IRLE logoJob Creation Conference Collage


Marie Maniscalco 
Institute for Research on Labor and Employment, UC Berkeley 


Thursday June 16, 2011 from 9 AM to 4:30 PM

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Seaborg Room at the UC Berkeley Faculty Club 


Big Ideas for Job Creation in a Jobless Recovery 

The Big Ideas for Job Creation Conference, sponsored by the Institute for Research on Labor & Employment, the Institute of Urban & Regional Development, and the Annie E. Casey Foundation, features presentations by the winners of a  national contest for "big ideas" about what cities and states can do to create jobs. Space at the conference venue (the UC-Berkeley Faculty Club) is very limited and registration closes on June 10! Admission is free and lunch will be served.

Big Ideas for Job Creation in a Jobless Recovery 

Thursday, June 16th, 2011

Seaborg Room, UC-Berkeley Faculty Club


8:30-9:00am   Registration and coffee

9:00-9:20am   Welcome: Why Job Creation?

  • Robert Giloth, Annie E. Casey Foundation and Karen Chapple, UC-Berkeley

9:20-10:00am   Keynote Speaker: Kirsten Tobey, Co-founder and CIO of Revolution Foods

10:00-11:30am   State/Federal Employment and Tax Policy      

  • Direct Job Creation Policies in the Aftermath of the Great Recession: David Neumark, UC-Irvine and Public Policy Institute of California
  • Rethinking Work Opportunity: From Tax Credits to Subsidized Job Placements: Elizabeth Lower-Basch, Center for Law and Social Policy
  • Job Preservation through Short Time Compensation: Vera Brusentsev & Wayne Vroman, University of Delaware and Urban Institute
  • Back to the Future: Reclaiming the New Deal’s Direct Job-Creation/Employment Assurance Strategy: Philip Harvey, Rutgers School of Law-Camden 
  • Discussant: Ken Jacobs, Chair of the Center for Labor Research and Education, IRLE

11:30-11:45am   Coffee break

11:45-1:00pm  Green Economy

  • Job Creation in the Waste Diversion Industry: Nancey Green Leigh, Georgia Tech
  • A Revenue Option for Scaling Up Green Retrofit Programs: Bill Lester, University of North Carolina-Chapel Hill
  • Making MUSH Energy Efficient: James Irwin, Satya Rhodes-Conway, Sarah L. White, and Joel Rogers, Center on Wisconsin Strategy, University of Wisconsin-Madison
  • Discussant: Carol Zabin, Research Director of the Center for Labor Research & Education, IRLE

1:00-1:45pm  Lunch

1:45-3:00pm   Enterprise Creation 

  • Leveraging Anchor Institutions for Local Job Creation and Wealth Building:  Ted Howard, Gar Alperovitz & Steven Dubb, The Democracy Collaborative and University of Maryland
  • Leveraging the Federal Tax Code to Promote Self-Employment and State and Local Job Creation: Bill Schweke, Corporation for Enterprise Development
  • Community Based Jobs: Creating Fertile Economic Gardens and Enabling Local Resident Entrepreneurs in Tough Times: Jeannine La Prad & Michael DiRamio, Corporation for a Skilled Workforce
  • Discussant: Jose Corona of Inner City Advisors

3:00-4:15pm   Job Quality

  • Riding the Small Wave in Manufacturing to a Diverse Economy and More Good Jobs: Susan Christopherson, Cornell University
  • Increasing the Skills of Early Childhood Workers to Create Jobs: Stephen Herzenberg & Elaine Weiss, Keystone Research Center and Economic Policy Institute
  • The Big Idea: Flexible Informal Employment as Sustainable Job Creation: Anna Joo Kim, Pomona College
  • Discussant: Jessica Pitt, Initiative Officer, San Francisco Foundation

4:15-4:30pm  Concluding Remarks, Robert Giloth and Karen Chapple


About keynote speaker Kirsten Saenz Toby:

