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Business For Good San Diego

Meet Your New 2022 Board Members + Executive Committee

As Business For Good heads into its fifth year, we’ve got a lot on our plate—in the very best of ways. 

Our membership base continues to grow, despite the continued COVID-19 pandemic and its related hardships. We’ve charted a solid plan to build upon our remarkable policy and organizational accomplishments in 2021. And we are poised to align with, and hold accountable, our elected officials in shaping progressive, functional local policy that improves San Diego for all. 

We rely on the fearless leadership of our Business For Good board of directors to steer our organization in driving real impact across San Diego County. Therefore, we’d like to extend the warmest of welcomes to our two new 2022 Business For Good board members! 

Here is your chance to get to know the guiding force at BFG and understand more deeply the extent of the work they do on our organization’s behalf to amplify the collective voice of small business ownership in San Diego.

A huge thank you to all of our board members—new, current, and past—for their steadfast dedication to the success of Business For Good!

Our New 2022 Business For Good Board Members

Alexis Villanueva

Business Name: City Heights Community Development Corporation 

What you do and who you work with: I am Senior Program Manager of Economic Development for City Heights CDC, where we provide business development technical services to businesses in City Heights. Primarily, we serve immigrant and refugee-owned businesses.

The Business For Good policy action area that resonates with you the most?

Small Business Investment. From an economic development perspective, all our systems to create small business success come from how we support them to grow, create jobs, and contribute to the community in an impactful way. I believe we can better drive success in the three other BFG policy action areas of Homelessness, Environmental Health, and Immigration by helping small businesses contribute to solving some of our communities’ most pressing challenges. It works—I have seen it happen in my career more than I can say! I am excited to keep pushing for policy that aligns and supports the investment in small businesses throughout San Diego County. 

Why did you want to join the Business For Good board of directors? I have followed BFG for some years now, and I wanted to get involved when I felt that my contributions could help the most. COVID-19 has really shed a spotlight on the issues of social justice and inequity in the U.S. It’s clear that now is the time. I could not sit on the sidelines any longer. I truly believe in what BFG is doing and advocating for. Change begins with giving our small businesses the power to be part of the larger solution.

What do you love most about San Diego? I was born and raised in San Diego. It is amazing to be able to spend a day at the beach, in the mountains, or in the desert—all in the same day, if you want. We are also in one of the biggest border regions in the world, which provides so much access to visit Mexico and absorb all that is great about it. I don’t think I could leave!

What does “doing business for good” mean to you personally? Advocacy. For the voice that is not always in the room, at the table, or in the email chain. BFG is doing that work. It’s advocating for progressive policy change that impacts the lives of real people. I am so excited to engage with and push for that change, along with all the other BFG members and stakeholders. 

Which current San Diego policy are you most excited to see flourish in the next 1-2 years? 

  • Small business investment: Specifically for BIPOC business owners and those in vulnerable and/or low-income communities
  • Quality jobs: Putting together an effective framework for industries where our services and frontline workers exist 
  • Digital Equity: Believe it or not, there are still areas in San Diego that lack access to digital accessibility. In this day and age, that is completely unacceptable. It is a social justice issue, and I hope to help make headway toward change.

Sid Voorakkara 

Business Name: Strategies 360

What you do and who you work with: We’re a full-service research, public affairs, and communications firm that brings deep expertise and sharp, strategic thinking that gets results. We are an overall thought partner for government, small business, and nonprofits. 

The Business For Good policy focus area that resonates with you the most?

All four! I really think about Environmental Health as environmental justice. The policy work BFG fights for in this arena reduces the impact of policies that predominantly harm low-income communities and communities of color. 

Regarding Homelessness, I believe we must address San Diego’s homelessness crisis in a coordinated strategy that connects private and public sectors to develop meaningful short and long-term solutions. This means decriminalizing homelessness and creating viable pathways to housing and healthcare.

In terms of Small Businesses Investment, it’s clear that small businesses continue to struggle as we manage and mitigate the impact of COVID-19. We need resources that ensure we keep our local businesses afloat to serve and care for our communities, families, employees, and of course, ourselves. This connects closely to Immigration policy here in San Diego, as well. New Americans drive economic prosperity, and BFG’s other three policy action areas help ensure a vibrant, healthy, and inclusive community and local economy.

