Prior to joining the Eat.Play.Learn Foundation José served as the Director of Equity and Strategic Partnerships under Oakland Mayor Libby Schaaf. In this role, José served as senior advisor to the Mayor, with the responsibility of creating, coordinating, and facilitating public/private/ philanthropic partnerships that foster equitable opportunities and benefits for the people of Oakland.
José also served as Chief Executive Officer of Inner City Advisors (ICA) from 2004 to 2015. He led ICA to become a nationally recognized, award-winning organization for its work on scaling small businesses and entrepreneurs as a way to create Good Jobs, especially for people with the highest need. In the ten years with ICA, he oversaw a portfolio of companies that created over 5,000 jobs, creating over $150 million in wealth for local residents and collectively generating almost $200 million in revenue. He also created a platform for hundreds of professionals to participate by contributing over $25 million of total pro bono investments into the ICA mission. His innovative thinking led ICA to launch Fund Good Jobs – an investment fund focused on using capital to influence the creation and retention of quality jobs – and the Talent Management Group – an innovative approach that is reshaping the workforce development sector.
José has built a reputation as a visionary leader, strong manager, innovator and relationship-builder who builds mindful and creative organizational cultures that yield high impact and results. Jose is passionate about promoting a fundamental change in the way communities and all its residents benefit from economic development efforts. He is a leader that has convened public, private and community people and resources to solve many communities and business problems.