LBCEI ceo forum webinar series

Strengthen Your Business to thrive in 2023 and beyond!

The LBCEI CEO Forum Webinar Series will be held from September 13 – October 25, 2023. Register for our newsletter below for more information on Small Business Support programs. The last day to register is September 12, 2023.

aBOUT THE pROGRAM

The Long Beach Center for Economic Inclusion partnered with The Business Experts to provide small business owners the opportunity for assistance and support. Through an interactive online learning experience business owners gained tools to strengthen their companies and increase visibility for their businesses.

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PROGRAM SUMMARY

The LBCEI CEO Forum Webinar Series gives small business owners an opportunity to learn new ways to look at business growth and the future of their restaurant, small business, organization, or company. The sessions are all online and are a combination of online learning, peer discussion sessions, opportunities to work with business experts, and at completion, the business owner will have a path forward as they lay their foundation to address business challenges, opportunities, and long term business growth.
 
The LBCEI CEO Forum Webinar Series will be held from September 13, 2023 to October 25, 2023. Upon completion of the program business
owners will be a part of the Long Beach Center of Economic Inclusion community and will get a certificate of completion of the program, along with access to additional business-building resources and networking opportunities!
 

benefits of the program

Learn key success factors to business resiliency

Get business tools to bring back to your business and team

Experience learning with fellow business owners

Create a vision for your best 2024 and beyond

Develop growth opportunity plans

2023 ceo webinar series:

September 13 - Foundations of Growth
led by Vivian Shimoyama

September 20 - Company Bottom Line
led by Max Ordonez

September 27 - Optimizing Marketing
led by Lisette Flores

October 4 - Power of social Media 1
led by Lori anding

October 11 - Power of Social Media 2 Led by Lori Anding

October 18 - Driving Sales & Getting Results
led by Vivian Shimoyama

the business experts

Vivian Shimoyama has directed initiatives for public, non-profit, and private sector organizations setting strategic vision, and managing organization growth which resulted in economic impact. She is a recognized expert on small businesses and has advocated for thousands of small business owners through local, state, national and international initiatives. Dedicated to growing small businesses she heads two ventures (Growth Small Business and Scale Smarter Partners) that accelerate business growth through guided tools that allow companies to thrive. She advises and advocates for small businesses in a range of industries with outcomes that lead to opening doors of opportunity for entrepreneurs, strategic positioning, and focus on building operations infrastructure necessary to support growth.

Most recently, Ms. Shimoyama was the Regional Executive Director of the Goldman Sachs 10,000 Small Businesses (10KSB) Initiative for Southern California. She built a regional team and worked with national organizations to create jobs and economic growth by providing entrepreneurs with a practical business and management education program, access to capital, and business advisory support services.

She is on the boards of the California Small Business Education Foundation, California Small Business Association, and Long Beach Center for Economic Inclusion, Long Beach Accelerator. She was recently appointed by Mayor Garcia to the Economic Development Commission, and served as the Chair Emeritus of the Pacific Gateway Workforce Investment Board, National Association of Women Business Owners, and NAWBO Education Foundation. She is an advisor to the University of Southern California Small Business Supplier Diversity Office.

As a national and international leader, she has served as an appointee to the National Women’s Business Council, an independent federal government advisory council that advises the President and U.S. Congress on issues important to women owned businesses. Ms. Shimoyama has served as an elected delegate to the White House Conference on Small Business; was a member of the U.S. delegation and facilitator for the landmark 10 Downing Street Economic Summit headed by the U.K. government; U.S. delegate to the Asia-Pacific (APEC) Women and the Economy Summit, bringing together private and public sector leaders for women’s economic empowerment.

