Emmett Carson: How To Create a Green Jobs Mecca

Emmett Carson: How To Create a Green Jobs Mecca

By Alison van Diggelen, host of Fresh Dialogues

Check out this audio-only version which captures Emmett Carson’s off-camera exuberance and humor.

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Last week, I sat down with Emmett Carson, President and CEO of the  Silicon Valley Community Foundation. In a wide ranging conversation on green jobs, the Obama White House, education and financial literacy, we focused in on the role of the $1.7 Billion Foundation in addressing the immediate job crisis in Silicon Valley. How should coalitions of green minded people come together to create a green jobs mecca in the Bay Area? How do you jump start a green jobs explosion? According to Emmett, it’s all about forging informed dialogues between powerful coalitions.

On Creating a Green Jobs Mecca

“There has to be a group of people who are going to make some strategic investments…There are coalitions of green folk who are already meeting… where government officials can help, where foundations folk can help and be attuned and listen to what they say they need and where there opportunities will be. So that you start to say to the community colleges, ‘here are the kinds of jobs to train people for.’ What are the jobs that are going to stay around for a ten year cycle? This is the more thoughtful, longer term thinking that we need all of our public leaders to engage in…if we’re really going to have that green jobs explosion.”

On Mayor Chuck Reed’s Green Vision
“I know this is high on Mayor Reed’s priority list and as you said, he points to a number of initiatives (Green Vision). He wants this to be the (green jobs) center but he can’t do it ALONE, he needs both the State in concert but he also needs real time dialogue with community colleges.”

Check back soon for other interview segments when Emmett Carson gives advice to President Obama, shares wisdom on merging two foundations and talks about the Foundation’s social media strategy and how its Facebook page is a vital part.

For more exclusive interviews with Paul Krugman, Tom Friedman and Martin Sheen, check out our interview list and the Fresh Dialogues YouTube Channel