|Rick Hobbs, Board Chair
Director of Supply Management and Supplier Diversity
Southern California Gas Company
As Director of Supply Management and Supplier Diversity for Southern California Gas Company, Rick is solely focused on and responsible for the utility’s entire supply chain, which includes Procurement of Goods and Services, Warehousing and Logistics and Supplier Diversity. In the latter responsibility, Rick is responsible for increasing procurement with minority, women and service disabled veteran owned businesses in all aspects of utility and corporate operations. Rick is also responsible for the development and execution of capacity building and technical assistance programs designed to encourage small business growth. He is responsible for 150 supply chain employees. Rick joined SoCalGas in 1983. He has held positions of increasing responsibility in marketing, public affairs, strategic planning, customer service, energy efficiency program portfolio management and distribution operations. Most recently, Rick was the director of customer assistance where he was responsible for the development and deployment of programs to assist income eligible customers in paying, understanding, and managing their utility bills. He is a founding member of the Long Beach Heritage Foundation and a member of the Los Angeles Conservancy and the National Trust for Historic Preservation.
|Charles Harmon, Board Vice Chair
Senior Manager of Corporate Procurement and Corporate Services
American Honda Motor Co., Inc.
Charles A. Harmon is the Senior Manager of Corporate Procurement and Corporate Services for American Honda Motor Co., Inc. In his role as the company’s procurement officer, Harmon exercises total administrative responsibility in directing more than $2 billion of American Honda’s corporate spend to include oversight of all corporate purchasing operating activities including strategic planning, establishment of purchasing systems, financial planning, financial management, and administration in the assignment of responsibility for the procurement of goods, commodities and services. Harmon also continues to lead American Honda’s efforts to develop a diverse supply chain through his board appointments on the Institute of Supply Management – Supplier Diversity Group, Southern California Minority Supplier Development Council and the Orange County Hispanic Chamber of Commerce, as well as active participation in organizations such as the Greater Los Angeles African American Chamber of Commerce, American Indian Chamber of Commerce of California, Asian Business Association, The Latino Coalition and NMSDC.
|Monetta Stephens, Board Secretary
Supplier Diversity Manager
Toyota Motor Sales, U.S.A., Inc.
Monetta Stephens is the supplier diversity manager for Toyota Motor Sales (TMS), U.S.A., Inc. In support of Toyota’s 21st Century Diversity Strategy, Stephens is responsible for developing and implementing a comprehensive strategic-supplier diversity plan that ensures Toyota’s suppliers reflect the communities where Toyota does business throughout the U.S. She also developed and implemented the company’s metrics for tracking minority dollars spent. Stephens began her career with Toyota in 1986 as a tax accountant filing state income tax returns. She also held positions in financial repor ting, fixed asset accounting. Stephens holds an Associate Science degree in accounting from Fairmont State College in Fairmont, W.Va., and a Bachelor of Science degree in business from the University of Redlands in Redlands, Calif.
Southern California Minority Supplier Development Council
Virginia Gomez is president of Southern California Minority Supplier Development Council (SCMSDC), the largest nonprofit minority business advocacy organization in the region. She was appointed to this position in February 2012. As president, Gomez is responsible for leading council activities to strengthen its position as the the premiere organization strengthening economic ties between large, public-, private- and foreign-owned corporations and minority men- and women-owned business enterprises. This includes directing such activities as nationally recognized certification to minority-owned businesses, strategic networking between corporate members and certified firms, and education, information, and skills development to help minority businesses enhance their capacity. She previously served as SCMSDC vice president, where she assisted the council president in the organization’s day-to-day operations, including information technology, certification, and annual major events functions and supported council board committees. Prior to joining the council in 2001, she held several management positions at the City of Los Angeles Department of Water and Power (DWP), the nation’s largest municipally owned utility. Her experience at the utility included directing and overseeing contracting policies, budgetary, human resources, systems development/automation, and other administrative functions. As DWP contract compliance officer, she successfully led the development and implementation of the first supply chain management e-procurement system implemented among Los Angeles’ municipal agencies.
Blackstone Consulting, Inc.
