Leadership announcement: Sean Daniel Murphy is moving on from his position as CEO. 

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Sean is moving on from his position as CEO. 

With tremendous gratitude for his twelve years of service and leadership, ICA Fund Good Jobs announces a leadership transition: Sean Daniel Murphy is moving on from his role as Chief Executive Officer.

For his entire career, Sean has tirelessly promoted economic freedom by developing disruptive, innovative, and scalable tools that help small business owners grow their businesses, create good jobs, and help employees build new wealth.

After joining Inner City Advisors as a volunteer in 2007, Sean first served as portfolio manager then Chief Operating Officer. In 2013 he founded Fund Good Jobs, one of the country's first nonprofit impact investing funds. In 2016, Sean was selected as the CEO of the combined ICA Fund Good Jobs.

Driven by his philosophy of betting on people who bet on people, Sean has built a dedicated, cross-functional team with extensive experience working with small businesses at various stages of growth. His enduring commitment has grown the organization to national recognition.

“I know that it is time for me to move on but I have so much gratitude for the years I have spent with ICA Fund Good Jobs,” Murphy said. “The organization is stronger than ever, both programmatically and financially. I have complete confidence in the team and I look forward to the continued growth of the accelerator, our investments, and the mission under new leadership. I know that ICA Fund Good Jobs will continue to create wealth and make an impact for the entire region.”

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Sean has been a key architect of ICA Fund Good Jobs’ growth and community impact over the past twelve years. Some of his accomplishments at ICA Fund Good Jobs include:

  • Founding Fund Good Jobs – the country’s first and only investor explicitly committed to the creation of good jobs

  • Deploying over $3M directly to small businesses and empowering them to secure over $30M in additional capital.

  • Serving over 500 businesses and creating $1B in local wealth.

  • Creating over $13M in wages and 1,200 jobs in just the last year.

  • Launching the Good Jobs Accelerator – its companies have secured over $7.5M in capital since 2017.

  • Growing the organization from a team of two to more than ten and leading it to its strongest financial year ever in 2018.

  • Bringing the ICA Fund Good Jobs mission to a national stage and increased regional relevance by becoming a certified Community Development Financial Institution in 2016, building alliances with national partners, like SOCAP and OFN, and partnering with the City of San Jose to launch pilot programs in the South Bay. 

  • Growing the mission by being named to the San Francisco Business Times 40 Under 40 list in 2018, joining the Aspen Institute’s Quality Jobs Fellowship, and being featured in Entrepreneur MagazineForbes, and by the PBS Newshour.

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We are excited to see what Sean does next professionally and happy to share that Sean is not only working closely with the Board of Directors to manage the transition, but will formally join the ICA Fund Good Jobs Board once a new CEO is hired.

Sean has done a great job of positioning ICA Fund Good Jobs for the future. We are excited for him as he explores the next chapter in his successful mission-oriented career, and we are equally excited that we will still be able to benefit from his considerable skills and experience as a Board member.
— Jack Russi, ICA Fund Good Jobs Board of Directors Co-Chair

In the near term, Sean looks forward to working on new projects, is grateful for time spent with friends and family, and he remains passionately committed to impact investing, community development, and creating economic opportunity for those who need it most.

The Board of Directors is leading the search for a new CEO and is working with the executive search firm Korn Ferry to find an exceptional candidate. 

For the latest from ICA Fund Good Jobs, visit our News page and follow us on Instagram & Twitter

Dianna joins California Groundbreakers for a panel in Sacramento.

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Ahead of her trip to New York City to join the Confluence Philanthropy Practitioner’s Gathering, Direct of Acceleration, Dianna Tremblay joined a more local panel in our state’s capital.

On Wednesday, February 27th, Dianna and four other panelists talked about ways in which communities, municipalities and organizations like ICA Fund Good Jobs can work together to lift up small businesses run by people of color.

The hour-plus-long discussion was put on by California Groundbreakers, a group of local activists and leaders billing themselves as “a civic-engagement, community-focused organization putting together panels, interviews, discussions and events focused on cool people doing groundbreaking things”

Joining Dianna were:

  • Nicholas Haystings, executive director of Square Root Academy

  • Michael Jasso, Sacramento’s assistant city manager for innovation, economic development and community development

  • Mariah Lichtenstern, founding partner and managing director of DiverseCity Ventures

  • Tyrone Roderick Williams, director of Sacramento Promise Zone, and director of development for Sacramento Housing and Redevelopment Agency

A podcast recorded at the event is coming soon. You can follow California Groundbreakers here to make sure you’re the first to hear about it. And as always, follow ICA Fund Good Jobs on Twitter and Facebook.

Join us in NYC, find us at the For All Summit, and all the latest from our world.

ICA Fund Good Jobs at Confluence Philanthropy forum in New York City.

Dianna Tremblay, ICA Fund Good Jobs Director of Acceleration.

