Board of Directors
Senior Vice President and Regional Manager, Bank of Marin
Charlie is a Senior Vice President and Regional Manager for the Bank of Marin and is responsible for managing the San Francisco commercial banking office and a middle market commercial banking group in Marin County. His banking groups focus on developing commercial lending relationships with companies that have annual revenues from $10 million to $100 million. Charlie has over 20 years of commercial banking experience where he has developed and managed relationships within many different industry segments including manufacturing, distribution, professional firms, construction, and real estate investment. He holds a B.A in international Studies from Vassar College and an M.B.A. from Washington University in St. Louis. Charlie lives in Mill Valley with his wife and three kids.
Supervisor Damon Connolly
Marin County Supervisor, District 1
Prior to serving the people of Marin County’s District 1 as County Supervisor, Damon spent seven years on the San Rafael City Council, and was a member of the Board of Trustees of the Dixie School District. Damon also was a founding member of the Marin Clean Energy Board of Directors, serving as Board Chair from June of 2011 to November of 2014.
A Bay Area native, Damon attended college and law school at UC Berkeley. He has lived in San Rafael for the past nineteen years with his wife, Dawn, and their two daughters. Before opening his own law practice in San Rafael, Damon was a Supervising Deputy California Attorney General, prosecuting the energy companies that gouged our state during the energy crisis of 2000-2001.
Damon’s priorities on the Board of Supervisors include ensuring that county agencies and government are responsive to the public, efficient and effective with their budgets. He is also dedicated to securing a healthy range of housing opportunities in Marin that fit within the character of our communities, addressing homelessness with every tool at our disposal, maximizing mobility and connectivity through effective transportation policy and planning, implementing the County’s Climate Action Plan and preserving our open space.
Linda Jacobs Davis
CEO, Center for Volunteer and Nonprofit Leadership
Since 2002, Linda Davis has served as the Chief Executive Officer of the Center of Volunteer and Nonprofit Leadership (CVNL). The Center advances nonprofits and volunteerism by strengthening leadership, encouraging innovation, and empowering individuals in the Marin community.
Linda has 35 years’ experience in nonprofit management; she is a frequent presenter and facilitator on issues and trends in the nonprofit sector and consults with nonprofits on board governance, executive transition, and leadership development.
Linda is the Board President of the California Association of Nonprofits. In 2011, Linda was inducted into the Marin Women’s Hall of Fame. Linda graduated from University of South Florida and is a graduate of the U.S. Chamber of Commerce Institute for Organization Management. Linda has lived in Marin County since 1978, is married and has two sons.
Community Development Manager, Marin Clean Energy
As Marin Clean Energy’s (MCE) Community Development Manager, Alex collaborates with stakeholders throughout MCE’s service area to advance sustainable development programs and expand access to competitively-priced renewable energy. By cultivating partnerships with residents, businesses, local leaders, and community groups, Alex helps Marin’s energy consumers determine which resources they wish to support through their electricity purchases. To this end, he conducts strategic outreach and advocacy, and helps manage MCE’s 100% renewable Deep Green program, and its 100% Marin-based Local Sol program.
Prior to joining MCE, Alex worked as the campaign manager for the victorious Palo Alto Green Energy & Compost Initiative (PAGE). He received his law degree from UC Berkeley’s Boalt Hall, where he earned certificates of specialization in environmental law and clean technology law. He has a BA in political science and human rights from Columbia University. Alex is thrilled to work with California’s first community choice energy program, based in beautiful Marin County.
President/CEO, Marin Convention and Visitors Bureau
Mark Essman is the President/CEO of the Marin Convention and Visitors Bureau. Mark has 25 years of experience in business association, hospitality, film promotion and event development.
Mark is originally from Midwestern United States, where he was a chamber of commerce executive. He has also been the director of various convention and visitors bureaus, on-site visitors’ centers, and managed numerous large indoor and outdoor events, ranging from 50 people to 500,000.
He holds a BA degree in Journalism. He also graduated from the Institute of Organizational Management, a six-year for-profit leadership and management development program. In addition, he completed a two-year graduate program in economic development. He has numerous credit hours in hospitality education, event promotion, as well as ten years of experience in economic development and small business retention.
