Date & Time 
Wednesday, April 14, 2010 - 8:05am
Event Description 

Can California businesses afford the cost of going green? Can they afford not to?

Date: Wednesday, April 14th
Time: 6:00 to 6:30PM reception; 6:30 to 7:45 panel discussion; 7:45-8:15 Audience Q&A.
Venue: Sutter Club 1220 9th Street, Sacramento, CA 95814 - the second oldest private club in California.

RSVP by clicking here.
$10 admission fee for all; free for current Saint Mary's College students.
ATTIRE: Standard (Collared Shirt & Slacks). However gentlemen guests are encouraged to wear coat and tie comparable attire for ladies. Jeans, T-Shirts or shorts are not permitted at anytime.

Questions? Email us at or call 925.631.4653.


Roger Akers, Managing Partner, Akers Capital, LLC (Venture Capital Group)
Jeffrey Koewler, Partner, Downey Brand Attorneys LLP
Steve Hibbs, Director of VSP Corporate Services, VSP Vision Care
Anthony Eggert, Energy Commissioner, CEC
Barbara Hayes, Executive Director, Sacramento Area Commerce and Trade Organization (SACTO)


Kenneth Munson
Senior Vice President, Inertia Engineering & Machine Works, Saint Mary's College Trans-Global Executive MBA Alumnus 2009


California's major initiatives for reducing climate change or greenhouse gas (GHG) emissions are outlined in Assembly Bill 32 (AB 32) which was signed into law in 2006, 2005 Executive Order and a 2004 ARB regulation to reduce passenger car GHG emissions. These efforts aim at reducing GHG emissions to 1990 levels by 2020 - a reduction of approximately 30 percent, and then an 80 percent reduction below 1990 levels by 2050.

The recently released study (July 2009), The Cost of AB 32 on California Small Businesses, commissioned by the California Small Business Roundtable, concluded that implementation of AB 32 could result in average annual losses of $182.6 billion in gross state output, from small businesses alone. That would translate to nearly 1.1 million lost jobs. The report also estimates a reduction of more than 25 percent in the average family's discretionary spending. Critics have downplayed the validity of this report, charging that it does not consider the potential economic benefits and savings to the state because of energy efficiency, "energy security," and technology industry stimulation. Indeed, over the long run, Californians may save money from more energy-efficient technologies and decreased needs for additional energy infrastructure.

Those results, however, might be a relatively long time in coming, and the value of the potential benefits may prove difficult, if not impossible, to estimate realistically. These points are especially relevant now, when small and large business are increasingly feeling the squeeze of a sluggish California economy and tightening credit. California's Global Warming Solutions Act (AB32) imposes implementation costs upfront. The payoffs may be slow and uncertain. On the other hand, they may also prove overwhelmingly beneficial to California's business communities in both the short and long term. That dynamic means that many small businesses could be even more at risk than they are now given the current state of California's economy; a state of affairs the California businesses may not be able to afford despite AB32's benefits.


In the interest of presenting a fair and open discussion, Saint Mary's College Graduate Business Alumni Chapter would like to present alternative industry viewpoints regarding AB 32's impact on the cost of doing business in California. It is not the intent of the College to bias the panelist or audience members in any way.

- ARB's own updated analysis which includes a review/commentary by a panel of economic experts
- A comparative analysis of all of different economic impact projections (including Varshney but not the most recent ARB) to provide some broader context
- Evaluations of the Varshney Small Business Report:
> Daydreams of Disaster: Report to the California Attorney General
> Review of Varshney/Tootelian Report "Cost Of AB 32 On California Small Businesses – Summary Report Of Findings"
> LAO review of Varshney studies
>A Review of Cost of AB 32 on California Small Businesses-Summary Report of Findings by Varshney & Associates
>Other articles...


Roger Akers
Managing Partner, Akers Capital, LLC (Venture Capital Group)
 Roger has over 20 years of experience in technology related environments. As an IT Services executive, Roger managed the development and delivery of large-scale software systems in over 80 client environments. Efforts included technical and management assignments for a national consulting firm (SCT), as well as the building of a regional IT consulting firm as Managing Partner (PRODATA Inc.). With a staff that ultimately grew to 430+, ProData provided management and technical IT consulting to public and private sector clients in the western US. Upon the successful merger of ProData with a large IT services firm, Roger developed a consulting firm (Akers-Waterman & Company) that provided management consulting to industry leaders such as Intel and Cisco Systems. In addition, Roger helped develop and worked with a number of technology companies.

In 1998, Roger co-founded Akers Capital LLC with partner Tom Loutzenheiser. After successfully raising Pac West Technology Fund I in 2000, Roger and the team have invested in, mentored and helped build emerging technology companies. His enjoyment and stimulation of working with the best teams possible has been Roger's primary motivating factor throughout his career. Managing projects, building companies and investing funds has provided significant experience and insight into the intricacies of technology based business development. Providing support through board-level participation, organizational development, marketing and sales channel development is his passion. Roger has undergraduate degrees in Accounting (CPA) and Computer Science and a Masters of Business Administration. He currently serves on the Boards of the Golden State Capital Network, the Emerging Technology Institute, University of California Connect, and sits on the Advisory Board for the Graduate School of Management at the University of California, Davis.

Jeffrey M. Koewler
Partner, Downey Brand Attorneys LLP
 Jeff Koewler is the Managing Partner of Downey Brand. He has extensive expertise in equity and debt offerings, mergers and acquisitions, lending transactions, and the formation of equity funds. Jeff also provides general counsel services to over 40 businesses, including start-up and emerging companies.

