Monterey Park, CA – CAUSE held the first Leadership Institute session of 2018 at the SoCalGas Monterey Park Learning Center.
Lindsey Horowitz, Director of Programs at CAUSE, welcomed the 2018 Leadership Institute fellows and introduced Adam Ma, External Affairs at SoCalGas and CAUSE Boardmember, who briefly shared his work with building strong relations among marginalized communities for SoCalGas.
As the first speaker of the day, John E. Kobara, COO and EVP of California Community Foundation, steered a conversation on career mapping and the importance of not letting external expectations interfere with the goals that one truly wishes to pursue. To build valuable, supportive relationships, he encouraged the fellows to prioritize authenticity in their interactions and relationships, stating: “The faster we can get to authenticity and vulnerability…the faster we get what we want.”
Afterwards, Dr. Shawn Landres, Senior Advisor at the Future of Cities: Leading in LA, gave the cohort an overview of civic leadership in Los Angeles. He shared that in a city as huge and diverse as Los Angeles, civic processes become very complicated and nuanced, making it especially important to look at historical context when pursuing solutions. “Our history is always with us. Our history shows us the mistakes that were made, and the progress that was made.”
When addressing disagreements in policy discussions, he advises that while one cannot make everyone happy, one can “come to the decision from a place of knowledge, and a place of trying to understand…Make your adversary’s point as best as you can, before you make your own argument.”
Over lunch, Charlie Woo, Board Chair of CAUSE, shared his personal experiences as a strong supporter for APA immigrant communities and his motivations in pushing for more APA leadership in both the private and public sectors. He expressed, “To address issues, we need strong community leaders.”
Lastly, Kim Yamasaki, Executive Director of CAUSE, and Lindsey Horowitz gave the fellows an overview of CAUSE programs and plans for the Leadership Institute for the next six months. We look forward to working with our 2018 Leadership Institute fellows!