A successful minority business entrepreneur and a new member of SCMSDC’s board of directors, Joe Blackstone is in a unique position to help guide the council’s activities to ensure its place as the preeminent minority business advocacy organization in Southern California. In 1991, Blackstone founded Blackstone Consulting Inc. (BCI), which has grown into a multi-million dollar service company in various service sectors. The Los Angeles-based company provides food, janitorial, facilities maintenance, security, staffing, and grounds and maintenance services. BCI employs people in 16 states and Germany, and has contracts with Sodexo USA, Northrop Grumman Corporation, government agencies, and more. In addition, BCI is a Corporate Plus member of the National Minority Supplier Development Council (NMSDC), a membership program for minority businesses with proven capability for national contracts. Blackstone received a bachelor’s degree in mechanical engineering from USC and an MBA from Southern Methodist University. He completed the Board of Directors Training with a certificate from the UCLA Anderson Business School and previously served on several boards, including USC Board of Governors, Los Angeles County Private Industry Council Board and was a member of Big Brothers of Greater Los Angeles.
Supplier Diversity and Development
Southern California Edison
Eric Fisher has over 25 years of Supply Chain Management experience with established Fortune 100 companies. His role in Supplier Diversity includes ensuring that SCE complies with all public law, as well as CPUC rules and regulations related to diverse business enterprise procurement practices. Before becoming a Principal Manager in Supplier Diversity, Eric worked for progressive Supply Chain organizations throughout his career with an additional emphasis on Supplier Diversity. He managed Supply Chain groups in the Category of Information Technology, Professional Services, Consulting and Contingent Labor. His wealth of knowledge has afforded him opportunities with SCE where he has worked cross functionally across the organization delivering successful sourcing initiatives achieving significant Prime and Subcontracting results for Diverse Business Enterprises. Eric is a certified sourcing and contract negotiator; he received his Master of Business Administration from the University of Redlands. Eric is very active in his community and many professional organizations, Eric sits on many boards where his leadership and strategic business acumen has afforded him the opportunity to network with many organizations where he has been able to pay it forward.
Socio-Economic Business Programs and Government Relations
Northrop Grumman Corporation
Vicky Harper-Hall manages the strategically important small business and socio-economic business programs for Northrop Grumman’s Aerospace Systems sector. In this position, she oversees all aspects of sector programs related to small, small disadvantaged, women-owned, historically underutilized, veteran-owned and service-disabled veteran-owned small business, and historically black colleges/universities and minority institutions programs. As part of helping ensure Northrop Grumman’s competitive position in the defense industry, Harper-Hall also guides the company’s work in surveying and assessing potential small business partners, and works to increase those partners’ participation in government and commercial contracts. Harper-Hall also provides guidance to small business liaison officers at Integrated Systems sites, maintains U.S. government customer approval of the small business program and master subcontracting plan, and executes procedures to ensure compliance with federal, state and corporate laws that govern the administration of the programs.
Vice President of International
Operations and Business Development
Technology Integration Group (TIG)
Ying McGuire is the Vice President of International Operations and Business Development at Technology Integration Group (TIG), a premier minority owned IT products, solutions and services provider based in San Diego, California with 24 offices in US, China, and a global partner network. In this role, she oversees TIG’s existing international operations and expansion of global business. She also leads TIG’s corporate business development and supplier diversity initiative. Prior to TIG, Ying was the Global Supplier Diversity Officer at Dell Inc. She was responsible for driving three billion dollar procurement spend with diverse suppliers and she was a leading voice in the supplier diversity industry. Ying holds a variety of community leadership role. She serves on an advisory board of the International Trade Center, a United Nation agency based in Switzerland, and is currently a board member of the Greater Austin Asian Chamber of Commerce. She also served as the board chair of the Southwest Minority Supplier Development Council in Texas, a global committee member of the Woman Business Enterprise National Council (WBENC), an International Committee member of the National Minority Supplier Development council (NMSDC), and a board member of the Billion Dollar Round Table. DiversityBusiness.com named Ying as an “America’s Top Diversity Advocate”. Minority Business USA recognized Ying as one of its “Best of The Decade”. DiversityPlus Magazine named Ying as a “Champion of Diversity”.