Director of Strategic Planning and Business Development, Marin General Hospital
As the Director of Strategic Planning and Business Development at Marin General Hospital, Mary Friedman oversees strategic planning initiatives and leads new program and service development. This includes establishing relationships with outside organizations that enable Marin General Hospital to offer a greater breadth of services, as well as increased access to cutting edge technology, and medical expertise in the community.
Prior to joining Marin General Hospital, Mary worked at UC San Diego Health System leading their reference laboratory business operations and pricing strategy efforts. Mary also spent time at Accenture in the Health and Life Sciences Consulting Practice working with payers and providers to implement health information technologies where she helped establish the Center for Technology Integration at El Camino Hospital. Mary holds a bachelor’s degree from UC Berkeley in Economics and Political Science and a master’s degree from the Harvard T.H. Chan School of Public Health in Healthcare Policy and Management. Mary grew up in the Bay Area and in her free time loves to be outdoors with her family.
Nina H. Gardner, J.D.
Partner & Executive Vice President at Filice Insurance Agency
Nina Gardner is Partner and Executive Vice President with Filice Insurance. Filice Insurance is a large California based employee benefits consultancy that has offices in San Rafael, San Jose, Moraga, Sacramento and Orange County. Nina manages the San Rafael office and focuses on relationship management, strategic benefit planning, and new client acquisition. Prior to joining Filice, Nina was an employment law attorney with Sedgwick, Detert, Moran & Arnold and Littler, Mendelson, both large, national law firms. Prior to law school, Nina worked as a manager of a broadcast union, N.A.B.E.T and as a paralegal for Wild, Carey & Fife. Nina holds a B.A. in Comparative Literature with highest honors from U.C. Berkeley and a J.D. from Berkeley Law (Boalt Hall School of Law) at U.C. Berkeley. She is also one of the co-founders and board members of Marin Business Forum.
Business Development Manager, Nelson Staffing
Debi has held the role of Business Development Manager for Nelson Staffing’s Marin office for over 6 years. She works with small and large companies of all kinds to help them make good decisions regarding hiring, temporary staffing, and compliance. Debi’s years of teaching, fundraising, ad sales, and writing have led her to a successful career in staffing, which combines her passions for education, negotiating, and team-building. Debi earned her BA in French Studies and an Emergency Teaching Credential from San Francisco State University, a certificate of course completion from L’Alliance Francaise in Paris, and is a graduate of the San Rafael Chamber Leadership Institute. She holds numerous volunteer positions including Board of Directors for the San Rafael Chamber of Commerce, Board Liaison for the San Rafael Chamber Leadership Institute, BNI Membership Team, San Rafael Chamber Women of Industry Co-Chair, past PA Co-President for JCHS, Marin IGI Committee of the Jewish Federation, Congregation Rodef Shalom Board Selection committee, Marin Human Resources past Membership Chair, Marin Forum member. Debi raised her two daughters in San Rafael, and is enjoying watching their success in college.
VP, Retail Banking Manager, Opus Bank
Karen is a thirty year veteran in business and financial service and a twenty year North Bay resident; is a graduate of the USD, California Professional School of Banking and has served on various boards, before this the most recent appointment to the Marin Economic Forum. Karen currently represents Opus Bank as VP and Retail Banking Manager serving the North Bay and San Francisco markets. The previous seven years served as VP and Branch Manager for Citibank’s San Rafael Northgate Office while participating in her passion of local community outreach.
President/Partner, International ProInsurance LLC
As President and CEO of ProInsurance, David is responsible for strategic planning, client development and carrier relations. David’s experience includes senior management positions with Willis-HRH, a leading global insurance broker, as well as managing partner and general counsel responsibilities with Palmer & Cay, a large privately-held brokerage firm based in Savannah, Georgia.
David has over 20 years’ experience building and managing insurance brokerage operations, developing client relations and overseeing production teams. David earned a Bachelor of Science in accounting from Marquette University and a law degree from St Louis University School of Law. He currently resides in Mill Valley with his wife and three daughters.
