Speakers

Showing 13-24 of 28 results

Jose L. Fierro, DVM., Ph.D.

Jose L. Fierro, DVM., Ph.D.

President/Superintendent, Cerritos CCD

Dr. Jose Fierro began his tenure as President/Superintendent of the Cerritos Community College District in July 2015. Located in the Southeast Los Angeles region of California, Cerritos College is the foremost launchpad for upward social mobility in the local community. Dr. Fierro’s commitment to increasing educational access, success, and completion is reflected in the innovative ways that Cerritos College connects with the community and students.

Since his arrival in 2015, the community has seen a 386 percent increase in completion of transfer-level math courses in a student’s first year, and a 107 percent increase in completion of transfer-level English in a student’s first year. These momentum points are significant factors to a students’ success, as demonstrated by an 85 percent increase in the number of degree and certificate awards at Cerritos College.

With the support of time-tested partnerships between Cerritos College and local school districts, Dr. Fierro launched Cerritos Complete in 2016. More than a Promise Program, Cerritos Complete provides easy access to college for high school seniors. Cerritos Complete increases the velocity of completion through wraparound student services and a merit-based scholarship component. Cerritos Complete won the 2018 Examples of Excelencia Award in the Associate Level category, which is the only national effort to identify and promote evidence-based practices that help accelerate Latino student success in higher education. The program was also selected as a finalist for the 2018 Bellwether Award.

Dr. Fierro is a 2020-2021 Aspen Presidential Fellow and a 2017 Wheelhouse Fellow. He serves on various boards at the local, state, and national levels, including 2021-2022 President-Elect of the Chief Executive Officers of the California Community Colleges (CEOCCC) Board, Community College League Board of Directors, 2021 President-Elect of the National Community College Hispanic Council Board of Directors (NCCHC), Western Interstate Commission for Higher Education Alliance Executive Committee, 2021-2022 President of the California Association of Latino Community College Trustees and Administrators (CALCCTA) Board, Racial Equity and Inclusive Excellence (REIE) Taskforce, Los Angeles/Orange County Regional Consortium Governance Council, Coast Plaza Hospital Board of Directors in Norwalk, and the National Association of Community College Teachers Executive Board (NACCTEP).

Joseph Quintana

Joseph Quintana

Chief Operating Officer, Foundation for California Community Colleges

Joseph Quintana is Chief Operating Officer of the Foundation for California Community Colleges and a key executive liaison to the California Community Colleges Chancellor’s Office. A recognized and well-respected expert of the California Community College system, Quintana’s strategic executive leadership, stalwart guidance, and programmatic initiative and oversight have directly contributed to the Foundation’s continued and significant year-over-year growth.

Quintana first served, proudly, as a Foundation student intern through the Career Pathway Program, where he worked for the California Community Colleges Chancellor’s Office supporting the 17-member Board of Governors. He advanced to become Executive Director of CollegeBuys, the nation’s premiere community college focused procurement program. As Executive Director, Quintana developed and executed partnership agreements, public code complaint contracts, and cooperative purchasing programs that continue to provide significant discounts to California Community College students, faculty, staff, and the system. His system expertise, operational acumen, and strong ability to build and maintain key partnerships led to Quintana’s COO appointment in 2016.

Keetha Mills

Keetha Mills

President and Chief Executive Officer, Foundation for California Community Colleges

Keetha Mills is President and CEO of the Foundation for California Community Colleges. Under her leadership, the Foundation has expanded overall impact through the development and delivery of more than 40 mission-aligned programs and services across five areas of impact: student success, workforce development, equity, community impact, and system support. Since her appointment in 2012, the Foundation has significantly increased available resources to total over $50 million in annual support of the California Community Colleges and its students. Inspired to further this success, the Foundation has launched an ambitious goal to double its impact over the next decade, with Mills challenging her team to create innovative solutions and forge valuable partnerships that will continue to drive annual increases in resources brought in by the Foundation to benefit the California Community Colleges.

Mills’ professional background includes over 20 years of experience in executive leadership, finance, accounting, and operations, which she leverages to lead the nonprofit through a business-centric lens. Credited to her focus on operational discipline, the Foundation continues to achieve strategic year-after-year growth, resulting in an expanded portfolio of resources, services, and specialized programs that increase opportunity and improve outcomes for more than 2.1 million students across all 116 community colleges.

