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What's Happening Now

Meet John Boland, KQED Public Media

John Boland speaking at graduationEvery leader aspires to leave a legacy of success. John Boland, a member of the board of directors at Joint Venture Silicon Valley, has done just that at KQED. At a time when most regional news entities are struggling, Boland catapulted KQED from a traditional public broadcast outlet into a multimedia stronghold. The eldest of 12 and a college dropout, Boland served as President and CEO of KQED through March 2019, and is now president emeritus. 

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CBS News: San Jose has highest-paid workers

video image May 20, 2019 - Joint Venture CEO Russell Hancock says, "it's no surprise," when interviewed by CBS News on a new report that says the nation's highest paid workers are in San Jose. With an average annual median income of $117,000, “our numbers are skewed by people who are making obscene amounts of money. Silicon Valley is a place that has 50 billionaires,” Hancock said. “We’re spiraling upwards in terms of our costs, our housing, for everything,” Hancock said. “You see those costs rising faster than anywhere in the country. And it’s because the market can bear it.”

Watch the news clip

Russell Hancock on Tesla stock plunge

video image

May 20, 2019 - Russell Hancock, president and CEO of Joint Venture, was interviewed by CBS News when one Wall Street analyst issued a “code red” on Tesla for not meeting internal production goals and getting distracted in side ventures. Hancock says “I think shareholders are saying this product that is world changing, maybe now we need some adult supervision–doing the things that Detroit has done for a very long time.”

Watch the news clip

Institute Report: space under construction rivals dot com boom

black and white report cover May 3, 2019 – Joint Venture Silicon Valley’s Institute for Regional Studies has released its Q1 2019 report on Silicon Valley commercial space. The report shows that activity is brisk and demand is high, especially for commercial space located near public transit. Office vacancy rates – which were relatively high between Q4 2017 and Q4 2018 due – fell significantly in Q1 2019 to 13.4%.

Learn more | Read news release

Data Release: Silicon Valley sets pace for electric vehicle adoption 

Electric car May 15, 2019 - The Joint Venture Institute for Regional Studies today reported that Silicon Valley’s total number of registered electric vehicles (EVs) surpassed 80,000 in 2018, comprising nearly 20% of all such vehicles in California, and by far the highest numbers of any region per capita. Learn more

Joint Venture Food Rescue hits new milestone

150K pounds of food & 80K meals in 6 months

May 13, 2019 - Joint Venture’s food rescue initiative, A La Carte, has collected more than 150,000 pounds of prepared surplus food from universities and corporate food services...more than 80,000 meals for people who are food insecure. This spring A La Carte will purchase an additional truck. John A. Sobrato, Chairman Emeritus of Sobrato Development Companies, Sobrato Philanthropies, and a current member of Joint Venture’s board of directors, has donated $125,000 to the effort.

Learn more

Silicon Valley Indicators

indicators home page Did you know you can get comprehensive information and data about the economic and community health of Silicon Valley any time by visiting the online home of the Silicon Valley Index at

The site is maintained and constantly updated by Joint Venture's Silicon Valley Institute for Regional Studies and is a robust collection of charts and information with links to local, regional and national data sources, and resources for additional information within each of the indicator categories: People, Economy, Society, Place and Governance.

Download the 2019 Silicon Valley Index.

Investors Council Spotlight

Joint Venture's Investors Council welcomes dozens of public and private organizations and foundations supporting our initiatives and programs. Here are just a few of our many investors:

Crew SV logo Eastdil Secured logo University of California - Santa Cruz logo

Joint Venture offers a variety of support and sponsorship opportunities for individuals, corporations, and public sector organizations. To inquire about becoming a member of our Investors Council, call (408) 298-9330 or visit our Become an Investor page. To see our current investors, visit our investors pages.

What is Joint Venture Silicon Valley?

Established in 1993, Joint Venture brings together Silicon Valley’s established and emerging leaders—from business, government, academia, labor and the broader community—to spotlight issues and work toward innovative solutions. In this short video see what Silicon Valley leaders have to say about the organization.

A Visit with CEC Leadership

At our January CPC/SEEDZ quarterly meeting, hosted by Google, we were honored to be joined by Chair Robert Weisenmiller and Deputy Director of Energy Research and Development Laurie ten Hope of the California Energy Commission. In this newsletter, we highlight their visit and new opportunities for our region to play a leading role in achieving California’s aggressive energy and environmental goals.

In Silicon Valley, energy customers, solution providers, municipalities, institutions and utilities are deploying the nation’s most advanced ‘smart energy’ solutions at scale, defined by new levels of performance and sustainability.