Attorney, Hornstein Law
Val Hornstein is a principal attorney at Hornstein Law Offices, with offices in San Francisco and Marin County. The firm specializes in civil litigation and business transactions with emphases in entrepreneurship, technology & intellectual property, securities & finance, real estate and entertainment.
Val has lived and worked in Marin County since 1987 and has raised two daughters through its public school system. Val graduated from Colgate University (A.B.) and George Washington University (J.D.) and is a member of the Bar of the States of California, District of Columbia and New York and the Supreme Court of the United States.
Adam Krivatsy, AIA, AICP
Principal, Adam Krivatsy and Associates
Adam Krivatsy is a Hungarian-born architect and urban planner with five decades of international experience in serving clients throughout the world. He now lives in Sausalito, with his wife of 34 years and serves the City Council and its staff in an advisory capacity through various Committees and Task Forces.
As an immigrant of 1956, Adam spent his first five years in the United States by establishing a solid foundation for his professional career. He was part of the Zeckendorff/I.M. Pei developer/Architect team and rounded out his professional studies by earning a Master’s Degree from Columbia University’s School of Architecture, Department of Urban Planning. After graduation, he assumed a teaching position at his Alma Mater.
John W. Maher, CPA, CGMA
John Maher is the CEO of Maher Accountancy, a full-service audit, accounting and consulting firm founded in 1983. A substantial portion of John’s practice focuses on audits of not-for-profit and governmental agencies and consulting regarding internal control and grant compliance. Maher Accountancy also provides the accounting departments function for several local governmental, healthcare and public finance entities.
John is a member of the American Institute of CPAs and California Society of CPAs and holds the Chartered Global Management Accountant designation.
Mary O’Mara, MBA
Executive Director, Marinlink
Mary Mariani O’Mara is the Co-Founder and Executive Director of Marinlink. She has grown MarinLink from an idea to an effective nonprofit and fiscal sponsor umbrella for more than 100 Marin County based projects. She brings her teaching experience in both schools and nonprofits, and business acumen to create infrastructure and support for MarinLink community based projects, programs, and initiatives. She is currently a Core Adjunct with National University. Mary grew up in Marin County and is a graduate of San Domenico High School, San Francisco State University, and she holds an MBA in Strategic Leadership from Dominican University of California.
Principal, Russell Architects
Mr. Russell is a Managing and Design Principal with Russell Architects, with offices in San Rafael, CA. He has over 40 years of experience in Architecture, Planning, and Interior Design, including single and multi-family/affordable housing, commercial, industrial and institutional projects. A Southern California native, he graduated with honors from the Cornell University College of Architecture in 1970, and has lived in the San Francisco Bay Area since 1980. He has been an active participant in civic and business affairs, including Board Chairman for the San Rafael Chamber of Commerce, Chairman of the Advocates for Housing and Economic Development (AHED) Committee, Board Member of the Marin Environmental Housing Collaborative (MEHC), a non-profit advocacy group, and Board Member of the Marin Economic Forum, a non-profit group dedicated to the attraction and retention of businesses in Marin County.
General Manager, Spinnaker Restaurant
Jeff has been actively involved in the Hospitality restaurant business for over 20 years with the past 15 years being in Sausalito as a general manager of the Spinnaker Restaurant. Additionally he is an adjunct professor at the University of San Francisco Hospitality Industry Management Program.
President, Marin County Building and Construction Council
A Mid-South native, Bill graduated from Memphis University with a BA. The following year he started a sheet metal business in Memphis Tennessee, but discontinued that when he moved to Novato in 1977. Bill joined the Sheet Metal Workers Local 104 the next year and worked in the Bay area as apprentice, journeyman, foreman and general foreman until 1994. That year, he was elected as a business representative for Local 104 and served on the pension plan, healthcare plan, credit union and the local joint apprenticeship committee as board member.
Retired in 2006 and was appointed and currently serve as business manager of the Marin County Building and Construction Trades Council. I also chair the construction committee with the Marin WIB and sit on the North Bay Watershed Association and a board member to the State Building Trades Council.
