The SFCED team helps businesses by confidentially providing free, comprehensive advice and fast-track access to the information, expertise and contacts needed to successfully establish and thrive in San Francisco and the Bay Area. We assist businesses in their strategy and location decisions by providing intelligence and contacts and support in navigating governmental organizations and incentives.
Executive Director, SFCED
As Executive Director of the San Francisco Center for Economic Development (SFCED), Dennis is responsible for managing the Center’s business attraction and retention programs, including the highly successful LatinSF, SFAsia, and ChinaSF initiatives. The San Francisco Center for Economic Development is a department of the San Francisco Chamber of Commerce Foundation.
The SFCED provides confidential, free, and comprehensive help for businesses seeking to locate or expand in San Francisco, connections to leaders who are driving the new economy, and access to information to help executives and their organizations make informed decisions. By working collaboratively with its investors and partners, including the Mayor’s Office of Economic and Workforce Development, the SFCED works to maintain San Francisco’s competitive edge as a global hub for innovation, entrepreneurship and opportunity.
Before joining the San Francisco Chamber of Commerce and the SFCED, Dennis spent more than 30 years in the commercial real estate industry. He was Executive Vice President and Chief Operating Officer of San Francisco’s Embarcadero Center, overseeing six office buildings, two hotels and more than 120 retail stores. As a regional director for Cushman & Wakefield, he was responsible for operations and management at Coca-Cola World Headquarters in Atlanta, Tenneco in Houston, and Bank of America World Headquarters when it was located in San Francisco.
In addition to his position at the SFCED, Dennis currently serves on the boards of Team California, Fashion Incubator San Francisco, Friends of the Film Commission, British American Business Council and the German American Chamber of Commerce Advisory Circle.
Dennis can be reached at email@example.com.
Darlene Chiu Bryant
Executive Director, ChinaSF
Darlene Chiu Bryant is Executive Director of ChinaSF, appointed by San Francisco Mayor Edwin Lee and tasked with stimulating economic growth and job creation through bilateral trade and investment between China and San Francisco.
Darlene has had a diverse career in both the public and private sectors, having spent a decade in international trade in the fine chemicals sector in Hong Kong before returning to her native San Francisco to work in communications and public affairs for Mayor Gavin Newsom, East West Bank, United Commercial Bank and Pacific Gas & Electric Company.
Darlene can be reached at firstname.lastname@example.org.
Fernando Franco joined the SFCED in 2014 as the Director of LatinSF to help strengthen business and trade between San Francisco and the Latin American region. He has over nine years of experience working with international business, global communications and marketing strategy development.
For the last three years he has focused specifically on helping Latin startups develop within the Bay Area/Silicon Valley ecosystem. Prior to his position with the SFCED, Fernando worked as the Trade and Investment Deputy Commissioner for ProMexico where he represented Mexico’s economic interests in Northern California by strengthening relationships with local government and foreign representations. Additionally, he has held positions with the State Government of Baja California and Valley Mexico University.
Fernando can be reached at email@example.com.
Vanessa Anthony is the Director of SFAsia, which aims to strengthen bilateral business and innovation ties between San Francisco and Asia, acting as a gateway to both markets.
She originally joined the San Francisco Center for Economic Development in 2016 as an Economist, leading the SFCED’s efforts in determining its contribution to the San Francisco economy, and identifying priority clusters in the Bay Area. Vanessa comes from a background in academia where she taught economics in the UK and was previously involved in business development roles. She is a member of the American Economic Association (AEA) and graduated top of class from City University, London.
Vanessa can be reached at firstname.lastname@example.org.
Manager, Intern Program & Administration, SFCED
Since 2010, Karen has been the Manager of SFCED’s Intern Program providing outreach, onboarding and mentoring support for 3-4 interns each quarter. Karen also provides administrative support for SFCED’s Executive Director.
As a Community Leader, Karen served as Saint Francis Memorial Hospital’s Auxiliary President for two years, President of the Bothin Burn Center Network for one year and was on Saint Francis Memorial Hospital’s Foundation Board for fourteen years.
Karen consults for the Volunteer Program at the Presidio Trust where she established program guidelines and best management practices for 22 supervisors. Today, she manages their Outreach Program by posting 35 intern positions per year, screening applications and tracking results.
Karen can be reached at email@example.com.
We could not do what we do without our talented interns. Each year, we offer skilled students and graduates from around the world the opportunity to gain practical work experience in the field of economic development, and receive a rare and invaluable education about the San Francisco business community. Learn more about our internship program.