Meet The 2014 Santa Monica State Of The City Honorees Before Monday's Big Event

Friday, 24 Jan 2014, 8:58:00 AM

Brenton Garen

Cornerstone OnDemand CEO Adam Miller will be an Innovation Award recipient.
Courtesy photo
Cornerstone OnDemand CEO Adam Miller will be an Innovation Award recipient.

The Santa Monica Chamber of Commerce presents the 2014 State of the

City this Monday, Jan. 27 at a special location – under Cirque du

Soleil’s Grand Chapiteau (Big Top) next to the Santa Monica Pier.

Hear first-hand from the City Manager Rod Gould, Mayor Pam O’Connor,

and community leaders as they speak about the current state of Santa

Monica and what the future holds at the annual State of the City

breakfast networking and educational event.

Each year, this event brings together the business and resident

community and city government leaders to learn about initiatives

impacting the city.

The event’s focus this year is Global Visionaries and local leaders in Santa Monica.

Each year a committee of business and community leaders honor

individuals and organizations that have contributed to the economic

success of our city while demonstrating commitment to community

wellbeing through social, humanitarian, or environmental leadership.

This year’s Economic Excellence Award will be presented to Cirque du

Soleil, coming to Santa Monica for 30 years, this year with “Totem.”

The Community Excellence Award will be presented to retiring LA County Supervisor Zev Yaroslavsky.

Adam Miller, CEO of Cornerstone OnDemand, and Richard Chacker,

founder of Perry’s on the Beach, will each receive Innovation Awards.

Enjoy a delicious zero waste breakfast and networking opportunity

from 7 am to 8 am and the program, which will take place from 8 am to 9

am.

For more information, call 310.393.9825 or visit www.smchamber.com/SOTC.

Zev Yaroslavsky – LA County Supervisor (District 3)

Community Excellence Award Recipient

You’ll be receiving special recognition at the State of the City,

can you talk a little about what you have done to be recognized as a

leader and innovator in our community?

I suspect that this sort of honor is largely a recognition that I

have survived nearly four decades as an elected official in Los Angeles

County. I suppose that’s worth some recognition.

More seriously, I have devoted my public service career to serving

the people of the County of Los Angeles. Over the last 20 years, it has

been my privilege to represent the people of Santa Monica. The

partnership between the County and Santa Monica has been unprecedented.

The building of the Exposition Light Rail project, which will open to

Santa Monica in less than two years, will be the single most important

transportation improvement in our area since the building of the I-10

freeway half a century ago.

The refurbishment of the Santa Monica Courthouse and its jury room

has become the model for the rest of our court system. Promoting clean

water and clean beaches has served to protect and enhance on of this

region’s most important economic and environmental resources. These are

among the things that I would single out as the byproducts of the

County/Santa Monica partnership.

What do you think is important for local politicians to do to stay

ahead of the trends and maintain active engagement to build on success

or achievements?

Successful local politicians are those who keep their finger on the

pulse of their constituents; who are accessible to the broad spectrum of

stakeholders who make up a community; who can walk a mile in the shoes

of those petitioning their government; and who act wisely and decisively

in the interest of all the people.

I have been guided by an quote from the 19th Century British

historian, Lord Thomas Macaulay, who once wrote: “No man is fit to

govern great societies, who hesitates about disobliging the few who have

access to him for the many he will never see.”

Any politician who follows that adage will do well.

What does the Santa Monica Chamber and the City of Santa Monica need to do to move forward in the future?

The Chamber is a representative of business and commerce, but it has

to be more than that. A clean environment, a rational development plan,

and an effective transportation system are all in the best interests of

the economy of a city – especially one like Santa Monica. This city is

popular because of its location, its beauty and its livability. The City

and the Chamber must be partners in protecting those assets, which make

this place as attractive to business as it is.

Adam Miller – Cornerstone OnDemand CEO

Innovation Award Recipient

You’ll be receiving special recognition at the State of the

City, can you talk a little about what your company has done to be

recognized as a leader and innovator in our community?

When we launched Cornerstone more than 14 years ago, people

questioned our decision to bypass Silicon Valley and New York in favor

of starting a tech company in Santa Monica. But it’s turned out to have

been a great decision.

Not only has Cornerstone had the most successful tech exit in the

city’s history, but we are now considered one of the fastest growing

cloud software companies in the world, with a nearly $3 billion market

cap.

