Program Highlight

Program Highlight

Board Profile: Debra Taylor

An Interview with Board of Directors Vice Chair, Debra Taylor

Debra Taylor, Senior Vice President / Regional Manager of Union Bank has been on AnewAmerica's Board of Directors since 2009. Early this year she assumed the position of Vice Chair.

1. You recently began your post as Vice Chair of AnewAmerica’s Board of Directors. What compels you to support AnewAmerica’s work and to serve on our Board?
It’s important for me to be part of an organization that’s making a real impact in our community. AnewAmerica’s programs are improving the lives of low-income people. It makes me proud to participate in this work as a Board member.

2. How, in your perspective, is AnewAmerica making a difference in the lives of low-income new Americans?
AnewAmerica serves the low-income individuals that are often overlooked and marginalized in our society with comprehensive business development services. I see the difference AnewAmerica is making in people’s lives when I interact with their entrepreneurs. These entrepreneurs have pride in their businesses and their unique products and services, and pride in their ability to provide for their families and to create jobs. To get to know these business-owners is to see AnewAmerica’s work in action. AnewAmerica is cultivating businesses that are a gift to our community.

3. What do you see is the value of providing microenterprise development services and financial literacy education to low-income families?
Finances are the core of survival on this planet. If you want to have a life that gives you the opportunity to do more than have your basic needs met, but to realize your full potential, you have to be financially literate. Financial literacy creates a more level playing field in the economic world, and helps society as a whole. Small and microbusinesses are the core of our society.  These small businesses are often highly creative, lending a vibrancy to our lives. If a business owner doesn’t know how to navigate their finances, they won’t survive, no matter how great their product or service is. This is the beauty of AnewAmerica: they provide the training and assistance that entrepreneurs need to survive and thrive.

4. Anything else you would like to add?
I am continually inspired by how committed my fellow Board-members are to the organization and its mission. We all support the organization because we care about its work and impact.


2012 Expo & Celebration a Big Success!

Over 30 of AnewAmerica's microentrepreneurs exhibited their goods and services to hundreds of our community partners and supporters at the Microbusiness Expo & Celebration on November 15th. The event was held at the Albert H. Dewitt Officers' Club in Alameda. The night was filled with local cuisine and wine, shopping at our diverse microbusiness expo, live music, a fashion show, silent auction, and an inspiring awards ceremony.  Click here to view a slideshow of event pictures!

Pictured above, Left to Right: Larry Reed, Senior Regional Community Development Manager, HSBC; Hon. Teresa Cox, U.S. Department of Commerce; Xavier Abrams, Chair, AnewAmerica Board of Directors; Debra Taylor, AnewAmerica Board of Directors; Viola Gonzales, AnewAmerica CEO; Vishu Lalchandani, Treasurer, AnewAmerica Board of Directors; Elizabeth Echols, SBA Regional Administrator; Robert Lattimore, COO, AnewAmerica. (Photos courtesy of Eric Muetterties.)



Click here to download the event overview!

Click here to learn more about event sponsorship opportunities!

For more information about the event: (510) 540-7785 ext. 305.

Click here for a map and directions.

Healthy Roots

Gardening and Food Justice Program for Early Childhood Education Entrepreneurs

Healthy Roots

AnewAmerica has initiated a community food project with childcare business owners as part of our work in Social Responsibility and Food Justice. AnewAmerica is assisting daycare entrepreneurs to facilitate the launch of edible gardens, and supporting the development of gardening and nutrition curriculum within the daycares.

Healthy Roots is serving 28 daycare entrepreneurs, including 224 children, and 45 families in San Francisco, Novato, San Jose, and Richmond.

The Objectives

  • Increase the awareness of the importance of organic, sustainable edible gardening, and to increase the quality of nutrition for over 200 low-income children and their families.
  • Increase awareness about ecology. sustainable agriculture, nutrition, and protection of the environment.
  • Educate children about the importance of balanced nutrition and the link between eating fresh, healthy, local food, and their physical well-being.

Daycare Gardening Project Training for Daycare Entrepreneurs

AnewAmerica works with organizations devoted to sustainable garden development such as the Garden for the Environment, Ecology Center, and community volunteers to train and educate our entrepreneurs in the following ways:

  • Creating or enhance an edible organic garden
  • Implementing organic gardening curriculum into the educational component of their services
  • Educating children and parents on the benefits of edible gardens

The food produced in these gardens will be consumed by the children that attend the daycare, and the surplus will be taken home to their families

Policy Change

Our team of AnewAmerica staff and with support from Children’s Council have collaborated to increase the quality of nutrition and the implementation of the Healthy Roots gardening project in the following ways:

  • AnewAmerica has provided the entrepreneurs with support to develop a curriculum and a business policy in their daycare facility.
  • AnewAmerica has provided the daycare entrepreneur with the training on how they can be advocates in their daycare and communities for childhood nutrition and sustainable gardening
  • Conduct advocacy meetings with local and regional childhood agencies

For more information, contact Lisset Ramirez at This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it. or by phone at (510) 532-5240.