As a recent example, the number of plug-in and battery electric vehicles in Silicon Valley has grown by nearly 700% in the past 18 months. EVs supplied by distributed renewable resources and/or the local grid offer dramatic efficiency and GHG benefits in our area versus conventional vehicles. Indeed, EVs and EV infrastructure have rapidly become integral elements in the smart energy network of the future.

As always, we welcome your questions and feedback about SEEDZ.

Thanks for your interest!

Don Bray,
SEEDZ Executive Director

What's New In This Issue:

• California Energy Commission Chair Weisenmiller Discusses State Energy Policy
• EPIC ‘Pre-Proposal Roundtables’ Scheduled
• EV Infrastructure Workshop Keys Formation of Interest Group
• Sunnyvale Community Solar Feasibility Study Released

What's New

CEC Chair Weisenmiller Discusses Evolving State Energy Policy

Commissioner Weisenmiller chairs a five-member commission that is responsible for overseeing California’s energy forecasting, research and development, renewable energy development, efficiency standards, transportation alternatives, contingency planning, and the Integrated Energy Policy Report.

In his wide-ranging remarks, he outlined the state’s current energy policy and goals, the status of AB 32 implementation, and the impending 2014 AB32 Scoping Plan Update. He described how the state’s progressive energy policies - past, present, and future - have helped drive California’s investment and leadership in areas such as energy efficiency, renewables, demand programs and transportation energy.

The state’s new Electric Program Investment Charge (EPIC) was adopted in 2012 by the California Public Utilities Commission to support development and deployment of next generation clean energy technologies. The mission of EPIC, said Weisenmiller, is to fill critical funding gaps in advancing technologies and solutions that provide California’s IOU ratepayers with “clean, affordable and reliable electricity and help enable the 21st century power grid.” Competitive solicitations for select funding initiatives will start being released early this year, he said.

Chair Weisenmiller’s presentation to the SEEDZ team

EPIC ‘Pre-Proposal Roundtables’ Scheduled

As noted by Chair Weisenmiller, several hundred million dollars in smart energy research and deployment grants are being made available under California’s new EPIC program in the coming months. SEEDZ is conducting a series of seven EPIC Pre-proposal Roundtables for interested SEEDZ participants during February and March.

The seven roundtables are organized by EPIC funding area: building energy efficiency, electric vehicles, demand response and customer-side storage, distributed generation, grid monitoring and DER integration, innovation cluster, and community and training.

The goals of the roundtables are to:

convene SEEDZ organizations interested in possibly pursuing EPIC grant funding in a given funding area.

review specific related initiatives as currently defined by the CEC.

engage in a group discussion of related experience, priorities, and possible proposal approaches and teaming roles.

help participants determine degree of fit and interest in teaming to pursue specific EPIC grant opportunities going forward.

EV Infrastructure Workshop Keys Interest Group Formation

In November, SEEDZ conducted an Electric Vehicle Infrastructure Workshop, hosted by Juniper Networks. More than 700 charging stations have been recently deployed by employers in the SEEDZ area, with many more installations planned.

The workshop featured SEEDZ survey results on EV infrastructure deployment trends, governance, and related challenges at ten local employers. In addition, experts from Google, SAP, ChargePoint, PG&E, GridScape, EPRI, Green Charge Networks and LBNL discussed opportunities and challenges for EV infrastructure from the perspective of the infrastructure hosting energy customer, EVSE network provider, system integrator and utility.

As an outgrowth of the workshop, the SEEDZ EV Infrastructure Interest Group was launched to help practitioners at local organizations establish and share best practices for EV infrastructure and expansion. At the group’s first meeting in January, attendees identified key issues and areas of focus. These included establishing a collective ‘rule of thumb’ for scaling targets and strategies, approaches for managing driver/user behavior, communications protocols, physical configuration and optimization, energy management approaches, EV parking policies and incentives, procurement/RFP processes, EVSE and cloud feature development and rate and/or penalty structures.

The next SEEDZ EV Infrastructure Interest Group is scheduled for Tuesday March 18th at NetApp. Please contact Lisa Bruner for more information if you are interested in attending.

Sunnyvale Community Solar Feasibility Study Released

At its November 26th meeting, the Sunnyvale City Council discussed staff recommendations on ways the City could help advance uptake of solar power within the community. This included programs for community engagement and volume purchase, and the possibility of constructing a large ‘shared’ solar array on city property to provide solar power to community subscribers.

Sunnyvale study cover

To support deployment of net-metered solar within the community, the City Council voted to participate in the American Solar Transformation Initiative's (ASTI) Solar Roadmap Project. Due to current siting and financial uncertainties, the council voted to hold off on constructing a community solar array for now, and opted to reach out to Santa Clara about possible collaboration on a community array.