Kirsten Saenz Tobey currently serves as co-founder and Chief Innovation Officer of Revolution Foods. She began her career as a teacher, garden educator and coordinator of experiential education programs, including work at Phillips Academy in Massachusetts and with Amigos de las Americas in Ecuador. Her passion for sustainability and community health led her to run a public health campaign for Earthjustice. Prior to graduate school, Kirsten managed the operations of a field station for the School for Field Studies in Mexico that focused on studying the environmental and socioeconomic impacts of the fishing industry. While writing the business plan for Revolution Foods, Kirsten worked with the United Nations Hunger Task Force to evaluate the scalability of school feeding programs in Ghana and with the McDonald's Corporation to incorporate social and environmental responsibility into the supply chain. Kirsten co-founded Revolution Foods in 2005 to transform the way we feed our students in this country by serving healthy meals and offering nutrition education to low income students. Kirsten is an Aspen Institute for Environmental Leaders Catto Fellow. In 2010, NewSchools Venture Fund named Kirsten and her co founder, Kristin Richmond, Entrepreneurs of the Year. In 2007, she won the Global Social Venture Competition for the Revolution Foods model. Kirsten holds an AB from Brown University and an MBA from UC Berkeley. She lives in Berkeley with her husband Ben and two daughters, Alita and Dakota.

Please contact us if you have any questions about the conference.  We hope to see you there!




Karen Chapple
Associate Professor, City & Regional Planning
Acting Director, Institute for Research on Labor and Employment, UC Berkeley


Speaker Biographies

Opening and Closing Comments

Robert Giloth, Vice President, Center for Family Economic Success and Community Change at the Annie E. Casey Foundation

Bob Giloth oversees Casey’s Center for Family Economic Success, which combines the Foundation’s economic opportunity and community change work. Prior to joining the Foundation in December 1993, Bob managed community development corporations in Baltimore and Chicago and was Deputy Commissioner of Economic Development under Mayor Harold Washington. Bob has a Ph.D. in City and Regional Planning from Cornell University.


Karen Chapple, Associate Professor of City & Regional Planning; Faculty Director, Center for Community Innovation; Acting Director, Institute for Research on Labor & Employment; Associate Director, Institute for Urban and Regional Development

Karen Chapple, Ph.D., is an Associate Professor of City and Regional Planning at the University of California, Berkeley. Chapple specializes in community and economic development, metropolitan planning, and poverty, and has published research on the green economy, business location patterns, spatial mismatch, regional workforce development collaboratives, the relationship between job growth and housing price appreciation, federal housing policy, and regional fair share housing programs. Chapple holds a B.A. in Urban Studies from Columbia University, an M.S.C.R.P from the Pratt Institute, and a Ph.D. from UC Berkeley.


Keynote Speaker

Kirsten Tobey, Co-founder and CIO of Revolution Foods

Kirsten co-founded Revolution Foods in 2005 to transform the way we feed our students in this country by serving healthy meals and offering nutrition education to low income students. In 2010, NewSchools Venture Fund named Kirsten and her co founder, Kristin Richmond, Entrepreneurs of the Year. Kirsten holds an AB from Brown University and an MBA from UC Berkeley.


State/Federal Employment and Tax Policy 

David Neumark, Professor of Economics, UC-Irvine and Public Policy Institute of California

Prof. Neumark holds a Ph.D. in Economics from Harvard University.  His work focuses on local labor markets, enterprise zones, and age discrimination in employment.


Elizabeth Lower-Basch, Senior Policy Analyst for the Workforce Development team at the Center for Law and Social Policy

Elizabeth Lower-Basch’ expertise is federal and state welfare (TANF) policy, other supports for low-income working families (such as refundable tax credits), and job quality. From 1996 to 2006, Ms. Lower-Basch worked for the Office of the Assistant Secretary for Planning and Evaluation at the U.S. Department of Health and Human Services.  Ms. Lower-Basch received a Master of Public Policy from the Kennedy School of Government at Harvard University and a Bachelor of Arts in History from Yale University.




Vera Brusentsev, Professor of Economics, University of Delaware and Urban Institute

Prof. Brusentsev received her Ph.D. in Economics from the University of Dalhousie.  Her teaching covers macroeconomics, monetary economics and international trade.  Her research interests are social protection, unemployment compensation, adoption and parenting. 