Jeff has represented numerous start-up companies and venture capital investors and investors in private offerings, most of which involved the issuance of preferred stock and the drafting and negotiation of stock purchase agreements, investors' rights and voting agreements, registration rights agreements, buy-sell agreements, as well as related documents. He has helped numerous private companies to prepare private placement memoranda, subscription packages, preferred stock offering documents, and other documents used to provide financing for emerging companies.
Jeff is a graduate of Georgetown University Law Center; Washington, D.C. (J.D., 1986) and the University of California, Berkeley; Berkeley, California (B.S., 1981).

Barbara Hayes
Executive Director, SACTO
 Barbara Hayes is the Executive Director of the Sacramento Area Commerce and Trade Organization (SACTO). As Executive Director, she is responsible for directing the 500 member-supported organization and its 2 million dollar budget and 10 staff. She facilitates the six-county region's economic development efforts by collaborating with local economic development partners, being active in the business community and marketing the Sacramento Region to businesses in an effort to create investment and jobs to ensure regional prosperity and global competitiveness.

Hayes represents the region through marketing and recruitment missions throughout the U.S. and overseas to attract quality business to the area and strengthen ties with companies already in the area. During her leadership of SACTO, the organization has been responsible for the successful location and expansion of high-profile companies including Jetblue Airways, Carquest, DeVry University Center, Oracle, Verizon Wireless, Polyclad Technologies, Affymetrix and the GAP Direct, to the Sacramento Region.

Prior to joining SACTO, Hayes held several positions within the California Trade and Commerce Agency. She served as the State Director of the California Small Business Development Center Program where she oversaw the operations of 24 small business development centers located across the State and was responsible for the administrative and policy development aspects of the program. Hayes also worked in the Agency's Office of Business Development where she provided site location assistance to businesses looking to locate in, or relocate within, California. Additionally, she worked in the Office of Local Development where she provided technical assistance to small businesses and local government officials in an effort to promote economic development activities within a specific geographic region of the State.

Hayes received her degree in International Relations and Economics from the University of California, Davis. She is a member of the International Economic Development Council, California Association for Local Economic Development, Industrial Asset Management Council and Corporate Real Estate Network (CORENET). She sits on the board of the Sacramento Workforce Investment Board, UC Davis InnovationAccess, and the UC Davis Research Park. Hayes is frequently asked to speak on behalf of the Sacramento business economy and serves as a regional spokesperson on a local, national and international stage. She was an honored recipient of the Sacramento Business Journal 2005 "Women Who Mean Business" Award.

Steve Hibbs
VSP Vision Care, Director of VSP Corporate Services
Steve Hibbs, Director of Corporate Services for VSP Vision Care, has 20 years experience with VSP, the nation's largest provider of eyecare wellness benefits. VSP is long-time advocate of environmental sustainability. One of VSP's core values is to support their community by "positively impacting their communities and environment in ways that truly make a difference in people's lives." Steve is responsible for VSP's Corporate Services Division, which includes facilities, purchasing and supplier management, distribution and mail services and safety and security. Under Steve's direction, VSP embarked on a journey to have their main headquarter building become LEED-EB platinum-level certified. At the time of certification, the building was the oldest platinum building certified by the USGBC and was one of only 14 buildings in the nation. This milestone was a starting point for VSP's ongoing efforts to become a model of energy and resource efficiency. Since certification, Steve's team has successfully received ENERGY STAR certification for all four buildings on the campus and are currently working towards LEED certification for the entire campus. Prior to his current role at VSP, Steve worked in the oil fields of Alaska learning why sustainability is important. He has been a board member of the Safety Center, Inc. since 2004.

Anthony Eggert
Energy Commissioner, CEC
Anthony Eggert was appointed as Commissioner to the California Energy Commission by Governor Arnold Schwarzenegger in January 2010 where he serves on the committees for energy efficiency, transportation, climate change, federal stimulus and eight power plan siting cases. Before his appointment to the Energy Commission, Eggert served for two years as Science and Technology Policy Advisor to Mary Nichols, Chair of the California Air Resources Board where he worked on implementing energy and environmental policy including the Global Warming Solutions Act (AB 32). In 2007 Eggert was advisor on energy and climate policy to the Office of Federal Governmental Relations for the University of California and the California Governor's office in Washington DC. From 2002 to 2006, Eggert was associate research director at the University of California, Davis Institute of Transportation Studies where he managed a $1 million research program investigating the technical, environmental, business, and policy issues associated with a transition to low-carbon fuels and vehicles. Eggert's professional career began in 1996 as a project engineer at the Ford Motor Company's Vehicle Environmental Engineering division, then as manager of Ford's California Fuel Cell Partnership office from 2001 until 2003.

Eggert also serves on the advisory board to the University of California Energy Institute at Haas and the Energy Efficiency Center at Davis. During his career he has presented at more than 50 national and international conferences, testified to Congress, and received recognition or scholarship from the National Academies, U.S. Department of Energy, U.S. Department of Transportation and National Science Foundation. Eggert holds a Master of Science in Transportation Technology and Policy from the University of California, Davis and a Bachelor of Science degree in Mechanical Engineering from the University of Wisconsin, Madison.

RSVP by clicking here.

Maps & Directories

Mailing Address

Saint Mary's College of California
1928 Saint Mary's Road
Moraga, CA 94575
(925) 631-4000
Google Map | Campus Map | PO Boxes