Kim Carrillo

Kim Carrillo

Purchasing Supervisor, Los Rios CCD

Kim Carrillo graduated with a B.S. from CSU Sacramento and is Interim Purchasing Supervisor for Los Rios Community College District, servicing California’s second largest community college district. She provides public bid and procurement expertise to support the successful implementation of the District’s $1 billion capital building program and facilities maintenance and operations of 4.5 million square feet of District space. Kim is a contributing member to the CCC Facilities Procurement Guidebook, and NCCCPG committees. She deployed electronic bidding and has successfully bid out over $60 million in new construction projects since 2020. Having worked for over 13 years in higher education, she has a well-informed perspective to apply procurement strategy, leverage cooperative agreements, and makes efforts to increase the District’s vendor diversity.

Kim Simonds

Kim Simonds

Purchasing Supervisor, MiraCosta CCD

Kim Simonds is the Purchasing Supervisor at MiraCosta College. She has a Bachelor of Science degree in Organizational Leadership from Colorado State University and a Master of Public Administration from California State University, Long Beach. She has over 20 years of procurement experience in the California Community College System. In the 13 years she has been with MiraCosta College, she has specialized in Public Works/Construction including related professional services and Contract Administration.

Mina Hernandez

Mina Hernandez

Director, Purchasing & Material Management, MiraCosta CCD

Mina Hernandez is the Director of Purchasing and Material Management at MiraCosta Community College District. She provides innovative leadership at MiraCosta which includes contracts administration and overseeing procurement, warehouse, mailroom and the copy center operations. Prior to MiraCosta, she was the Executive Director of General Services for West Valley-Mission Community College District. Mina is a statewide leader. She led the efforts in creating the Purchasing Guidebook and Purchasing-Facilities Guidebook, which serves as best practice guides for the California Community College System. Mina is a frequent presenter on topics related to innovation in procurement and contract management. She has led many efforts to streamline and modernize procurement practices at the various higher education institutions she has worked. In March 2021, she was selected by PlanetBids as an awardee for the annual Breaking Barriers award. In October 2021, she was awarded the CHEC Focus on Efficiency Award for leading the Purchasing-Facilities Guidebook, along with being awarded with her team for their modernization efforts with MiraCosta’s procurement processes during COVID-19. Mina graduated with a Master of Administration from Northern Arizona University in 2012. She has a multifaceted background, having worked in higher education administration for fifteen years and in the private sector as a legal professional for over a decade.

Nick Newkirk

Nick Newkirk

Purchasing and Contracts Manager, South Orange County CCD

Nick Newkirk is the Purchasing and Contracts Manager for the South Orange County Community College District (SOCCCD), where he has served since 2018. Prior to his current position with SOCCCD, he served as the Director of Purchasing for Perris Union High School District for four years. Nick previously served as chair and co-founder of the Riverside County Purchasing Collaborative and received the Association of California School Administrators (ACSA) Region XIX Business Services Administrator of the Year Award for 2016-17. At the age of 17, he started his career in school business as a student worker within the accounting apprenticeship program for Murrieta Valley Unified School District, where he stayed and worked as a classified staff member within the purchasing and payroll departments for 14 years.

Patty Samford

Patty Samford

Purchasing Supervisor, San Joaquin Delta Community College

Patty Samford has been the Purchasing Supervisor at San Joaquin Delta Community College in Stockton, CA since 2018. Patty has led her team through many initiatives, most notably the implementation of Oracle financial system and Planet Bids online bidding system. Although Patty’s term as co-chair for the Northern California Community College Purchasing group ends May 1, 2022, she plans to continue to be an active participant in the California Community College Purchasing community.

Priya Jerome

Priya Jerome

Executive Director of Procurement, Central Services and Risk Management, South Orange County CCD