Bill joined the solar industry in 1978, co-founded SolarCraft in 1984, and has since helped to build one of the most recognized names in the industry. Bill holds B, (General Building), C10 (Electrical) and C46 (Solar) contractor’s licenses He has served as a Subject Matter Expert for the California State Contractors Licensing Board for the development and update of the Solar Energy License requirements for over ten years, and is one of a few individuals that are certified in both solar electric and solar thermal technologies by NABCEP, the North American Board of Certified Energy Practitioners (www.nabcep.org)). Bill is currently a member of the North Bay Leadership Council, (www.northbaycouncil.org), and a member of the Board of Directors of the California Solar Energy Industries Association, (www.CALSEIA.org)),
Bill and his wife Deborah are longtime Sonoma residents where they also own and operate SoloQuest Learning Center, an accredited private school where Middle and High School students learn through individualized and small group instruction.
Senior Vice President/Senior Portfolio Management Officer – Global Commercial Banking, Bank of America Merrill Lynch
Carlo is a Senior Vice President / Senior Portfolio Management Officer in Global Commercial Banking at Bank of America Merrill Lynch supporting San Francisco, Marin, Napa and Sonoma Counties. He is responsible for underwriting, structuring and consulting commercial clients on their financing needs. Carlo has single signing credit approval authority which has served as a strategic advantage in expediting the underwriting process for his clients.
Prior to joining Bank of America Merrill Lynch, he was a Director / Senior Relationship Manager in the Corporate Banking Group at Union Bank, and Vice President / Senior Relationship Manager in the Credit Resolution Group with Wells Fargo Bank. Carlo’s portfolios consisted of relationships from the Corporate, Capital Markets, Middle Market Commercial, and Global Banking groups in the Pacific Northwest Regions. He has a B.S. in Business Administration from Saint Mary’s College of Moraga, and an MBA from CSUEB.
Manager, Straus Ranch and Cheese Trail Map; Actress
Vivien grew up on her family’s dairy in Marshall. At first she ran away from the remote existence to become an actress. When her brother, Albert, transitioned the dairy to organic in 1993 and opened Straus Family Creamery, she came back to help in order to make sure the farm survived. She served as VP of Marketing of Straus Family Creamery for eleven years, worked as the Public Relations Coordinator at Cowgirl Creamery and currently manages Straus Home Ranch and its vacation rental. She created and manages the Sonoma Marin Cheese Trail project and California’s CheeseTrail.org. In addition, she recently completed a run of her one-woman show “E-i-E-i-OY! In Bed with the Farmer’s Daughter”
President Marin County Region, Pacific Union and Christie’s International Real Estate
Brent is currently the President of Pacific Union International, Inc. responsible for the combined operations in Marin County. In 2013, she led a team of 77 real estate professionals to achieve a combined sales production of just under $1.3B.
Her 30 years of experience includes roles as a Vice President of Worldwide Sales & Operations at both IBM Corporation and Lotus Development Corporation, where she was responsible for multiple teams of sale professionals generating revenue of $700 million per year.
In addition to Lotus and IBM, Brent held executive level management positions at Cogito Learning Media and Abilizer Solutions. Prior to joining Pacific Union, she was Vice President at Frank Howard Allen, where she was responsible for the Tiburon / Belvedere operation for five years.
David Zwicky, FACHE
Director of Business Strategy, Hospice by the Bay
David Zwicky has a 35 year career in healthcare management that spans the continuum from pre-hospital emergency care, to acute care hospitals and most recently, hospice and palliative care.
For the last 6 years he has been a member of the senior management team at Hospice by the Bay in the position of Director of Business Strategy. His responsibilities include facilitating the strategic planning process and identifying and developing opportunities for program enhancements, collaborative partnerships and strategic initiatives. His previous positions include Regional Director and Director of Provider Contracting with VistaCare hospice headquartered in Arizona. He was the Vice President of Network Development for Hospice of Michigan prior to that.
He serves on the Marin County Workforce Investment Board and is the past chair of its Healthcare Committee.