhood,Cal State East Bay

Jennifer Stetson, Steam Fitter, U.A. Local 342

Julie Mathern, FocalPoint Business Coaching

Devin Lars,, CEO, entrepreneur

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