Ms. Shimoyama has been honored by the National Association of Women Business Owners, and received the National Women In Business Advocate Award from the U.S. Small Business Administration (SBA). In 2020, she was selected by the New York Museum of Arts and Design as one of 45 artists that have made significant developments in art jewelry since the mid- century: 45 Stories in Jewelry: 1946 to Now features pieces and jewelry artists in the past eighty years that have broadened the scope and reach of art as a wearable medium. Shimoyama Studio is located in downtown Long Beach where her fused glass artwork is displayed along with her creation The Glass Ceiling Pin that has received national recognition for breaking invisible barriers … glass ceilings

M. Lissette Flores is a marketing communications practitioner with more than 20 years of experience specializing in Hispanic, multicultural and international public relations and marketing communications. In 2002, she founded estrella pr + marketing, where her clients have included the Orange County Fair, Symantec, La Opinion, Azteca America TV, Northwestern Mutual Bank, Goldman Sachs and Long Beach City College’s 10,000 Small Businesses Initiative. Lissette served as the president of the Hispanic Public Relations Association and received the Trevett Award from the Public Relations Society of America. She helps prepare students for successful careers in mass communications as a member of the Department of Journalism & Public Relations Advisory Board at California State University, Long Beach. She is the Chair of the Board for the Long Beach Public Library Foundation, is on the boards of WomenShelter of Long Beach and Long Beach Cancer League, and serves as a Commissioner on the Long Beach Human Relations Commission.

Lori Anding is the President/CEO of South Bay Social Media. She is known for developing and implementing social media campaigns that are authentic and connect with the client’s community and global audience in order to make a positive social ROI and impact.

She built and grew a translation business. And through her tenacity, she and her business partner got on the front page of the Los Angeles Times business section. After participating in the prestigious Goldman Sachs 10,000 Small Businesses Program she dove deep into social media and found her passion! Lori is insatiably curious and a lifelong learner. These traits help her company stay current in the inevitably changing social media industry.

Max A.Ordonez is an established entrepreneurial executive with diverse hands-on experience in strategic and financial management, accounting, operations and project management.  

Mr. Ordonez’s cumulative experience encompasses over 13 years advising entrepreneurs through the Small Business Development Center (SBDC).  As a SBDC business advisor, Mr. Ordonez has had an emphasis in two areas:  financing start-ups to more established small and medium-sized enterprises (SMEs) and procurement contracts with government and large corporations. 

Industry experience includes responsibility of strategic plan development, business development, client management, forecasting and operational/financial reporting for various clients in the insurance, construction, construction management , development/redevelopment, technology, software, and medical/medical device industries throughout Southern California. 

the business experts

Small business owners selected for this program will get unprecedented access to a cadre of business experts known for their success in assisting business owners to resolve problems, for positioning  businesses for short term and long term success, and in developing access to financial and key resources to manage and grow their businesses.
 
The Business Experts will utilize on-line direct interaction, ongoing communications, and candid advice as core components of the Small Business Resiliency CEO Forum.
 
Selected participants will work with The Business Experts throughout the program and then upon successful completion of the program will be assigned an expert that will advise and mentor for them for a period of six months.

Vivian Shimoyama has directed initiatives for public, non-profit, and private sector organizations setting strategic vision, and managing organization growth which resulted in economic impact. She is a recognized expert on small businesses and has advocated for thousands of small business owners through local, state, national and international initiatives. Dedicated to growing small businesses she heads two ventures (Growth Small Business and Scale Smarter Partners) that accelerate business growth through guided tools that allow companies to thrive. She advises and advocates for small businesses in a range of industries with outcomes that lead to opening doors of opportunity for entrepreneurs, strategic positioning, and focus on building operations infrastructure necessary to support growth.

Most recently, Ms. Shimoyama was the Regional Executive Director of the Goldman Sachs 10,000 Small Businesses (10KSB) Initiative for Southern California. She built a regional team and worked with national organizations to create jobs and economic growth by providing entrepreneurs with a practical business and management education program, access to capital, and business advisory support services.

She is on the boards of the California Small Business Education Foundation, California Small Business Association, and Long Beach Center for Economic Inclusion, Long Beach Accelerator. She was recently appointed by Mayor Garcia to the Economic Development Commission, and served as the Chair Emeritus of the Pacific Gateway Workforce Investment Board, National Association of Women Business Owners, and NAWBO Education Foundation. She is an advisor to the University of Southern California Small Business Supplier Diversity Office.

