PREMIER SERVICE: Burbank Welcomes Arrival of New Economic Development Pro

Last week, the City of Burbank welcomed newly appointed Assistant Community Development Director for Business and Economic Development Simone McFarland to its workforce. She brings 25 years of experience in creating business development and marketing programs in both the public and private sectors.

Before arriving in Burbank, Simone served as the Economic Development Manager for the City of Sierra Vista, Arizona where she established a robust ED program, including spearheading the creation of a cybersecurity hub that is positioned to flourish for years to come. Not new to California, Simone has also invested her economic development prowess in the Cities of Riverside and Murrieta, as well as the County of San Bernardino.

Simone has received ten Addy awards from the American Advertising Federation and five awards from the California Association of Local Economic Development. She holds a Bachelor’s degree from the University of California, Riverside.

Teri Black observed, “Burbank is on the brink of a remarkable transformation and Simone is just the right person to lead the excitement around economic development. She’s also a great match for the department’s leadership team, and it’s a city that will take advantage of her full range of talents for years to come.”

Welcome back to Cali, Simone!

POWERFUL RESULTS: Sergio Ramirez named Deputy Director of Economic & Property Development in Long Beach

Sergio Ramirez is now Deputy Director of Economic & Property Development in Long Beach. Previously, Sergio spent 12 years with the City of Anaheim, most recently as a Senior Project Manager, where he had the chance to be involved in many of the high-profile hotel, retail, mixed-use, residential and sport facility projects over last few years.

Sergio brings a ton of energy to Long Beach along with his incredible economic development smarts. He’s passionate about his field and takes great pride in making a difference. Given his awesome track record, we know he’s going to totally rock it in Long Beach!

He holds an MPA from California State University at Los Angeles and a Bachelor’s degree in Urban and Regional Planning from Cal Poly Pomona. Way to go Sergio!

STELLAR TALENT: Long Beach has a new Director of Economic & Property Development

No better way to finish 2016 and ring in the new year…John Keisler is the new Director of Economic & Property Development in Long Beach, CA. John has been with the city for more than 11 years and has served in a variety of management positions for nearly a decade. City Manager Patrick H. West stated, “John is a proven, dynamic and innovative leader who will help improve Long Beach’s economic vitality.”

According to TB&Co. CEO Teri Black, he already has a jumpstart on making an even bigger difference in Long Beach. Since May 2015, John has served as the city’s Innovation Team Director. Previously, he served as CFO for the Long Beach Police Department as was the Business Operations Manager for the Department of Parks, Recreation and Marine before then. John has a reputation for taking on challenging situations and transforming them into high performing operations. Teri added, “John is one of those rare individuals you meet and, in the first few minutes, you just know they will be a rock star someday.” Having had her eye on this fellow Trojan for many years, Teri and her team were delighted to have been part of his career path as he steps into the leagues of executive management.

John holds an MPA from the University of Southern California and Bachelor’s degrees in Philosophy and Religion from St. Olaf College in Minnesota. #fighton

STELLAR TALENT: Carlsbad Names New Economic Development Manager

The City of Carlsbad has selected Christie Marcella to serve as its new Economic Development Manager. Christie was chosen to lead the city’s economic development efforts after a robust recruitment that drew a large pool of qualified applicants from throughout the western United States. Her passion for innovation and relentless spirit of public service, along with her varied experience in economic development and related areas were overwhelming factors in her appointment. In addition, Christie’s impressive academic credentials include a Bachelor’s degree in International Affairs from The George Washington University and a Master’s in Urban Planning from Columbia University.