It is the mission of the Oakland Private Industry Council, Inc. to provide accessible, high- quality training and employment services to local residents and employers.
The Passion Behind our Work…
We do our work because we truly believe in our community. We know how important it is to connect well-trained and qualified candidates with the right opportunities. We pride ourselves in serving as a "one-stop" shop, providing a full range of support services to people looking for work, and to the businesses that employ them.
Meet our New Executive Director
A native of the East Bay, Robin Raveneau was born in Oakland, and raised in both Oakland and Berkeley. She holds a Bachelor’s Degree in Interdisciplinary Studies from the California Institute of Integral Studies in San Francisco and has completed trainings on Restorative Justice practices. Robin is also a Certified Life Coach, ACSTH. Her 20 year history with the Oakland PIC began with her work as Executive Assistant to CEO Emerita, Gay Plair Cobb. Later, she would serve as the Workforce Services Director where she continued to develop a deep and thorough understanding of workforce programming, as well as nonprofit organizational development.
The notion of how we work has markedly changed, and we must reinvent ourselves and our approach to securing sustainable, livable wages and creating lives that allow space to think, be and grow. Robin’s compassion and her equity-driven orientation, together with her considerable experience provides the Oakland PIC with the kind of visionary leadership needed to navigate the new landscape that technology, “side–hustles” and other employment shifts have created.
Robin’s work background includes holding positions at UC Berkeley, the SEIU/UHW Education Fund, The San Francisco Bar Association, and Urban Habitat. In addition, she has done considerable work with formerly incarcerated people, including serving as the Women’s Reentry Coordinator in the San Francisco County Jail System, as co-facilitator of a Strength Circle for men released from prison after serving 30 years or more, and as a volunteer re-entry coordinator at San Quentin Prison where she worked with the KidCat program, that addressing the needs of juveniles with life sentences.
In addition, Robin has taken a few sabbaticals, traveling to Egypt and Ghana as part of a learning tour with Dr. Wade Nobles, and living in Granada, Spain for 3 months. This provided her with a key insights into her own ancestry, and a global perspective of social justice.
Because Robin has not only witnessed, but also experienced the trauma that people of color encounter every moment of every day, she is deeply committed to identifying, confronting and healing the impacts of the oppressive societal systems that continue to traumatize people of color. As a Black woman, she knows the struggle all too well. But she also knows the brilliance, rage, resilience, and heart of those in the struggle, and is committed to the healing of those who have been most impacted; the ones who have been hurt and set aside.
Founded in 1978 by Gay Plair Cobb, the Oakland Private Industry Council, Inc. has a history of innovation in workforce development. Our collaboration with the private industry councils of Richmond, and Alameda and Contra Costa counties resulted in the creation of an East Bay regional career center system. - EASTBAY Works, a consortium of One Stop centers serving clients throughout the two counties. We hold ourselves to high levels of accountability in maintaining this consortium with proven successes, yielding outstanding results for workers and businesses.
Since 1984, we have administered federally- and state-funded workforce development programs on behalf of the City of Oakland, first under the Job Training Partnership Act, and now under the Workforce Investment Act. The Oakland PIC has also been a pioneer in establishing innovative programs such as the Women-In-Skilled-Trades pre-apprenticeship training program in 1988, and the Cypress/Mandela pre-apprenticeship training program in 1993.
As a nonprofit 501(c)(3) organization,. we are rooted in our community. We celebrate the beautiful diversity of the City of Oakland and have been intentional about making sure that our Staff and all-volunteer Board reflect our City. The Board is comprised of representatives from the private sector, community-based organizations, labor, and local government agencies.