As a national and international leader, she has served as an appointee to the National Women’s Business Council, an independent federal government advisory council that advises the President and U.S. Congress on issues important to women owned businesses. Ms. Shimoyama has served as an elected delegate to the White House Conference on Small Business; was a member of the U.S. delegation and facilitator for the landmark 10 Downing Street Economic Summit headed by the U.K. government; U.S. delegate to the Asia-Pacific (APEC) Women and the Economy Summit, bringing together private and public sector leaders for women’s economic empowerment.

Ms. Shimoyama has been honored by the National Association of Women Business Owners, and received the National Women In Business Advocate Award from the U.S. Small Business Administration (SBA). In 2020, she was selected by the New York Museum of Arts and Design as one of 45 artists that have made significant developments in art jewelry since the mid- century: 45 Stories in Jewelry: 1946 to Now features pieces and jewelry artists in the past eighty years that have broadened the scope and reach of art as a wearable medium. Shimoyama Studio is located in downtown Long Beach where her fused glass artwork is displayed along with her creation The Glass Ceiling Pin that has received national recognition for breaking invisible barriers … glass ceilings

Clifton L. Johnson is a Founder & Managing Partner with Burch Capital Partners. Prior to joining Burch, Johnson was employed at Union Bank in Wealth Management as a Vice President and Senior Account Relationship Manager. Johnson has been employed in the banking and financial services industry for 47 years. His focus with Burch is on deal sourcing, execution and structuring.

Johnson is an Advisory Member of the Investment Committee for the California Community Foundation and an Advisory Board Member of the Foundation’s Centinela Fund. He served as a board member and Treasurer for the Magic Johnson Foundation.

Throughout his banking career, Johnson was extraordinarily active and committed to a number of civic and community organizations. Appointed as a Public Member of The California State Board of Accountancy, Johnson was the first African American to serve on the Board in its 103 year history. He is a past Chairman and Board Member of the Torrance Area Chamber of Commerce, a past board member of the Los Angeles Biomedical Research Institute at Harbor-UCLA Medical Center, a past President and board member of the Roy W. Robert II Watts/Willowbrook Boys and Girls Club, and a past President and founding member of the Los Angeles Urban Financial Services Coalition, formerly the Los Angeles Urban Bankers Association. He is the recipient of numerous awards to include the Los Angeles Urban League’s 2002 Community Responsibility Award.

Johnson received a Bachelor of Business Administration degree in Banking and Finance from the University of North Texas at Denton and attended graduate school at Pepperdine University.

Phyllis Evans Venable is the CEO of Silhouette Consulting Group, a San Pedro, California based consulting firm specializing in business development and non-profit capacity-building. She established Silhouette Consulting in 2005 after serving 18 years with the City of Long Beach, California as Business Development Manager.

With her 33-year career in the public sector, Venable held various city and state management positions, including Public Information Director for the State of Kansas Energy Office; Community Development Administrator for the cities of Torrance, California and Leavenworth, Kansas, and Legislative Analyst to the City Manager of Kansas City, Missouri. A graduate of University of Kansas (KU), she attended KU Law School and qualifies as an Economic Development Finance Professional (EDFP), certified through the National Development Council.

During 2010-13, Venable managed a Long Beach project under the African Urban Poverty Alleviation Program, funded by the Bill & Malinda Gates Foundation. The Long Beach-Mombasa (Kenya) Sister Cities Association competed successfully for the project grant – one of only 16 awarded that year to develop and implement health, sanitation and water improvements benefitting the urban poor residing in African coastal communities. As project manager, Venable established a local committee in Mombasa and developed projects that provided medical equipment and supplies to 19 public health clinics, replaced a destroyed sole paramedic unit, and delivered portable water purification plants for increased access to clean drinking water. Through her efforts, the original grant was leveraged 20 to 1.

Venable has received numerous awards and honors including an honor on the 2019 “Wall of Excellence” of Forgotten Images, Inc.; the 2011 International Champion Award from Harbor Area Links, Inc; 2002 “Business Associate of the Year” from the South Bay American Business Women’s Association; and a listing in the 2000 Edition of the National Reference Institute’s Who’s Who of Women Executives. She received the ‘Friend of the Dream” award from the Long Beach Central Area Association in 1998 honoring her dedication to the legacy of Dr. Martin Luther King, Jr. She was named an Outstanding Young Woman of America in 1994 by the National Reference Foundation, and in 1993, received the prestigious Savvy Award from the City-County Communications & Marketing Association (3CMA) for creative marketing and communications in local government.

