José Corona

Director of Equity & Strategic Partnerships, City of Oakland Mayor's Office

Oakland, CA

Accelerate Collaboration, Prioritize Equity  |  Community Economic Development, Funding / Investment, Local Government, Technical Assistance

José uses local government as a vehicle to foster equitable opportunities to benefit the people of Oakland.

José is the Director of Equity and Strategic Partnerships under Oakland Mayor Libby Schaaf. In this role, José serves as senior advisor to the Mayor, with the responsibility of creating, coordinating, and facilitating public/private/ philanthropic partnerships that foster equitable opportunities and benefits for the people of Oakland.

Prior to joining the Mayor’s Office, José served as Chief Executive Officer of Inner City Advisors (ICA) from 2004 to 2015. He led ICA to becoming a nationally recognized, award-winning organization for its work on scaling small businesses and entrepreneurs as a way to create Good Jobs, especially for people with highest need. In the ten years with ICA, he oversaw a portfolio of companies that created over 5,000 jobs, creating over $150 million in wealth for local residents and collectively generating almost $200 million in revenue. He also created a platform for hundreds of professionals to participate by contributing over $25 million of total pro bono investments into the ICA mission.His innovative thinking led ICA to launching Fund Good Jobs – an investment fund focused on using capital to influence the creation and retention of quality jobs – and the Talent Management Group – an innovative approach that is reshaping the workforce development sector.

José has built a reputation as a visionary leader, strong manager, innovator and relationship-builder who builds mindful and creative organizational cultures that yield high impact and results. Jose is passionate about promoting a fundamental change in the way communities and all its residents benefit from economic development efforts. He is a leader that has convened public, private and community people and resources to solve many community and business problems.

José serves on the Board of several organizations including Fund Good Jobs, Net Impact, SPUR Oakland and the YMCA of The East Bay. He holds a Bachelor of Science degree from UC Davis, and Entrepreneur Management Development Certification from the UCLA Anderson School of Management.


  • José’s innovative thinking led ICA to launch Fund Good Jobs (FGJ), where he serves as a director of the board. FGJ has developed a model that acts as a hybrid banking/venture capital investor with a good jobs impact twist.
  • José also led the development of ICA’s Talent Management Initiative, which creates a clear linkage between employers and employees looking for good jobs; 67% of ICA companies hired people with barriers to employment and 52% of ICA companies are owned by people of color.
  • In 2013 alone, he led ICA companies – of whom 59% are women-owned, and 48% are minority-owned – to create almost 3,000 jobs and generate $93 million in wealth for local residents. So far in 2014, ICA created and retained 2,717 jobs in the SF Bay Area.
  • The average job at an ICA company pays $14.50/hour, offers benefits and a career ladder (opportunities for upward mobility).