It’s exciting to see how the Los Angeles region – and Santa Monica in

particular – is quickly gaining ground as one of the fastest growing

technology hubs in the country, and we’re proud to be playing a leading

role in helping to bring further unity and awareness to this emerging

start-up ecosystem.

For example, we hosted the first annual LA Tech Summit last year,

which brought together 900 leading executives, entrepreneurs and

professionals in Santa Monica, and gave the community an opportunity to

shine the spotlight on why the region is a thriving center for

entrepreneurship and technology start-ups.

We also launched the Cornerstone Innovation Fund, a strategic

initiative created to invest in, advise and collaborate with promising

cloud start-ups in Los Angeles, as well as other technology communities

throughout the world.

What do you think is important for your company to do to stay

ahead of the trends and maintain active engagement to build on your

success or achievements?

At the heart of any company’s success, and ours in particular, are

its people. As Cornerstone continues to grow rapidly, it is important to

intentionally preserve our employee culture and start-up mentality;

otherwise, it will be inevitably lost.

Whether it is visiting our headquarters in the Water Garden or

meeting our team members at local events, you immediately get a sense of

what makes Cornerstone employees unique.

We’ve been able to sustain this through hyper-growth because, from

day one, we put the necessary architecture, processes, and programs in

place to support and measure our core values (Smart, Cool, Dependable,

Visionary) and drive a culture by design rather than default. This

culture has been a key to our success and innovation, and it’s something

we’ve been able to foster on a global scale.

What does the Santa Monica Chamber and the City of Santa Monica need to do to move forward in the future?

We should support the universities in the immediate area to help

develop the type of tech-centric talent that will be needed to propel

the ecosystem forward. It’s also important to attract further

funding/investment for Santa Monica and Los Angeles startups from both

inside and outside the region.

Finally, we need to continue to build on and support the positive

momentum this city has seen as a legitimate tech hub – whether it’s

building awareness through events like the LA Tech Summit, college job

fairs or community gatherings like the State of the City.

Richard Chacker – Perry’s Cafe & Rentals Founder

Innovation Award Recipient

You’ll be receiving special recognition at the State of the

City, can you talk a little about what you have done to be recognized

as a leader and innovator in our community?

Perry’s has really been all about change. We’ve been on the beach for

37 years as a major contributor to Santa Monica beach culture from

volleyball, outside seating, and across the board beach rentals – none

of these things were here when we started. We also have a massive

outreach program not only in the local community but the international

community. That outreach program we’ve overlapped with the CVB to bring

international guests and local guests to our community. Some of the new

innovations that we’re going to be bringing is adding a beautiful awning

enclosure to the 2400 location at the end of Hollister that will

enhance the ambiance and create a more comfortable year-round

destination.

The last thing as far as innovation goes, we’re working with the City

right now to create a beach shuttle that will pick up people from all

around the community, hotels etc, and bring them down to the beach and

then take them back to their point of origin and that will all be free.

We don’t really have anything that does that in the community. We

thought that would be a good innovative idea.

What do you think is important for your company to do to stay

ahead of the trends and maintain active engagement to build on your

success or achievements?

If your not innovative, then you quickly become passé. This is a

highly competitive world and competitive city we live in. Those who are

static fall behind. We’ve been a major contributor to the beach culture

for the whole time we’ve been there.

This may sound simplistic, but I’m a good listener and a good

observer as well. Most of the innovations that you see that we have has

come from either my world travels or listening to the locals, listening

to the hotels, listening to our visitors and what they are looking for

and what would bring them back.

What does the Santa Monica Chamber and the City of Santa Monica need to do to move forward in the future?

As a member of the Santa Monica Chamber, which is constituted of many

diverse types of businesses, and to keep the chamber vital and

relevant, we must maintain and enhance as many diverse types of

businesses. After that, we can increase those opinions.

That diversity will give our community a better chance at success.

The City has a much more complex charge: to find the symbiosis and

equilibrium of all competing interests. I think the City does an

exemplary job of soliciting as many different opinions when trying to

come up with the best recommendations and solutions. The City is in a

turbulent time torn between growth and development and what some see as

the degradation of the quality of life. The city at all costs much

maintain the quality of life that has for so many years been why we all

love Santa Monica so much. Watch, look and listen and good luck to the

City and to all of us because we all want what is best for the City.

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