Venable is active in community and civic affairs, serving on Community Advisory Boards of Long Beach Freedom School and Los Angeles County Natural History Museum; Executive Boards of the Tom Bradley Legacy Foundation, Angels Gate Cultural Center and Delta Sigma Theta Sorority, Rolling Hills/Palos Verdes Alumnae Chapter. She currently serves as President & CEO of Sister Cities of Long Beach, Inc., a nonprofit organization that oversees the eight (8) global partnerships of the City of Long Beach, CA.

Philip Borden, Ph.D. trained in history, mathematics, and political theory in the U.S. and at Oxford, Borden joined the full-time faculty at UCLA in 1968. He left academic life in 1974 to found or co-found high technology ventures in artificial intelligence applied to learning theory and advanced manufacturing, electronic and electro-optical design, and forensic image processing. His companies were cited for their excellence in IBM’s Baldridge award, in Business Week and Entrepreneur, and on NBC, CBS, and other national media.

Borden entered the non-profit world in 1993 to head Asian American Economic Development Enterprises. In 1995 he became the first male CEO of a major woman’s organization, Woman’s Enterprise Development Corporation. By 2007 he had helped found/establish five city and county wide business and civic organizations, an L.A. City/County transportation consortium, and Active Capital, a national matching service for fast growth entrepreneurs and investors under a special SEC exemption.

Throughout his career, Borden has consulted in museum/exhibit design, arts financing, technology, and the creation of “innovation communities”. He has trained entrepreneurs in Russia, advised a U.N. agency in Brazil and technology zone officers in China, and keynoted an international management conference in Japan. He has presented to over 100 popular and professional association papers on management and technology topics. Some of his work has been translated into Japanese, Arabic, and Kurdish.

In four trips to Iraq for the Department of State (2006-7), Borden consulted on small business development. He wrote studies of national and provincial economic development, handbooks for business start-up and business support centers, and a guide for evaluating entrepreneurial training programs. His book, Shaku Maku: On the Ground in Occupied Iraq (2008), was named as one of the five essential works on Iraq by a leading war correspondent. His work also was instrumental in forming a business development center in Nigeria.

In 2007, he co-founded Essergy Consulting, bringing together top-flight consultants to advise socially and environmentally responsible small companies, and to conduct economic development studies for universities plus state, regional and local governments. He has taught nonprofit management at the MBA level and counseled minority, woman owned, and nonprofit ventures. Borden retired in 2018, but continues informal small business advising and some board activities. He still actively publishes, including a recent article on the impact of artificial intelligence on small business development and one in press on the history of presidential management of epidemics.

A former senior executive in two Fortune 100 Corporations, Dr. Hawkins’ business background includes early-in-career tenure at the Rand Corporation Think Tank as a Project Analyst and as the first woman of color to be designated as a Rand Project Manager. Notably, a significant early-in-career highlight was her Presidential appointment as a White House Fellow. She served as Special Assistant to Cabinet Secretary Cecil Andrus, Secretary of the Department of Interior. Dr. Hawkins was assigned significant special projects by the Under Secretary James A. Joseph. Her operational responsibilities included implementation of technology systems supporting bilateral and multilateral trade agreements.

Dr. Hawkins spent the last several decades as a small business entrepreneur. Through 2006 she headed a business process re-engineering and supply chain firm that developed and implemented proprietary software (intellectual property) as a best-of-breed supply chain component of ERP systems. Dr. Hawkins has served as a Director on the Boards of service and technology companies at various stages of growth. She has also served as a C level officer in turnaround and restructuring situations.

Currently Managing Partner of One Source Fiduciary Solutions, a Professional Fiduciary services firm, Dr. Hawkins provides expert witness testimony and litigation support in the areas of: Business Disputes, Breach of Fiduciary Duty, Fiduciary Bad Conduct, Trusts, Estates and Conservator Mismanagement, Partnership Dissolution, and Corporate Governance.

