Decisionmakers Conference 2011

Industry, government and organization leaders convened on April 26, 2011 at the Bay Planning Coalition’s 24th Annual Decisionmakers Conference at the Hilton Oakland Airport. They learned the who, what and how to:

  • Lift economic growth and Increase jobs
  • Create business efficiencies and foster innovation
  • Remove bureaucratic and financial barriers
  • Identify solutions for balancing economic growth with environmental protection, and
  • Unleash the promise of a sustainable San Francisco Bay




Rick Rhoads
President, Bay Planning Coalition

John A. Coleman
Executive Director, Bay Planning Coalition

Keynote Speaker(s): Setting the Context
Louis Stewart
Deputy Director, Innovation & Emerging Technology
State of California, Governor’s Office of Economic Development

What will it take to unleash the promise of the San Francisco Bay Delta region for lifting economic growth and achieving global competitiveness in trade and commerce balanced with sustaining a healthy natural environment?  The keynote speaker will address this question providing an overview of the conference theme, “The Economy in 3-D:  Jobs, Jobs, Jobs.”

Washington Update: Eric Sapirstein, President, ENS Resources, Inc.



The Role of San Francisco Bay in Sustaining the Economy and Emerging Opportunities for Innovation


Representatives from industry sectors present their plans for strengthening economic capacity in balance with protecting the natural environment and describe the regulatory and fiscal challenges to achieving these goals.

Moderator: Richard Sinkoff, Director – Environmental Programs and Planning, Port of Oakland

Speakers and Topics:

  • Labor: Willie Adams, International Secretary-Treasurer, ILWU
  • Transportation-Ferries: Nina Rannells, Executive Director, S.F. Bay Area Water Emergency Transportation Authority (WETA)
  • Waterfront industry: Jay Anast, President, California Dry Dock Solutions
  • Energy-Refineries: Guy Bjerke, Manager – Bay Area Region, Western States Petroleum Association
  • Real estate (residential and commercial office): David Smith, Senior Vice President, DMB Inc.
  • Water-Desalination: Stan Williams, Vice President – Project Development, Poseidon Water LLC

Response to Session II: Harmonizing the Environmental Permit Process in a New Era

A discussion of environmental regulations and proposed policies and their impact on S. F. Bay business and industry (e.g., Climate change: air emissions, AB 32, SB 375; and sea level rise, proposed BCDC Bay Plan Amendments; wetlands, proposed new SWRCB wetland regulations; endangered species: green sturgeon critical habitat, long fin smelt).

Representatives of state and federal agencies and industry representatives from Session II will discuss ideas for aligning government and industry to achieve a common vision for lifting economic growth. Specific ideas will be explored for permit process improvements to create a mutually supportive and efficient planning and environmental permitting framework for S.F. Bay projects.

Moderators: Louis Armstrong, Senior Vice President, URS Corporation, and Scott Warner, Principal Hydrogeologist & Vice President, AMEC Geomatrix, Inc.


  • Brian Baird, Assistant Secretary – Ocean and Coastal Policy, California Natural Resources Agency
  • Will Travis, Executive Director, S.F. Bay Conservation and Development Commission
  • LTC Torrey DiCiro, S.F. District Engineer, U.S. Army Corps of Engineers
  • Chris Yates, Deputy Regional Administrator, NOAA Fisheries

Introduction of New BPC Members

Frank C. Boerger Award Presentation

By Colonel William “Bill” Leady, Commander – South Pacific Division, U.S. Army Corps of Engineers

2011 Recipient: U.S. Representative John Garamendi

Frank C. Boerger was a founding director and chairman of the Bay Planning Coalition, 1985-1990. Mr. Boerger was a professional engineer, distinguished military man and respected civic leader, well known for his outstanding achievements in several Bay Area public and private non-profit institutions. BPC presents the Frank C. Boerger Award annually to an individual who appreciates the rigors of advocating environmental protection and economic progress, and forges the path to achieve both.


Winning the America’s Cup: The Bid, The Permitting, The Race


This session is a case study in a talk show format of a major project with significant economic benefit yet it faces challenges in the environmental regulatory process that could impede the timely completion of construction. The panel members will discuss the ingredients for winning and what it takes for this project’s success. The result should be a model for coalition-building and an-efficient and supportive environmental review and approval process.

Moderator: John Briscoe, Partner, Briscoe Ivester & Bazel LLP


  • Mark Buell, President, S.F. Recreation and Parks Commission; Chairman, S.F. America’s Cup Organizing Committee
  • Michael Martin, Project Director, Office of Economic and Workforce Development
  • CDR Thomas Stuhlreyer, Chief of Response, U.S. Coast Guard Sector San Francisco
  • Gary Oates, President, Environmental Science Associates
  • Scott Preston, Senior Project Manager, AECOM

The Long Term Management Strategy (LTMS) for Dredging: A New Day – A New Way?

This session, in talk show format, will discuss the need for a new direction for the LTMS. In the current budget climate, locally, state and nationwide, we must find new ways to conduct dredging and sediment reuse more efficiently and timely. Dredging policies and the regulatory process should foster innovative practices to deliver existing and new sites for the beneficial reuse of dredged material.

Moderator: Rick Rhoads, Vice President, Moffatt & Nichol


  • Dave Schoellhamer, Research Hydrologist, U.S.G.S.
  • Bridgette DeShields, Vice President and Principal Scientist, ARCADIS U.S., Inc.
  • Bill Dutra, CEO, The Dutra Group
  • Steve Hollister, City Manager, City of San Leandro
  • LTC Torrey DiCiro, S.F. District Engineer, U.S. Army Corps of Engineers
  • Sam Schuchat, Executive Officer, California State Coastal Conservancy
  • Dick Butler, Resources Manager, NOAA Fisheries
  • Alexis Strauss, Director, U.S. EPA, Region 9
  • Len Cardoza, Senior Technical Advisor, Weston Solutions
  • Steve Goldbeck, Program Director – Climate Change, S.F. Bay Conservation and Development Commission
  • Bruce Wolfe, Executive Officer, S.F. Bay Regional Water Quality Control Board
Wrap Up, Next Steps, and Adjourn to Reception