Wayne Vroman, Senior Fellow at the Center on Labor, Human Services and Population, University of Delaware and Urban Institute

Wayne Vroman holds a Ph.D. in Economics from the University of Michigan.  He has published work in the fields of employment, wages and non-wage compensation, poverty and the safety net, supplemental security income, and unemployment insurance.


Philip Harvey, Professor, Rutgers School of Law-Camden 

Professor Harvey received his B.A. degree from Yale University, his Ph.D. in economics from the New School for Social Research, and his J.D. from Yale Law School. Professor Harvey's research focuses on public policy options for securing economic and social human rights, with a particular emphasis on the right to work. He teaches Contracts, Labor and Employment Law, Law & Economics, and Social Welfare Law and Policy.


Ken Jacobs, Chair of the Center for Labor Research and Education, IRLE

Ken Jacobs’ areas of specialization include health care coverage, the California budget, low-wage work, the retail industry and public policy. Recent papers have examined the impact that the national health reform law will have on California small businesses, their employees, the self-employed, and the state overall; the economic effects of various options for closing California’s budget deficit; and declining job-based health coverage in California and the U.S. Before joining the Labor Center, Ken was with the Bay Area Organizing Committee (BAOC), an affiliate of the Industrial Areas Foundation.


Green Economy

Nancey Green Leigh, Professor of City and Regional Planning, Georgia Tech

Prof. Leigh holds a PhD in City and Regional Planning from the University of California – Berkeley.  She is the author of over 50 articles and three books.  She specializes in economic development planning with a particular focus on sustainability and redevelopment, and is a national Brownfields Redevelopment expert.


Bill Lester, Assistant Professor, University of North Carolina-Chapel Hill

Prof. Lester employs quantitative and qualitative methods drawn from the fields of labor economics, political science and regional development. His dissertation on living wage laws used a quantitative design to examine their impact on employment and firm growth in California cities and qualitatively compared the organization and evolution of living-wage coalitions given the political establishment in Chicago and San Francisco.  During the past year, Dr. Lester's research has expanded to the employment and job quality prospects of the “green economy”.


Satya Rhodes-Conway, Senior Associate, Center on Wisconsin Strategy, University of Wisconsin-Madison

Satya Rhodes-Conway is a senior associate at the Center on Wisconsin Strategy, where she works on high-road state and local policy and organizes the Mayors’ Innovation Project and the Wisconsin Apollo Alliance. Before coming to COWS, she analyzed state endangered species programs for Defenders of Wildlife, researched and wrote about progressive environmental policy as a policy associate at the State Environmental Resource Center, and taught undergraduate biology and ecology.  Satya also represents Madison’s 12th district on the City Council.


Carol Zabin, Research Director of the Center for Labor Research and Education, IRLE

Carol Zabin (Ph.D. University of California, Berkeley) is a labor economist whose research has addressed job quality, living wages, worker training and other economic development issues in the United States and Mexico. Her current research focuses on the impact of climate change legislation and the burgeoning green economy on California's economy, workers and labor unions. Before joining the Labor Center, she was on the faculty at Tulane University and UCLA.


Enterprise Creation 

Ted Howard, Executive Director, The Democracy Collaborative and University of Maryland

For the past three decades Ted Howard has worked in the not-for-profit/civil society sector, including more than 15 years in international development with NGOs and agencies of the UN system. He is author or co-author of several books, including Ending Hunger, Entropy, and Who Should Play God? He also serves as Chairman of the Board of Search for Common Ground, the world’s largest conflict resolution NGO, and the European Centre for Common Ground, a Belgian NGO.


Bill Schweke, Senior Fellow, Corporation for Enterprise Development

As a Senior Fellow in CFED’s Durham office, Mr. Schweke contributes his expertise in development finance, small business initiatives and local development. His work spans a variety of contexts, including providing technical assistance to state and local governments, developing urban neighborhood development initiatives and designing training courses on rural development, community economic development and local development planning.