With a long history of community and professional activism, Dr. Hawkins has provided testimony before legislative and regulatory entities. She has served on numerous Boards that include Protestant Community Services, the Brotherhood Crusade, United Way (Los Angles & Pittsburg), Northeast Midwest Institute (policy arm of the Northeast Midwest Congressional Coalition), Indiana State Commission for the Humanities, CORO [Leadership] Foundation, Forensic Expert Witness Association (National & Greater Los Angeles), So California Gas Company’s Multi-Cultural Issues Panel, California Special Commission on Economic and Job Development [CEO’s of California headquartered Corporations], and the California African American Political and Economic Institute. Dr. Hawkins was member of the Executive Committee of the Board of Directors, L.A. County Sheriff’s Youth Foundation where she chaired the Audit Committee of the Board.

Dr. Hawkins received a Masters and PhD from the University of Southern California and her Bachelors and Masters from the University of California at Los Angeles. Dr. Hawkins is a California Licensed Professional Fiduciary (CLPF).

Carl Kemp

Environmental Health Public Affairs Manager,
LA County Department of Public Health

Carl Kemp is currently the Environmental Health Public Affairs Manager with Los Angeles County Department of Public Health and has more than 20 years of experience in communications and public affairs. Prior to joining Public Health, Carl managed his own government affairs and public relations practice with a wide range of clients from international shipping to major non-profits. He also created the Office of Government Affairs and Communication in the City of Long Beach, and went on to create the Office of Government Affairs and Community Relations at the Port of Long Beach.

Kemp has a long history of community involvement in the Long Beach area, including earning a B.A. and MPA from California State University, Long Beach, where he served two terms as student body present. He also has earned a certificate in Executive Leadership from the Harvard University School of Government. He has developed messaging around many major initiatives from local to federal government, including the Green Port Policy at the Port of Long Beach. Over the years, Carl has served on many boards and has been blessed to be involved in numerous initiatives to improve the community and contribute to the people within it.

Carl’s proudest accomplishment is being a father.

VIVIAN SHIMOYAMA

President
Growth Small Business, LLC

Vivian Shimoyama has directed initiatives for public, non-profit, and private sector organizations setting strategic vision, and managing organization growth which resulted in economic impact. She is a recognized expert on small businesses and has advocated for thousands of small business owners through local, state, national and international initiatives. Dedicated to growing small businesses she heads two ventures — Growth Small Business, LLC and is the Chief Operating Officer of Scale Smarter Partners, these firms accelerate business growth through guided tools that allow companies to thrive. She advises and advocates for small businesses in a range of industries with outcomes that lead to opening doors of opportunity for entrepreneurs, strategic positioning, and focus on building operations infrastructure necessary to support growth. 

Most recently, Ms. Shimoyama was the Regional Executive Director of the Goldman Sachs 10,000 Small Businesses (10KSB) Initiative for Southern California. She built a regional team and worked with national organizations to create jobs and economic growth by providing entrepreneurs with a practical business and management education program, access to capital, and business advisory support services.

She is the Chair Emeritus of the Pacific Gateway Workforce Investment Board, National Association of Women Business Owners, and NAWBO Education Foundation, and advisor to the California Small Business Education Foundation, and University of Southern California Small Business Supplier Diversity Office. 

As a national and international leader, she has served as an appointee to the National Women’s Business Council, an independent federal government advisory council that advises the President and U.S. Congress on issues important to women owned businesses. Ms. Shimoyama has served as an elected delegate to the White House Conference on Small Business; was a member of the U.S. delegation and facilitator for the landmark 10 Downing Street Economic Summit headed by the U.K. government; U.S. delegate to the Asia-Pacific (APEC) Women and the Economy Summit, bringing together private and public sector leaders for women’s economic empowerment.  

Ms. Shimoyama has been honored by the National Association of Women Business Owners, and received the National Women In Business Advocate Award from the U.S. Small Business Administration (SBA). In 2020, she was selected by the New York Museum of Arts and Design as one of 45 artists that have made significant developments in art jewelry since the mid- century: 45 Stories in Jewelry: 1946 to Now features pieces and jewelry artists in the past eighty years that have broadened the scope and reach of art as a wearable medium. Shimoyama Studio is located in downtown Long Beach where her fused glass artwork is displayed along with her creation The Glass Ceiling Pin that has received national recognition for breaking invisible barriers … glass ceilings.

