LAEDC is effective because of the leadership of our members.  Please take a moment to meet the individuals below!

LAEDC Chair

Dr. Dianne F. Harrison, President, CSUN

Dr. Dianne F. Harrison will be the first academic leader elected to serve as Chair of LAEDC, at a time when understanding and preparing for the changing face of work is an increasing priority for the organization and its education, government and private sector members, especially with LAEDC’s ideation and launch of the Center for a Competitive Workforce with LA County’s 19 community colleges, the Los Angeles Orange County Regional Consortia, and the LA Area Chamber of Commerce.  As one of the founders of the “CSU5” collaboration of the five Cal State Universities in LA County, Dr. Harrison rallied support for providing funding, alongside many private sector and philanthropic organizations, for the implementation of the LA County Strategic Plan for Economic Development (2016-2020), which became Propel LA, located at the LAEDC.  Dr. Harrison has also been a vocal promoter of the role of innovation in our economy and in talent development, through CSUN investments in technology incubation.  Dr. Harrison is also known for her strong commitment to community and for building strong partnerships with public-, nonprofit- and private- sector organizations, which fits the LAEDC’s collaborative economic development approach. Dr. Harrison began her appointment as president of CSUN in June 2012. Prior to CSUN, Dr. Harrison served as president of California State University, Monterey Bay, and prior to that she worked at Florida State University.

LAEDC Vice Chair

Steven A. Nissen, President and CEO, Nissen Consulting Group

Steve Nissen is the President and CEO of Nissen Consulting Group and incoming Chair of the Los Angeles Economic Development Corporation for 2020-21. For the past 12 years until his retirement from NBCUniversal in January 2020, Steve Nissen has been responsible for state and local government affairs for the Company, from intellectual property protection, First Amendment and film production to land use and government compliance. Mr. Nissen was the 2017 Chair of the Los Angeles Area Chamber of Commerce, and past Chair of the Central City Association, FilmLA and the L.A. BioMed (now known as the Lundquist Institute). Nissen also is one of 9 Board Members of one of California’s largest charitable foundations, the Ralph M. Parsons Foundation. He has also served on the Executive Committees of the L.A. Police Foundation and Valley Industries and Commerce Association and is a Board Member of the Metropolitan YMCA. Prior to NBCUniversal, Mr. Nissen was a partner in the national law firm of Manatt, Phelps & Phillips, representing a wide range of clients, from Fortune 500 companies to nonprofit entities. From 1999-2002, Nissen was a senior official with California Governor Gray Davis. Nissen served as the Governor’s Interim Staff Director, as Director of the Governor’s Office of Planning and Research, and as Senior Special Assistant for Innovation in Government. Among other tasks, he served as the Governor’s liaison to the Blue Ribbon Panel on Hate Groups, chaired by former Secretary of State Warren Christopher and former California Governor George Deukmejian. Before joining Governor Davis’ staff, Nissen was CEO of the State Bar of California, then the largest private regulatory body in the nation. He took charge in the midst of a political crisis triggered by a veto of the legislation to fund the Bar. He worked closely with then Governor Pete Wilson’s office, the California Legislature and the state Supreme Court to restore funding to the State Bar while at the same time streamlining the organization’s multiple functions. Prior to that, Nissen was President of Public Counsel Law Center, which he built into the country’s largest pro bono law firm. Under his leadership, Public Counsel grew to a staff of some 50 dedicated individuals and a cadre of 10,000 volunteer attorneys providing over $200 million worth of legal services to children, the elderly, low-income families, and nonprofit organizations. During his tenure at Public Counsel, he was also an adjunct professor at USC School of Law. He has maintained his commitment to legal services to the indigent by serving as Co-Chair of the California State Bar Legal Services Trust Fund Commission and Standing Committee member of the American Bar Association Pro Bono and Public Service Committee.

Immediate Past Chair

Eric Rowen, Principal Shareholder, Greenberg Traurig LLP

Eric Rowen focuses his practice on litigation involving real estate, real estate financing, commercial real estate leasing, real estate related bankruptcies, and trusts holding vast real estate assets. Mr. Rowen has tremendous experience with litigation and pre-litigation counseling involving securitized loan portfolios, bond financings, loan and loan portfolio workouts and restructurings, construction financing, partnership and joint venture disputes, complex eminent domain, lease disputes, entitlements (including CEQA), title issues, title insurance, and real property related environmental matters (such as federal and state superfund and private cost recovery actions). He has extensive bench and jury trial, law and motion and deposition experience in matters handled by federal (including bankruptcy), state, and appellate courts, and via arbitration and other alternative dispute resolution arenas.

Past LAEDC Chairs include

 

2019/2019 Eric Rowen, Principal Shareholder, Greenberg Traurig LLP

2017/2018   Jodie Lesh, SVP, National Delivery System Strategy, Planning and Design at Kaiser Permanente

2016/2017   Chris Martin, CEO and Chairman of AC Martin and Martin Project Management

2015/2016   Praful Kulkarni, founding partner of gkk works

2014/2015   Raul A. Anaya, President, Bank of America – Greater Los Angeles Region

2013/2014   Lew Horne, President, CBRE Inc., Greater Los Angeles and Orange County Region

2012/ 2013   Christopher Carey, Chief Financial Officer, City National Bank

2011/ 2012   Robert Hertzberg, California State Senator and former Speaker of the California State Assembly

2010/2011   Maura O’Connor, O’Connor Cochran LLP

2009/2010   Lloyd Greif, USC Lloyd Greif Center for Entrepreneurial Studies