Dianna Tremblay, ICA Fund Good Jobs Director of Acceleration.

Next week, members of the ICA Fund Good Jobs team will be joining funders, investors, and nonprofit leaders from around the country at the 9th Annual Practitioners Forum in New York City. The gathering will focus on fostering a "critical dialogue around investment strategy and the tools available and needed to create positive change in the world." 

At the gathering, Director of Acceleration, Dianna Tremblay will join Rodney Foxworth, Amy Chung, Alexandra Aquino-Fike, and Ivy Jack on a panel, titled "Becoming Better Allies: A Workshop Racial Equity and Inclusion".

The panel is designed to create a dialogue about the ways in which capital providers and philanthropists can build better partnerships with companies owned by people of color, and is organized by the NIA Community Foundation and Rockefeller Philanthropy Advisors. Dianna's panel kicks is Thursday, while the conference kicks off on Monday. 

Also at the gathering: Anand GiridharadasEdgar Villanueva, and ICA Fund Good Jobs friend and former colleague, Nina Robinson

Find the agenda here and register here.

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Join us at the #GPTW4ALL Summit in San Francisco.

Starting today, we'll be at the 2019 Great Place to Work For All Summit in San Francisco. Sean, Ingrid, and Kot will attend the For All summit and join leaders from across the country, from businesses big and small, to talk about how entrepreneurs can make their companies the best places to work for everyone. ICA Fund Good Jobs is a Certified Great Place to Work and we can't wait for the start of this year's summit. If you'd like to join, you can still register
 

Obama celebration features ICA Fund Good Jobs companies. 

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President Barack Obama was in town for the three-day My Brother's Keeper Conference in Oakland. The conference, held at the Scottish Rite Center, was aimed at creating better support systems for boys and young men of color, and was hosted by the Obama Foundation. 

ICA Fund Good Jobs CEO, Sean Daniel Murphy and Board member Jose Corona joined many from the ICA Fund God Jobs Community. 

What's more, the week's events featured many ICA Fund Good Jobs companies! The conference was catered by Accelerator company Red Door Catering, and featured portfolio companies Red Bay Coffee and Back to the Roots. The branding for the entire conference was crated by long-time advisors and creative partners, Oakland-based 510 Media.

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Save the Date for a marketing webinar on April 5th.

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Join us and our friends at Small Business Majority and Facebook as we navigate the funding landscape for entrepreneurs using Venturize to finance business growth. On April 5th, together we are hosting a webinar for all small business owners interested in raising capital. 

The webinar is titled "Expanding Your Business: Capital to Expand and Expanding Your Reach Using Facebook" and a register link is coming soon. Growing your business also means reaching your intended market so we will provide simple guidelines of how to use Facebook digital marketing content to reach new customers.

The Red Bay Coffee at the company’s roastery and warehouse. (photo courtesy Red Bay Coffee)

The Red Bay Coffee at the company’s roastery and warehouse. (photo courtesy Red Bay Coffee)

Red Bay Coffee celebrates five years! 

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Congratulations to the Red Bay Coffee team on celebrating their five year anniversary. The Oakland-based coffee roaster and ICA Fund Good Jobs investment company has been serving "beautiful coffee to the people" for half a decade, was recently featured in Sprudge, and has lots of exciting plans in the works. 

Find Red Bay and a least two other ICA Fund Good Jobs companies in Bon Appetit's new guide on shopping local in Oakland. The piece, "How to Spend a Big Fat Weekend in Oakland, California", has a great list of amazing black-owned businesses to patronize in our hometown.  

Kristin Richmond inducted to Alameda Co hall of Fame.

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Kristin Richmond, is CEO of ICA Fund Good Jobs alumni company, Revolution Foods, which she co-founded in 2006 with Kirsten Tobey. On March 30th, Kristin is being inducted into the Alameda County Women's Hall of Fame in the "Business & Professions" category. Kristin joins over 200 distinguished women from Alameda County that have been in inducted since 1993! 

Our good friends at Amalgamated Bank are hosting an event for women entrepreneurs. Join it here: The event will be a great opportunity for any woman-identifying leader who is using their enterprise to create social change. You can register here.

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Remembering aManda Greene. 


A community leader and friend passed this month.

aManda Greene's spirit burned bright in the fight for social justice, education reform, and youth empowerment, particularly in the support of young entrepreneurs as Co-Director of @YouthHUBOakland.

aManda was a leader and a friend, and she inspires us to work even harder to create an equitable society. She will be deeply deeply missed. 

For the latest from ICA Fund Good Jobs, follow us on Instagram & Twitter

Fund Good Jobs investment company, Back to the Roots announces Series C raise.

Alejandro Velez, co-founder of Back to the Roots on Yahoo! Finance’s Final Round TV show.

Alejandro Velez, co-founder of Back to the Roots on Yahoo! Finance’s Final Round TV show.