REV. WAYNE CHANEY

Pastor- Antioch Church, LB

Wayne Chaney personifies the contemporary spiritual leader. He uniquely bridges people from different generations, cultures, and demographics through his relevant teaching and architecture of spirited worship atmospheres. His rich family heritage of clergyman fuels his genuine love for people. He stewards a five-decade legacy left by his grandfather, Joe Chaney, Jr. as he pastors Antioch Church of Long Beach. Wayne’s determination to shift culture is permeated throughout his ministry expression, oratory and brand tentacles.

Wayne has never been satisfied with status quo so whether it is a national television show, radio show, church congregation, regional festival, or by feeding thousands of people every month, he is destined to make a difference. Chaney is the visionary of the Long Beach Gospel Fest, the city’s premier gospel event held on the beautiful shores of downtown Long Beach. This yearly gathering brings politicians, business owners, gospel singers, and over 25,000 people together for inspiration, worship and music. “Beyond the gospel music, we are witnessing the addition of something new and wonderful to Long Beach,” he said to the Los Angeles Times.

He is strongly engaged civically as the former President of the California National African American Network, SBC, Board Member of the National African American Network, and on the Executive Board of the California Southern Baptist Convention. Pastor Chaney serves on the Executive Board of Global Tribe International, whose mission is to rescue those in physical and spiritual poverty, reach communities with the gospel and recruit and empower young leaders. He is also the president emeritus of the Long Beach Ministers Alliance.

Pastor Chaney has added published author to his expanding repertoire as his novel Your Miraculous Potential: Maximizing God’s Creativity, Power and Direction is now available at retailers everywhere.

DR. JUAN BENITEZ

Director, CSULB Center For Civic Engagement

Dr. Juan M. Benitez is a father, educator, and community leader dedicated to Long Beach. He serves as the Executive Director for the Center for Community Engagement (CCE) and as an Associate Professor of History at California State University, Long Beach (CSULB).

With over 20 years of experience in higher education, Juan heads university-wide community engagement projects, programs, activities, and initiatives. He has helped raise close to $3 million in funding for projects in the region, working with over 100 nonprofit organizations and community groups as well as thousands of students and community members.

Through his work with the CCE, Juan helped to implement The California Endowment’s Building Healthy Communities initiative in Long Beach, a 10-year effort to improve neighborhood conditions that contribute to good health. Juan also worked with AmeriCorps and community groups to create a collaborative vision to address youth development, parent engagement, equity and opportunity gaps, and school discipline issues in Long Beach schools.

Juan is also the proud son of hard-working immigrants from Mexico who came to the United States to pursue a better life for their family and achieve the American Dream.

Juan was elected to the Long Beach Unified School District Board, Third District, in June 2018.

Joey King

Program Manager,
LBCEI

Joey King is a humanitarian and community leader with a passion for making a positive impact. Born in St. Thomas, USVI, and raised in Barbados, Joey moved to California in 1985 and joined the Navy as a Nuclear Engineer. After serving his country, he settled in the Long Beach area in 2000 and began raising his four children, two boys, and two girls, who are the center of his world. 

In 2020, Joey began his non-profit work, which was fueled by the pandemic. He has since hosted a number of Digital inclusion events, Covid vaccine events, street safety events, Back to School Events, Holiday give away events, home ownership events, cash for college events, and more. Joey has become known as the “Food Mafia of Long Beach” for his exceptional efforts in providing food for over 3 million meals in 2022 alone. His dedication to serving his community has made him a beloved figure in Long Beach, and his work continues to make a significant impact on the lives of those around him.

DARICK J. SIMPSON

Executive Director - Miller Foundation​

Darick J. Simpson, currently serves as the president and CEO of the Earl B. and Loraine H. Miller Foundation — one of the largest philanthropic foundations in the city. He formerly served as the executive director of Long Beach Community Action Partnership.