Priya Jerome has over 23 years of combined private and public sector experience in managing and overseeing complex supply chain activities globally. Working in the private sector, Priya honed valuable skills in business process improvements to drive overall efficacies and cost savings across the entire supply chain. Over the past 12 years, she has managed the Procurement, Contracting, Central Services and Risk Management activities at two California community college districts, where she successfully implemented web based, fully integrated e-procurement systems and contracts management systems. These implementations were widely recognized for delivering cost, time, process, and productivity efficiencies. Priya joined the South Orange County Community College District (SOCCCD) team as the Executive Director of Procurement, Central Services, and Risk Management in 2018 where she continues to passionately focus her endeavors in providing the best possible educational experience to all students through the services her division provides. She leads a large, centralized division supporting two colleges and the District with a deep understanding of distinctive business needs in education, high currency in codes, statutes and regulations, and a unique private sector perspective for customer service and process improvements. In any given year she oversees an average of 1,500 contracts, 3,600 purchase orders, jointly valued over $210 million and over 25 large publicly procured bids and RFQ&Ps. Priya’s leadership and commitment to excellence has been recognized in the various personal and institutional awards/recognitions she has won. In 2019 she was recognized as the Administrator of the Year at SOCCCD and in 2020 she was recognized as the Southern California Procurement Professional of the Year. In 2021 her District won the much-coveted Orange County Turning Red Tape to Red Carpet Award for Incorporating Innovative Technology for converting SOCCCD into a Fully Online Bidding, Contracting and Public Procurement Organization an effort she spearheaded from start to successful completion. Priya is active in several state organizations in support of community college procurement and risk management initiatives. She is the Vice President of the board for the Protected Insurance Program for Schools and Community Colleges (PIPS), a joint powers authority which is responsible for workers’ compensation insurance claims. She is the Vice Chair of the Underwriting Committee for the Statewide Association of Community Colleges (SWACC), which is responsible for property and liability insurance. She is also a select member of the CollegeBuys program (Foundation for CA Community Colleges, an arm of the CA Community Colleges Chancellor’s Office) advisory group that contributes system-wide towards leveraging combined/streamlining purchasing powers, total cost of ownership, and shared best practices. Within the advisory group, she additionally contributes as a co-chair in the Legislative and Policy Workgroup. Priya holds a Master of Business Administration degree from Queensland Institute of Technology, Brisbane, Australia.

Rebekah Cearley

Rebekah Cearley

Legislative Advocate, Murdoch, Walrath & Holmes

Rebekah Cearley is a partner at Murdoch, Walrath & Holmes and a legislative advocate for education entities including the Coalition for Adequate School Housing, the Community College Facility Coalition, and the County School Facilities Consortium. She has over fifteen years of experience in the State advocacy sector, helping clients from small associations to large companies navigate the State budget, legislative, and regulatory processes. She previously served as a consultant to school districts participating in the State School Facility Program, assisting them with accessing state grant dollars for facility projects. Rebekah has a B.A. in Political Science from the University of California, Berkeley.

Ria Diaz

Ria Diaz

Director of Client Services, PlanetBids

Since 2006, Ms. Diaz has made it a mission to work with every PB System™ client to ensure that all users are trained to get maximum usage of the system while complying with their internal purchasing guidelines. Working with everyone from small and local business advocate groups to assigned personnel at large agencies, Ms. Diaz is also responsible for on-site training, refresher training, webinars, and surveys to better serve all PlanetBids clients.

Prior to joining PlanetBids, Ms. Diaz worked in the San Jose State University (SJSU) Purchasing Department. She has earned a long list of accolades, including the SARA Gold award from the Dept. of General Services for being the top Small Business and Disabled Veteran Business Enterprise (SB/DVBE) Advocate of the year, and 3 No Matter What Awards in Excellence and 6 You Make the Difference Awards from SJSU. In 2006, Ms. Diaz was the first recipient of the Most Outstanding BidsOnline™ user award at the 1st Annual PlanetBids Users Conference, proof of her 360° knowledge of the PB System™.

Rodney K. Taylor

Rodney K. TaylorKeynote Speaker

Director, Food and Nutrition Services, Fairfax County Public Schools

Rodney Taylor’s leadership journey spans 30 years in education beginning in 1991 as the Food Services Director for San Mateo Union High School District/ Compton Unified School District, while most recently retiring as Food and Nutrition Services Director, for the Fairfax County Public Schools in Virginia, the 10th largest school in the United States.
Mr. Taylor takes a vision and makes it reality through sound strategy development. He inspires innovative ideas and concepts, and provides avenues to ensure change is managed effectively. He is an inspirational leader who tells stories that inspire action while at the same time ensures that stakeholders remain engaged in the process and are well-supported when change impacts their daily lives. He believes open and honest communication is essential to maintaining support for the strategy. As a seasoned consultant, Rodney has provided organizations in the public and private sectors with practical strategies that enable change management as an enterprise business capability. Respected as a credible voice in decision making, strategic thinking, innovation, and establishing governance boundaries.

Rodney has served on numerous boards such as the California State Board of Food and Agriculture, the University of California (UC0 President’s Advisory Commission for Agriculture and Natural Resources, and the Network for a Healthy California’s Executive Committee.

Rodney holds a Bachelor of Science in Public Administration from California State University, Dominguez Hills.