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Barbara Elizabeth Baran

Barbara Elizabeth Baran

Co-Director, California EDGE Coalition

Barbara Baran has over thirty years’ experience in workforce development as an academic, senior administrator, and national consultant. For twelve years, she was a partner and owner of the national consulting firm, Workforce Learning Strategies (WLS). WLS customers included the Ford Foundation, Rockefeller Foundation, U.S. Department of Labor, Microsoft Corporation, National Association of Manufacturers, National Fund for Workforce Solutions, as well as states, non-profits, unions, and economic development organizations. Prior to forming WLS, she served for ten years as Vice President of the Industrial Services Program and then its successor organization, the Corporation for Business, Work, and Learning (CBWL) in Massachusetts, where she oversaw a budget of $80 million. Barbara served as Associate Director of the California Budget Project and then was a CBP senior fellow. She was a founding member of the California EDGE Coalition - a coalition of business, labor, social justice, education and workforce organizations focused on closing the skills gap in California. She now co-directs the activities of the EDGE Coalition. She holds a Ph.D. and M.A. from the University of California, Berkeley and a B.A. from the University of Wisconsin at Madison.

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The Opportunity
For community colleges to become essential catalysts to California’s economic recovery and jobs creation at the local, regional and state levels.

The Strategy
Doing What MATTERS for jobs and the economy is a four-pronged framework to respond to the call of our nation, state, and regions to close the skills gap. The four prongs are:

  • Give Priority for Jobs and the Economy
  • Make Room for Jobs and the Economy
  • Promote Student Success
  • Innovate for Jobs and the Economy
California Community Colleges Chancellor's Office