Supplier Diversity Liaison Officer
Jinus Moghbeli joined Amgen in 2003 as Senior Manager, Corporate Quality Systems, and was responsible for development and deployment of a global “Quality Management System” program. She also directed disposition and distribution of clinical and commercial products, overseeing the release of products at all Amgen sites. In 2007, she joined Global Strategic Sourcing and has worked in several different capacities, including managing the purification category (including resins and filters), design/ development of Supplier Relationship Management (SRM), responsibility for a sourcing Integration Management Office for mergers and acquisitions, and most recently taken on the role of Amgen’s Supplier Diversity Liaison Officer. Prior to joining Amgen, Jinus held a variety of progressive leadership roles at Baxter International. Directing Quality organization for material, plasma, fractionation and final product release was her last position at Baxter. She has a Bachelor of Science in Medical Technology from Towson State University, and MBA training from University of Baltimore. She is trained in Six Sigma (Black belt) and Quality Management and Process Consulting (Kepner -Tregoe).
Staff Vice President
Procurement and Accounts Payable
Mario joined Anthem (formerly WellPoint) in 2003. During his time at WellPoint Mario has had various roles including Sourcing Manager, Sourcing Director and most recently Procurement Operations and Accounts Payable Staff Vice President. In his current position Mario is responsible for Procurement Operations, Contracts Management, Procurement Technology, Analytics and Accounts Payable for the enterprise. Prior to WellPoint Mario was a manager at Accenture’s supply chain practice where he led Procurement engagements for clients in various industries including pharmaceutical, entertainment, healthcare, finance, and consumer goods. Before joining Accenture Mario worked for Southern California Edison where he was part of the Executive Development Program and had roles in the Procurement department and the Marketing team. Mario is a board member of the Southern California Minority Supplier Development Council and a member of the Ariba Technology Advisory Council.
Vice President of Community and Citizenship
Turner Construction Company
Michelle Smith-Ballard has 35 years of construction experience with the past fourteen years spent developing, administering, and monitoring diversity and small, minority, woman owned and disadvantaged business programs. She joined Turner in 1988 as a project accountant in the Los Angeles office where of her duties included reporting dollars spent with minority/women owned and disadvantaged businesses. In 1999, Michelle left Turner and joined Anschutz Entertainment Group (AEG) where, for a short time, she served as construction project analyst. After developing and presenting a comprehensive supplier diversity plan with an emphasis on increased spending with MBE/WBE/DBEs, Michelle was promoted as AEG’s Director of Procurement Equity and Supplier Diversity and remained in that capacity until 2007. Michelle rejoined Turner in February 2008 as Director of Community Affairs (now known as Community and Citizenship). She is responsible for administering Turner’s aggressive program which includes labor compliance, outreach, and MBE/WBE/DBE spend monitoring to ensure Turner’s 20% corporate goal is met in the Southern California business unit. Michelle coordinates and manages Turner School of Construction Management, an intense 7 week/ 15 session course that teaches MBE/WBE/DBE firms all aspects of construction. She also oversees Turner So Cal’s community involvement such as Youth Force 20/20, a national Turner program that seeks to inform and excite middle and high school students about the many careers in construction. This program administers Principal-for-a-Day, career days, the national program ACE Mentoring, and the Los Angeles Construction Career Awareness Day.
|Sanjay Kucheria, MBEIC Chair
Sanjay Kucheria is an entrepreneur and executive with over 20 years of experience, including strategy, general management, and business operations. He serves as the CEO of Trinus Corporation, an IT Professional Services firm that specializes in data analytics and financial performance management solutions. The firm has locations in the US and India and serves private sector companies, non-profits and government organizations, including leaders in healthcare, life sciences, entertainment, telecom, manufacturing, ports, utilities and technology. Sanjay is a member of the World Presidents’ Organization (YPO-WPO) and Chair of its Technology Network. He is chair of the Minority Business Enterprise Input Committee as well as member of board of directors of the Southern California Minority Business Development Council. He serves on the USC Viterbi School of Engineering’s Department of Computer Science Advisory Board. Sanjay has also served as President of The Indus Entrepreneurs (TiE) and board member of Society of Information Management (SIM). Sanjay continues to be a regular guest speaker at USC’s Marshall School of Business, and various business conferences. Sanjay has a B.E. degree in Computer Engineering from the University of Bombay and an M.S. degree in Computer Science from the University of Southern California. He has taken executive education courses at Harvard Business School, including the OPM program. Sanjay is married and has two children.