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March 8, 2022


March is Women’s History Month. To celebrate, we are highlighting a few of the women who are leaders in San Diego’s priority sectors. These seven priority sectors are grouped industries based on economic research that provide at least 10,000 positions in the 72 priority jobs. Join us as we celebrate the leadership of women in our community! 

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Advanced Manufacturing: Connie Lundgren 

Connie Lundgren, a Cal Poly San Luis Obispo and California Western School of law graduate, currently serves as human resources director, workforce relations at General Dynamics NASSCO. General Dynamics NASSCO has been designing and building ships in San Diego’s industrial corridor since 1960 and is the only full-service shipyard on the West Coast of the United States. Lundgren recently joined the Workforce Partnership’s Workforce Development Board.

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Image C/O MiraCosta College

Education and Human Development: Dr. Sunita “Sunny” Cooke 

Dr. Sunita “Sunny” Cooke began her tenure as the superintendent/president of MiraCosta College in 2015 and has been a CA community college CEO for 15 years. Dr. Cooke has led statewide transformations in workforce development in TX and CA and serves on several national leadership boards. She is an active member of the greater San Diego community including the San Diego Regional EDC and its Inclusive Economic Development efforts, Biocom, and the San Diego and Imperial Counties Regional Strong Workforce Program Oversight Committee. She was honored with national awards including Pacific Region CEO of the year and the Shirley B Gordon award from PTK Honor Society. 

Image C/O San Diego Union Tribune

Energy, Construction & Utilities: Carol Kim 

Carol Kim currently serves as business manager for the San Diego County Building & Construction Trades Council (SDCBCT) and the CEO of the San Diego County Building Trades Council Family Housing Corporation. The SDCBCT is made up of 22 unions representing over 30,000 workers in San Diego County. She currently serves on the boards of the State Building and Construction Trades Council of California, the San Diego & Imperial Counties Labor Council, the San Diego Convention Center and the San Diego Workforce Partnership. 

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Image C/O San Ysidro Health

Healthcare: Veronica Dela Rosa

Veronica Dela Rosa has spent over 25 years in the healthcare industry and currently serves as the executive vice president of operations at San Ysidro Health. As executive vice president of operations for San Ysidro Health, Dela Rosa leads the organization with key strategic oversight of clinic operations, information technology, population health and performance excellence, compliance, human resources, and diversity equity and inclusion initiatives. 

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Image C/O San Diego Foundation

Information & Communication Technologies (ICT) and Digital Media: Gisele Bonitz  

Gisele Bonitz is a former captain in the United States Navy and commanding officer of Space and Naval Warfare Systems Center Pacific. Now she serves as the senior strategic risk and controls program manager at Intel Corp. In this role, Bonitz leads teams to implement new solutions and identify emerging risks based on evolving technologies, markets and ecosystem. She also serves as a board member for the San Diego Foundation.  

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Image C/O Illumina

Life Sciences & Biotechnology: Sue Siegel  

Sue Siegel is currently on the Board of Directors for Illumina. Illumina is a biotechnology company focused on studying genomics to transform human health. Most recently, Siegel served as GE’s Chief Innovation Officer and CEO of GE Ventures. She also led strategy planning and oversaw the global marketing function. Before joining GE, she was a Silicon Valley-based healthcare and life sciences venture capitalist.

Image C/O City of San Diego

Public Administration: Council President Pro Team Monica Montgomery Steppe 

Monica Montgomery Steppe has worked to improve the quality of life for all San Diegans, beginning through the ACLU of San Diego & Imperial Counties as a criminal justice advocate and continuing through her advocacy in City Hall. Currently representing District 4 on the San Diego City Council, Montgomery Steppe has focused on creating equity and justice throughout the City, including championing the Office of Race and Equity, the Commission on Police Practices Implementation Ordinance, and securing infrastructure funds for historically under-resourced communities. In addition to serving on several committees, she is also chair of the Workforce Partnership Policy Board.

These are just a handful of the countless women paving the way in San Diego. Who are you celebrating this month? Share with us on Twitter.

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