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Visit Oakland

Clockwise from top left: Courtesy of Kapor Center for Social Impact; Courtesy of the Port of oakland; courtesy of goldieBlox The GoldieBlox Standard Engineer Debbie Sterling looked at the girls’ toys aisle—filled with pink princess dolls—and thought, Why can’t we encourage girls to build, the way we do boys? So a few years ago, she introduced GoldieBlox, construction toys aimed at girls, and set up her firm in Oakland. “GoldieBlox’s inventor culture fits well in Oakland,” Sterling says. “There are artists and engineers, all here working to create wonderful things.” Another important factor in the mix: “We’ve connected with a great set of kids. We learn a lot from the community.” goldieblox.com Shipping Out The sculptural cranes poised over the Port of Oakland are the city’s biggest landmarks, symbols of its roots and hardworking pride. The port got its modest but ambitious start in 1852, with three wooden wharves. In early 2016, the largest ship ever to dock at a U.S. port arrived, the first of six megaships that now rotate in and out of Oakland—one of only a few American ports that can receive vessels as massive as these. (For port tour info, see page 47.) T h e T o w n Business a progressive force Mitch Kapor thinks big picture. He co-founded Lotus Development Corporation in 1982 and helped start the Electronic Frontier Foundation, protector of digital civil liberties, in 1990. He’s now based in Oakland, where he runs Kapor Capital and invests in companies pursuing social good. He and his wife, Freada Kapor Klein, opened the Kapor Center for Social Impact in 2016 to increase the presence of underrepresented people in tech startups. Why Oakland? We foresaw Oakland becoming a new tech hub for the Bay Area, one that could reflect the diversity of its community. How is it different from other Bay Area cities? I think Oakland can do a much better job than what we’ve seen elsewhere in fostering an innovation economy that values diversity and creates companies whose impact benefits the local community. Oakland’s history has placed it on the cutting edge of social movements. Today there’s an opportunity to set an example for economic growth that doesn’t make us more unequal, but brings us together. How would you describe Oaklanders? “Resilience” is the word that comes to mind. Oakland’s working-class roots and progressive traditions run deep, yet there’s an appetite to embrace change. kaporcapital.com, kaporcenter.org 5 8 #o a k l a n d l o v e i t


Visit Oakland
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