Why did you want to join the Business For Good board of directors? As someone who helped secure funding for the San Diego Chapter of Main Street Alliance—which eventually became Business For Good—I am proud to say I’ve been with BFG in some capacity since before it even existed. 

As such, I have a strong desire to see BFG continue to grow and prosper so it can be a strong collective voice for our local small business community. There are so many big issues that our San Diego County is grappling with, from homelessness to immigration to workforce development. In all of these issues, and many more, BFG plays a crucial role in shaping the equitable future of our region.

What do you love most about San Diego? Tacos, am I right?

What does “doing business for good” mean to you personally? It means understanding that my business, and our local San Diego business community, is part of our larger community ecosystem. As small business owners, we play a role in shaping San Diego’s future, standing up for what we believe is right, and caring for our employees, neighborhoods, and all who live in our region.

Which current San Diego policy are you most excited to see flourish in the next 1-2 years? 

I must say, seeing real solutions to our homelessness crisis. 

The 2022 Business For Good Board Executive Committee

The force that guides the united work of Business For Good’s ten outstanding board members is our board’s Executive Committee. 

Comprised of four seats—Chair, Vice Chair, Treasurer, and Secretary—our dedicated Executive Committee fuels BFG’s intentional growth and long-term sustainability. Read on to get familiar with who sits on our 2022 Executive Committee, and the important work they do for our organization. 

Board Chair: Mikey Knab 

What the Chair does: The BFG Chair partners with our Managing Director and all board members to provide the leadership that guides the overall mission and vision of Business For Good. 

Specific responsibilities include: 

  • General control and management of the affairs, property, and business of BFG
  • Presiding at all meetings of the Members and of the Board of Directors
  • Performing all duties related to the office of President and Chairperson, and other duties as may from time to time be assigned by the Board of Directors.
  • Collaborate with our Managing Director to generate substantial annual revenue and foster overall BFG financial health 
  • Treat BFG as a top philanthropic priority 
  • Identify and steward major donors—individual, corporate, and government—who align with BFG’s mission and vision 

Board Vice Chair: Alexis Villanueva

What the Vice Chair does: Our Vice Chair is a partner to the Chair and other board members. In the event the Chair is absent or unable to act, the VC assumes the duties and powers of this position. They also perform other duties, and may have additional authority, as prescribed by the Board of Directors.

Specific responsibilities include:

  • Prepare to assume the office of the board Chair, should such an event be necessary
  • Work closely with Managing Director and other board members to fulfill the BFG mission
  • Support the board Chair in the execution of their duties 
  • Serve on BFG member committees when requested and serve as leadership when needed
  • In collaboration with the Managing Director and Chair, help generate substantial annual revenue and foster overall BFG financial health 
  • Treat BFG as a top philanthropic priority 
  • In conjunction with the Chair, help identify and steward major donors—individual, corporate, and government—who align with BFG’s mission and vision 

Board Treasurer: Christian Batista 

What the Treasurer does: Our BFG Treasurer works closely with the Managing Director, Chair, and Executive Committee. They manage BFG’s finances and make decisions in relation to organizational spending and investing. 

Specific responsibilities include:

  • Ensure the on-time filing of all BFG tax-related documents and required legal forms to maintain the organization’s tax-exempt status 
  • Assist in preparing the annual budget
  • Receive and deposit funds paid to the organization, including dues
  • Disburse funds in the manner budgeted or authorized by the BFG Board of Directors 
  • Maintain adequate financial records and provide written reports for BFG annual board meetings, as requested
  • Review the annual audit and present it to the board 
  • Keep track of all financial statements, which they also present at regular board meetings 

Board Secretary: Indra Gardiner Bowers 

What the Secretary does: The BFG Secretary is a partner to the Managing Director and other board members. The Secretary distributes an agenda and any relevant documents before all meetings and prepares official board meeting minutes. 

Specific responsibilities include: 

  • Ensure the agenda is prepared and distributes agenda in advance of the meeting
  • Oversee minutes of the meeting and records motions, votes, discussions, and decisions 
  • Prepare and provide previous meeting minutes to the board members before the next meeting and record any changes 
  • Ensures important documents (bylaws, Form-990, roster of board members) are accessible to BFG members 
  • Be the certified custodian of the records of BFG, in both digital and hard copy form 
  • Maintain the detailed, up-to-date BFG member database 

Want to connect with other cool, values-aligned local business owners to help drive real policy change in San Diego? Join us, and become a Business For Good member today!

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