Jeannine La Prad, President and CEO, Corporation for a Skilled Workforce

Jeannine La Prad is responsible for strategic leadership and management work that advances the organization's vision and mission, as well as the development of CSW's portfolio of workforce, economic, and community development initiatives and projects. She also helped the State of Michigan develop and implement a Green Jobs Initiative to increase the number of jobs and skilled workers in the areas of renewable energy production, green construction and retrofitting, energy efficiency, green manufacturing, and agriculture and national resource conservation.  She has a Bachelor's degree in organizational psychology and communications, and a Master's degree in higher education policy from the University of Michigan.


Michael DiRamio, Policy Associate, Corporation for a Skilled Workforce

Michael DiRamio works with clients and stakeholders to embrace principles, policies, and practices that advance economic competitiveness and prosperity in ways that help sustain life on the planet.  He is working to inform and advance regional and sector-based efforts to capture the potential of the emerging green economy and help build a solid foundation for the future of people, businesses, and communities.  Michael has a Master's degree in Environmental Policy/Sustainable Systems from the University of Michigan, and a Bachelor's degree in Government/Political Science from Wesleyan University.




Jose Corona, CEO, Inner City Advisors

Since Joining ICA in 2004, Jose Corona has led the organization in helping inner city entrepreneurs achieve success by assembling an unparalleled network of the Bay Area’s foremost business leaders and is often sought out for his ability to understand inner city business trends. Having worked in business and community development for over a decade, Jose is passionate about entrepreneurship. He holds a Bachelor of Science degree from UC Davis, and Entrepreneur Management Development Certification from the UCLA Anderson School of Management.


Job Quality

Susan Christopherson, J. Thomas Clark Professor, City & Regional Planning, Cornell University

Prof. Christopherson is an economic geographer whose research and teaching focus on economic development, urban labor markets, and location patterns in service industries, particularly the media industries. She has written more than 50 articles and 25 policy reports on topics in economic geography and economic development. Christopherson received her Ph.D. from University of California-Berkeley.


Stephen Herzenberg, KRC Executive Director, Keystone Research Center and Economic Policy Institute

Stephen Herzenberg holds a PhD in Economics from MIT. Before joining Keystone, Steve taught at Rutgers University and worked at the U.S. Congressional Office of Technology Assessment and the U.S. Department of Labor (USDOL). At USDOL, he served as assistant to the chief negotiator of the labor side agreement to the North American Free Trade Agreement.


Elaine Weiss, Economic Policy Institute

Elaine Weiss is the National Coordinator for the Broader Bolder Approach to Education, where she works with a high-level Task Force and coalition partners to promote a comprehensive, evidence-based set of policies to allow all children to thrive.  She came to BBA from the Pew Charitable Trusts, where she served as project manager for Pew's Partnership for America’s Economic Success campaign. Ms Weiss holds undergraduate degrees from the University of Maryland and a J.D. from Harvard Law school, and is a PhD candidate in public policy at George Washington University.


Anna Joo Kim, Postdoctoral Fellow in the Environmental Analysis program, Pomona College

Anna Joo Kim’s research analyzes the intersections between low-wage immigrant labor and the informal economy as manifested in one of Los Angeles’ largest ethnic enclaves, Koreatown. She has worked in both research and advocacy with many Los Angeles area non-profit organizations, including the UCLA Downtown Labor Center, the Economic Roundtable, the USC Program for Environmental and Regional Equity, and the Asian Pacific Aids Intervention Team (APAIT). She holds a B.A. in History, Women’s Studies from Claremont McKenna College, M.A. in Ethnic Studies from the University of California, San Diego and a Ph.D. in Urban Planning from the University of California, Los Angeles.


Jessica Pitt, Initiative Officer of the Bay Area Workforce Funding Collaborative, The San Francisco Foundation

Jessica Pitt has 20 years of experience in workforce development, human services, and economic development program planning, management, delivery, and consultation. She holds MCP and PhD degrees from Cornell University and bachelor’s from Wesleyan University.