Private sector leader Tom Terrill to succeed Linda Best as CEO this summer
Following the unanimous endorsement of the Contra Costa Council Board of Directors at the April 19 board meeting, and approval earlier this month by the broader membership, the Concord-based Contra Costa Council has changed its name to the East Bay Leadership Council (EBLC). The new name reflects a broader geographic scope of the private-sector, public-policy organization and the influence of the Council as a whole. In recent years, the Council has adopted a regional approach in its task force work and public policy considerations, which suggested a logical extension down the I-680 corridor to the Tri-Valley, including the Amador, Livermore and San Ramon valleys.
Tom Terrill, a recognized private-sector leader in regional economic development and real estate development, has been named to succeed Linda Best as president and CEO of the Council. (He will also succeed Best as executive director of the Contra Costa Economic Partnership, the nonprofit arm of the Council and a coalition of business and government leaders dedicated to creating and retaining quality jobs in the region.) Best announced in February that she would retire this summer.
“We are pleased to welcome Tom Terrill in a new leadership role for the Council and the Economic Partnership,” said Council Chair Bob Brown. “As a respected associate, past Council chair and regional business leader, Tom has extensive experience in economic development and working with complex government/community development issues. We believe he is the best person to fill the large shoes that Linda Best leaves. We are fortunate to have such leaders in our region, and we thank Linda for her great dedication and contribution to regional vitality.”
Council Chair Brown appointed a Visioning Committee last July, chaired by 2012-2013 Council Chair David Bowlby, to consider a name change that reflected the Council’s regional orientation and to conduct outreach with community and business leaders in the Tri-Valley. Committee members met with Chamber of Commerce executives of Dublin, Pleasanton and Livermore, and the Innovation Tri-Valley Leadership Group. They also met with leaders of the Tri-Valley Business Council, which will now be formally integrated into the East Bay Leadership Council.
“We took a deliberative approach in our due diligence, and received a very warm response from Tri-Valley leaders, who agree that we have many issues in common, including transportation, workforce development, permit streamlining and CEQA reform,” said Brown. “We believe the region can benefit from our organizations working together on these important issues. With redistricting, we now share several elected representatives at state and federal levels.”
AJ Major, chairman of the Board of the Tri-Valley Business Council, stated, “The East Bay Leadership Council is a prestigious body, and we look forward to having this organization be the new base for initiatives previously undertaken by the Tri-Valley Business Council so that, together, we can realize an even greater future for our region and our communities.”
“We are very excited about working with the Council’s leadership and integrating with its task forces on the many issues we share,” said James Paxson, general manager of Hacienda, Pleasanton, and Tri-Valley Business Council board member.
About Tom Terrill and Linda Best
Tom Terrill has extensive experience in economic development and working with complex government/community development issues. He has owned his own investment development company since 1997, been in the commercial development industry for 35 years, and has worked extensively in both Contra Costa and Alameda Counties. He has also been very involved with both the Contra Costa Council and Contra Costa Economic Partnership for many years, serving in leadership positions, including chair, in the 1990s.
Terrill devotes significant time to volunteer and community activities. He recently served as a member of the Blue Ribbon Task Force on Long Range Fiscal Strategies for the City of Walnut Creek. He often teaches urban and real estate economics at Saint Mary’s College and guest lectures at the Fisher Center for Real Estate & Urban Economics at the Haas School of Business, UC Berkeley. A member of the Urban Land Institute, he has been involved with UrbanPlan, a course curriculum used in high schools and colleges. Terrill has also served as president of the Walnut Creek Education Foundation. He is a graduate of UC Berkeley with a degree in economics.
Linda Best has been Council president and CEO for nine years. She serves on the boards of John Muir Health, Opportunity Junction, and STAND! For Families Free of Violence. She was honored as “Woman of the Year for the 15th Assembly District” in 2011 and was named “one of the Bay Area’s most influential women in business” by the San Francisco Business Times in 2009 and 2010. Best says she will continue her interest in the work of the Council. She also looks forward to spending more time with family and on nonprofit boards on which she serves.
About the East Bay Leadership Council (formerly the Contra Costa Council): The Council, also referred to as the EBLC, is a private sector, public policy organization with a membership that includes business, nonprofit organizations, government, education and labor. The mission of the Council is to provide advocacy on public policy issues affecting the economic vitality and quality of life in the Greater East Bay region. For more information, see www.eastbayleadershipcouncil.com.