Joint Venture SEEDZ, in association with Optony and RevGen Consulting, developed the supporting Sunnyvale Community Solar Array Development Feasibility Study, evaluating a range of critical regulatory, financial, and physical site considerations for community solar in Sunnyvale. The study reviews new options for deployment of shared solar resources under California’s recently-passed SB43 Green Tariff Shared Renewables (GTSR) program.

A CPUC rulemaking process is currently shaping the exact details of the SB43 GTSR program, with a final ruling due in July 2014. Rate structures and affinity models as detailed in the ruling will have a significant impact on the practical viability of community shared renewables for the immediate future.

The SEEDZ stakeholders meet regularly under the auspices of Joint Venture’s Climate Prosperity Council, co-chaired by San Jose Mayor Chuck Reed and Accenture Institute Executive Research Fellow Chris DiGiorgio. The council includes representatives from Google, EPRI, NetApp, Optony, PG&E, NASA Ames Research Center, Integral Group, Juniper Networks, Accenture, McCalmont Engineering, Microsoft, the Cities of Mountain View and Sunnyvale, and other leading Silicon Valley organizations.

Visit for more information.

How are we defining Smart Energy?

An integrated portfolio of new practices, standards and technologies for improved performance and sustainability in the generation, distribution and use of energy throughout the community.

For more information about SEEDZ, please contact:

Don Bray

Executive Director, SEEDZ
(408) 298-9338(408) 298-9338

Or visit us on the web at

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Joint Venture Silicon Valley provides analysis and action on issues affecting our region's economy and quality of life.

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In The News

May 23, 2019 - (Curbed San Francisco)Joint Venture Silicon Valley released its annual Silicon Valley Index and reported “for the third year in a row, people are moving out of Silicon Valley nearly as quickly as they are moving in.” More

May 20, 2019 - (CBS San Francisco) - Tesla Stock Plunges: for Russell Hancock, the president and CEO of Joint Venture Silicon Valley, the issue is the assembly line. More

May 20, 2019 - (CBS San Francisco) -New Report Shows San Jose Has Nation’s Highest-Paid Workers:“It’s no surprise,” said Russell Hancock, the CEO of Joint Venture Silicon Valley More

May 16, 2019 - (IWCE's Urgent Communications) -Jeff Lewis, director of the smart-region initiative for Joint Venture Silicon Valley, outlines the benefits that government entities can realize by coordinating communications initiatives More

May 16, 2019 - (Mercury News) - The Gary Dillabough Effect: Transforming downtown San Jose, 20 buildings at a time: Joint Venture board member Gary Dillabough profiled. More

May 10, 2019 - (Mercury News) - Bay Area wage growth slowing, but still among best in the nation: Russell Hancock, president of Joint Venture Silicon Valley, said he’s still bullish about the regional economy. More

May 8, 2019 - (San Jose Spotlight) - Tech leader Matt Mahan jumps into San Jose council race: serves as a board member of the Silicon Valley Leadership Group and Joint Venture Silicon Valley More

May 3, 2019 - (Silicon Valley Business Journal) -Silicon Valley real estate showed strength in the first quarter of the year with strong commercial demand, especially for space close to public transit, Joint Venture Silicon Valley reported... More

May 1, 2019 - (The Registry) - SiliconSage Homes CEO Sanjeev Acharya Joins the Joint Venture Silicon Valley Board of Directors More

April 25, 2019 - (Mercury News) - New Bay Area crown: Most expensive place in the world to build; “Another dubious award for the Bay Area,” said Russell Hancock, CEO of the non-partisan, regional think-tank Joint Venture Silicon Valley. More

April 22, 2019 - (Mercury News) - Bay Area paradox: We need housing, but we don’t want to build faster:  a recent study by Joint Venture Silicon Valley estimated the region is short as many as 108,000 homes and apartments. More

April 20, 2019 - (The Almanac) -Midpeninsula mayors, tech company transportation leaders convene to talk traffic: They were there to launch the "Manzanita Talks," a series of discussions convened by Joint Venture Silicon Valley More

April 16, 2019 - (KPIX 5) - Lawsuit Claims Apple Misled Hundreds Of Thousands Of Investors: “This is new territory for Apple,” said President and CEO of Joint Venture Silicon Valley Russ Hancock. More

April 12, 2019 - (Silicon Valley Business Journal) - Silicon Valley's 2019 Women of Influence award winners: Rachel Massaro, Vice President and Director of Research at Joint Venture Silicon Valley and Director of Research for the Silicon Valley Institute for Regional Studies. More

April 9, 2019 - (City Journal) - This year, Harris keynoted the Joint Venture Silicon Valley conference, and she is once again reaping large donations from tech and media giants. More