How can California remain economically competitive with the eager, talented and educated middle classes emerging in China, India and elsewhere? How can the California Dream be prevented from turning into a California Nightmare? Gold drove the first economic boom, and information technology fostered California's most recent revolution of jobs and growth. What will be next?
As the world becomes flat, globalization presents challenges. Will Californians innovate their way out? Prominent Californians (including a world-renowned economist, urban analyst and business innovators) discuss the issues challenging the state's business environment and provide insight into what must be done to ensure economic success.
Robert M. Hertzberg was twice unanimously elected Speaker of the California State Assembly (2000 – 2002). He now is co-founder of G24 Innovations based in Cardiff, Wales which manufactures a new type of lightweight and flexible solar cell that generates power in low, ambient and even indoor conditions. He is also an equity partner at Mayer Brown LLP, one of the world's largest international law firms.
His work with G24i, and as co-founder of Renewable Capital, has made him an active entrepreneur and leader in global policy on renewable energy. The Guardian (UK) named him as one of the "50 People Who Could Save the Planet" and his company won the World Bank's Award for Lighting Africa, for a project in Rwanda. CNBC European Business recognized G24i as one of its TOP 100 Low-Carbon Pioneers. Mr. Hertzberg has appeared on CBS Evening News, CNN, BBC, Nightline, and in articles in The Economist, and Fortune Small Business. A previous solar company in Los Angeles won the 2005 Wall Street Journal Innovation of the Year Award in the field of energy.
Robert N. Klein's commitment to advancing medical research originated in his younger son Jordan's diagnosis with Juvenile Diabetes in 2001. In addition, his mother was diagnosed with Alzheimer's two years earlier. In 2002, Klein was a principal negotiator, as a part of a Juvenile Diabetes Research Foundation patient advocate team that worked successfully to pass a $1.5 billion mandatory federal funding bill for an additional five years of Type 1 and Type 2 diabetes supplemental National Institutes of Health research funding.
In 2003, Klein served as the author and Chairman of California's Proposition 71, the $6 billion "California Stem Cell Research and Cures" ballot initiative. Currently he serves as the Chairman of the Governing Board of the California Institute of Regenerative Medicine established by Proposition 71 to manage the peer review, standards, and grant process for the $3 billion in stem cell research funding authorized by the proposed Initiative.
Award-winning broadcast journalist Sydnie Kohara brings years of experience to her position as co-anchor of the CBS 5 Eyewitness News Early Edition, seen weekday mornings from 5-7am.
Kohara has lived all over the world she covers. She served as CNBC's international correspondent based out of NBC's London bureau, reporting on overseas financial markets. From Tokyo and Hong Kong to Frankfurt, Paris and London, Kohara provided the latest market news and information on Asian and European corporations for CNBC's "Today's Business", "Squawk Box" and "Market Watch". She also filed daily reports for NBC's "Early Today" and appeared on MSNBC, as well as WNBC in New York City and other NBC affiliates nationwide.
Nancy Pfund is a Managing Partner of DBL Investors. DBL Investors is a venture capital firm whose goal is to combine top-tier financial returns with meaningful social, economic and environmental returns in the regions in which it invests. Ms. Pfund currently sponsors or sits on the board of directors of a number of private companies, including Tesla Motors, Pandora Media, BrightSource Energy, Solar City and Solaria.
Previously, Ms. Pfund was a Managing Director at JPMorgan. Ms. Pfund joined JPMorgan (then Hambrecht & Quist) in 1984 as a securities analyst and later joined its venture capital department as principal and then Managing Director. Ms. Pfund also built and directed H&Q's external affairs and philanthropic programs from 1996 to 2001. Prior to joining JPMorgan, Ms. Pfund worked at Intel Corporation, Stanford University, the State of California, and the Sierra Club. In 1988, Ms. Pfund was appointed as a charter member of the National Advisory Council for Environmental Policy and Technology.
In 1999, Ms. Pfund was appointed by President Clinton to serve on the Congressional Web-Based Education Commission. Ms. Pfund is a member of the board of directors of the California Clean Energy Fund (CalCEF), a not-for-profit fund that invests in companies pursuing alternatives to a fossil-fuel dominated economy, and is a founding officer and director of ABC2, a foundation aimed at accelerating a cure for brain cancer. She is a member of the Advisory Board of the UC Davis Center for Energy Efficiency and has been appointed as a member of CPUC Commissioner Timothy Simons’ New Directions Program for the Future of California Utilities.
Ms. Pfund received her BA and MA in anthropology from Stanford University, and her MBA from the Yale School of Management.
Paul Saffo is a forecaster with over two decades experience exploring the dynamics of large-scale, long-term change. He is Managing Director of Foresight at Discern Analytics, teaches at Stanford University and is a researcher through mediaX at Stanford University. Saffo serves on a variety of not-for-profit boards including the Long Now Foundation, and the Bay Area Council Economic Institute. Saffo’s essays have appeared in a wide range of publications including The Harvard Business Review, Fortune, Wired, The Los Angeles Times, Newsweek, The New York Times, and the Washington Post. Saffo holds degrees from Harvard College, Cambridge University and Stanford University.
Laura D'Andrea Tyson
Laura D'Andrea Tyson is the S.K. and Angela Chan Professor of Global Management at the Haas School of Business at the University of California Berkeley. She served as dean of London Business School from 2002 to 2006, and as dean of the Haas School of Business, University of California at Berkeley from 1998 to 2001.
Russell Yarrow is General Manager for California Corporate Affairs at Chevron Corporation. He is responsible for external relations with a variety of stakeholders in Chevron's home state. Prior to joining Chevron in 2004, Mr. Yarrow was Senior Vice President of Global Corporate Relations at Visa International for five years. Prior to that, Mr. Yarrow managed the Corporate Practice in Ketchum's San Francisco office. He began his corporate public relations career at Bank of America.
Mr. Yarrow is an award-winning former journalist who worked in a variety of editorial positions at several San Francisco Bay Area newspapers between 1976 and 1988. He majored in journalism at San Diego State University and is a fellow of the San Francisco Academy, a senior-level public relations seminar. He has been a guest lecturer at a variety of professional functions and has served in senior positions at several nonprofit organizations in the Bay Area.