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WABA lays off exec, citing funding cuts

Submitted by on 1, February 1, 2011 – 12:03 am10 Comments

From the West Alameda Business Association website.

The West Alameda Business Association’s board has announced that they will lay off Executive Director Kathy Moehring as the result of ongoing reductions in city grant funding, a move they said they “deeply regret.” Moehring has run the association for four and a half years.

“The board sincerely thanks Kathy for her incredible dedication to the organization and her outstanding efforts to grow our West Alameda events such as the Webster Street Jam, Concerts at the Cove and the Farmers’
 Market,” a statement from the association’s board says.

The board began making cuts after the city began trimming the grants it pays out to the city’s business associations and changing the way the money could be used. And they’re anticipating that the funding – which covers about a third of the association’s budget – will ultimately disappear.

Mohering’s last day is February 15. Judi Friedman will stay with the organization, working as its director of operations.

“I’ve been pleased to have this opportunity to work with so many wonderful business owners and dedicated volunteers who work so hard to build partnerships and enhance the image of West Alameda. I live in, shop in, and am committed to the future of West Alameda,” Moehring said.

The board credited Moehring with significantly expanding the organization’s membership beyond the Webster Street corridor and enhancing the business district’s image. The release credits her with having initiated a fresh visioning process for Webster Street, expanding and relocating the Farmers’ Market, creating a seasonal banner program, rebranding the Webster Street Jam and fostering partnerships with a host of local businesses.

Moehring also helped bring new businesses to Webster Street and helped to facilitate a city program that helped businesses improve their façades, the release says.

Sandip Jariwala, vice president of WABA’s board and the owner of the Hawthorn Suites hotel on Webster Street, said Moehring worked hard to increase outreach to residents and business owners in the West End and beyond to promote the organization’s events.

“Through her numerous connections, Kathy was able to bring enough volunteers for our events and make them successful,” Jariwala said. “The association is thankful to Kathy for her dedication in promoting West Alameda as a vibrant and friendly business district.”

Prior to joining WABA, Moehring worked in the former Alameda Power & Telecom’s marketing department, owned a business and did public and government relations work. During her WABA tenure, she served on the city’s Transportation Commission and as president of the local Rotary.

In addition to being the Rotary’s immediate past president, Moehring is also president of the Alameda Family Services board and winner of the LENA Award from Bay Area Women in Business. She was also named Alameda’s Citizen of the Year in 2008 for her 15 years of service to the city.

10 Comments »

  • Tony Daysog says:

    That’s a real bummer. Kathy is such a positive, energetic force for Webster Street.

  • Karen Bey says:

    And she’s the strongest advocate for the Webster Street Vision Plan. I’m concerned that without Kathy, the Webster Street Vision Plan may not happen.

  • Sue Trowbridge says:

    I have only met Kathy a few times, but each time I have been struck by her incredible energy and positivity (and she’s a wonderfully talented singer to boot!). She has been a tireless advocate for West Alameda, and I sincerely hope that another local organization snaps her up immediately so the Island can continue to benefit from her skills and connections.

  • Scott says:

    We need to keep moving forward with the Webster Street vision plan in Kathy’s honor.

  • Jen Laird says:

    I had the pleasure of working with Kathy recently on the Webster Street Appreciation Night in December organized by Alameda PTAs. I was very impressed with her energy and ability to get things done. I too hope a local organization snaps her up soon!

  • Dawna says:

    My partner Margaret and I are also sad to see Kathy’s energy and positive feel for Alameda’s West End leave. We wish Kathy nothing but success and recommend anyone looking for growth to snap her up. We hope the City plans a fond farewell gathering for Kathy. I beleive we can speak for others that have volunteered and supported Kathy the last 4 plus years, we would love to have the opportunity to share our love with her as she leaves WABA. Kathy we love you!!!

  • Mike B says:

    Such a loss for Webster St! Kathy was the best thing that ever happened to it. She IS Webster St.

    And I’ll officially start the campaign here:

    Rename Webster Street to Moehring Ave!

    Love you Kathy!
    Mike Berkowitz

  • John Piziali says:

    Here on the West End it has always been one step forward and two steps back. I have always felt that Kathy was rowing upstream with out any oars, and she somehow kept us going forward. That is a very hard thing to do and still make it look like everthing is going your way. Good luck my friend. John P.

  • Sandip says:

    I think WABA is in good hands with Judy’s organization and administration skills, even with a smaller budget. Also, the Board is going to ensure that the district is kept clean, the events, including the Jam and the Concerts, are held as in the past and the Webster St. vision plan recommendations are implemented.

  • Hugh says:

    The Webster Street business group can hire Judy back – just not using public funds. What happened to personal responsibility ? Is everthing now just an extension of some government program.. how sad. Stop taking government funds –

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