Oakland-based Back to the Roots last week announced that it had closed yet another funding round, this time a Series C round led by Central Garden & Pet and Blue Scorpion Investments.

The company was ICA Fund Good Jobs’ first investment back in 2015 and has seen considerable growth since then. Led by Alejandro Velez and Nikhil Arora the company, which makes aquaponic garden-kits, cereals and other ready-to-grow items under its mission of “undoing food” has now raised close to $20MM and foresees a lot of exciting opportunities in the coming year.

You can check out the official press release about the announcement below, watch Alejandro’s interview on Yahoo! Finance here, and check out the impact of all of our companies here.

Back to the Roots products are distributed in national retailers including The Home Depot, Target, Lowe's, Whole Foods, and the NYC Public School System where it helps feed 1.1M kids per day as the first organic cereal ever offered in US Public Schools. Fund Good Jobs was the company’s first investor and Back to the Roots was Fund Good Jobs’ first investment. Back to the Roots is based in Oakland.

Announcing our newest investment: Onigilly!

Onigilly, a rapidly growing healthy fast food restaurant chain, is the newest addition to the ICA Fund Good Jobs investment portfolio. The investment, a $300,000 convertible note, is the first underwritten by ICA Fund Good Jobs with capital sourced from JPMorgan Chase’s Entrepreneurs of Color Fund.

Onigilly is a fast-casual restaurant chain specializing in Japanese rice balls, called “onigiri.” Koji Kanematsu founded Onigilly in 2007, after noticing a lack of healthy, affordable food options in the United States.

above:    Dianna Tremblay, Aki Kanematsu, Sean Murphy, Caron Gugssa-Howard, and Koji Kanematsu at Onigilly's Palo Alto restaurant.

above: Dianna Tremblay, Aki Kanematsu, Sean Murphy, Caron Gugssa-Howard, and Koji Kanematsu at Onigilly's Palo Alto restaurant.

“In Japan, onigiri is everywhere,” says Kanematsu. “I used to eat it every day because it is convenient, healthy, and affordable. Our mission is to spread healthy fast food nationwide and to improve people’s diet lifestyle.”

This is a powerful opportunity to support business growth, the creation of accessible jobs, and the potential to build wealth for Onigilly employees in San Francisco and across the country
— Sean Daniel Murphy
above:    Koji Kanematsu, Sean Murphy, and Rasheed Mitchell.

above: Koji Kanematsu, Sean Murphy, and Rasheed Mitchell.

The company currently has four locations in San Francisco’s Financial District and recently opened a fifth location in Palo Alto.

“It’s been inspiring to watch Onigilly’s journey unfold over the years,” says Sean Daniel Murphy, CEO of ICA Fund Good Jobs. “We first met Koji, his wife Aki, and the Onigilly team through our partnership with La Cocina, the food business incubator in San Francisco. We have supported Onigilly through our Growth Strategies course led by Michael C. Bush, as well as well as through the Good Jobs Accelerator program led by Dianna Tremblay. Now, through the work of Investment Associate Rasheed Mitchell and key consultant Jonathan Mi, as well as the support of Investment Committee Chair, Jim Harris, we are proud to support Onigilly as investors.”

ICA Fund Good Jobs’ investment will allow the company to invest in machine operations and menu development before a Series A investment round and additional geographic expansion next year. According to Kanematsu, the eventual goal is to open 500 Onigilly restaurants in the United States.

above:    one of Onigilly's onigiri.

above: one of Onigilly's onigiri.

That kind of business growth means job growth as well. What started as a food cart is now a rapidly growing company with 35 employees. Kanematsu has worked with ICA Fund Good Jobs for years to scale his business and create a good jobs plan for his employees. He also wants to create opportunities for employees to share in the wealth created by the growing business.

“To grow, we need to spread a new food and food culture to our customers,” Kanematsu says. “That is very challenging, so our team members are very important. A system for treating them well will be Onigilly’s strength.”

The commitment to taking care of Onigilly’s employees is part of what makes this an attractive investment for ICA Fund Good Jobs.

“This is a powerful opportunity to support business growth, the creation of accessible jobs, and the potential to build wealth for Onigilly employees in San Francisco and across the country,” Murphy says.

ICA Fund Good Jobs invests in high potential businesses through tailored investments and hands on support. In early 2018, ICA Fund Good Jobs partnered with JPMorgan Chase’s Entrepreneurs of Color Fund, along with fellow Community Development Financial Institutions (CDFI) Working Solutions and Pacific Community Ventures. The Entrepreneurs of Color Fund provides capital to these community lenders so they can invest in the growth, profitability, and sustainability of companies owned by people of color in San Francisco. 

2018 – The Year in Good Jobs Headlines:

As 2018 wraps up, let’s look back on a busy year for our team and our companies. Here are some highlights from throughout 2018. 

Click on the text below the images to read the full stories.