Simpson, who holds a bachelor’s degree in Communications from the University of Alabama and a master’s in organizational management from the University of Phoenix, led LBCAP for the last 13 years. The nonprofit assists youth and families to reach self-sustainability.

Under Simpson’s direction, LBCAP became Long Beach’s public access television broadcast outlet and started a training program for youth in the performing arts and broadcast journalism. He grew LBCAP from a staff of 24 with a $1.3 million budget to an agency with a $10 million budget and 80 staff members.

A resident of Long Beach, Darick is a recognized leader in the community. Additionally, Mr. Simpson has served on various national, state, and regional boards including the PBS SoCal Advisory Board and the Los Angeles County Department of Public Social Services (DPSS) Commission.

Sharon Diggs-Jackson

Program Director, Elite Skills Development​

Sharon Jackson’s professional career includes 12 years with IBM where she served as an auditor and administrative branch manager.  Her 20-year career with the City of Long Beach included serving as an Analyst in the Long Beach Police Department’s Narcotics and Crime Analysis Divisions and Coordinator of the Neighborhood Nuisance Abatement Program. For the final 10 years of her career she was the city’s Airport Public Affairs Officer.

Following her retirement in 2009, Sharon, and her husband David, began a journey to discover and connect with their family roots that landed them in Selma, AL, where they purchased and renovated a historic home in Downtown Selma.  The home has been used as a center for racial healing and social action and a learning center for students studying the Civil War, the Civil Rights and Voting Rights Movement.

A student of history, Sharon is an trained genealogist and author of, Images of America:SELMA. Published in November 2014, the book has been very well received and is now in its second printing. 

Currently, Sharon serves as the Program Officer for Elite Skills Development, a non-profit organization that provides services to create pathways to self-sustainability for at-risk and under-resourced youth and young adults.

Sharon is a member of the Long Beach City College Citizen Oversight Committee, a board member of the Long Beach African American Cultural Center, the Executive Committee of the Selma Annual Bridge Crossing Jubilee and a member of Delta Sigma Theta Sorority, Inc-Long Beach Alumnae Chapter and The Links, Inc.

CDC WORKING GROUP

Antioch Church | Carl Kemp

Antioch LB | Wayne Chaney, Jr.

City of Long Beach, Economic Development | John Keisler

City of Long Beach, Economic Development | Rebecca Kauma

City of Long Beach, Health Dept. | Katie Balderas 

City of Long Beach, Health Dept. | Kelly Colopy

Council District 9 | Rex Richardson

Council District 9, City of Long Beach | Alanah Grant

CSULB | Juan Benitez

CSULB Institute for Innovation and Entrepreneurship | Wade Martin

Elite Skills Development | Sharon Diggs-Jackson

Growth Small Business, LLC | Vivian Shimoyama

Habitat for Humanity | Dinesa Thomas-Whitman

LA County | Herlinda Chico

LA LISC | Tunua Thrash-NtukLandspire Group | Treana Allen

LB Economic Development Commission | Jessica Schumer

LB Forward | Petit Christine

LB Opera | Derrell Acon

LBCAP | Darick Simpson

LBCAP | Marisa Semense

LBUSD | Kim Johnson

LINC Housing | Suny Lay Chang

Our Essence Beauty Supply | Deidre Norville

Pacific6 | Brandon Dowling

PGWIN | Nick Schultz

PGWIN Board | Weston LaBar

POLB | Bonnie Lowenthal

Pride Real Estate Professional Association | Jacqueline Case

PV Jobs | Erik Miller

Ronnie’s House | Shirin Senegal

SHS Connections | Shawna Stevens

SoCal Grantmakers | Seyron Foo

United Cambodian Community, Midtown BID | Susana Sngiem,

Uptown BID | Doris Felix

Uptown BID | Joni Ricks-Odie

Uptown BID | Tom Carpenter

Urban Agriculture Council | Rod Dodd

USC Small Business Diversity Office | Rhonda Thornton

Villages at Cabrillo | Rene Castro

Wells Fargo | Linda Nguyen

Facilitators: 

Elite Skills Development | Sharon Diggs-Jackson 

Office of Councilmember Rex Richardson | Alanah Grant