The Oakland Workforce Development Roundtable held its second roundtable meeting last week at the Post News Group office in Oakland. This group was put together in response to the disproportionately low participation of minorities in the construction and development industry. Initial founders of the group were Danny Haber, Paul Cobb and Uche Uwahemu.
In addition to Danny Haber, Owow Development; Paul Cobb, Post publisher; Maurice Arnold, Robert Arnold & Co.; Ronnie Turner, Turner Development Resource Group; Zeenat Patrawala, Google; Maya Theuer, LGB Real Estate Management; Dr. Jowel Laguerre, Peralta Colleges District; Zachary Murray, Oakland Land Trust; Brian Clark, HDP Health; Mirwais Ahmed American Renewable, and Robert Cohen, Building Opportunity for Self-Sufficiency. The group added Dino Adelfio, New Way Homes; Zali Lorincz, ZLC Corporations and Ofer Zur, OZ tech to the mix of representatives.
After an invigorating solution-based discussion, the group agreed on a 25-person pilot construction management program with the Peralta College. The group will recruit, pay, mentor and guarantee a job for every graduate from the pilot program. The pilot program will be under the auspices of the Peralta Colleges Foundation. The group also agreed to engage more with larger employers to help determine specific needs.
The group is inviting interested contractors and developers to attend the next meeting in November.