Surlene Grant has more than 20 years of directing, managing and implementing community relations, public relations and government affairs activities including public involvement and outreach, media relations, crisis communications, special promotions and marketing, and environmental justice.
Ms. Grant's niche is with public involvement for community development and land use projects in ethnically, economically and socially diverse communities. She works with communities and project sponsors to move projects forward by identifying shared vision and goals, resolving conflicts, building consensus and seeking points of mutual gain.
She works with community activists, corporate board members, elected and appointed officials, union leaders, business owners, local residents and others.
Ms. Grant is knowledgeable and experienced with working with an array of regulators and government agencies at local, state and federal levels. Her list of clients and “ultimate clients” include Caltrans, State Department of Toxic Control Substances, U.S. Environmental Protection Agency, HUD, FAA, FHWA, Kaiser Permanente, Housing Authorities of Oakland and Marin County; Cities of Oakland, East Palo Alto, Dublin, and San Francisco; Association of Bay Area Governments, Amtrak, Union Pacific and others.
Ms. Grant’s projects related to facilitation, public outreach and community development include:
Co-creation and implementation of the Dumbarton Dialogue Project, a multi-jurisdictional effort (five cities and two counties) to develop consensus for transportation issues of the Dumbarton Bridge / Hwy. 101/ 84/ 85 corridor;
Public meeting facilitation and hearing officer for a series of public meetings regarding the Cabrillo Port LNG EIR siting of a LNG pipeline through Southern California Region involving such diverse communities as Malibu, Port Hueneme and Santa Clarita.
Facilitation and conflict resolution to move the debate and establish recommendations for the City of Oakland’s Blue Ribbon Commission on Inclusionary Housing.
Development of the strategy for the public outreach program to municipalities for the nine-county Bay Area Alliance for Sustainable Communities Draft Compact.The document focused on sustainable practices in 10 program areas including housing, jobs and transportation.
Facilitation with the award-winning consulting team for ABAG’s Smart Growth/ Footprint Project in which she facilitated key visioning sessions and public meetings in five Bay Area counties.
In addition to her own consulting endeavors, Ms. Grant serves as a Senior Practitioner with the Center for Collaborative Policy, California State University, Sacramento. She formerly served as a member of the San Leandro City Council (1998-2008). Ms. Grant has a B.S. in Journalism from Northwestern University, Evanston, IL and a M.A. in Management from John F. Kennedy University, Orinda, CA.
OUR PROJECTS (REPRESENTATIVE SAMPLE)
Dumbarton Dialogue Project, East Palo Alto and mid-Peninsula
A civic engagement project
involving the residents of Atherton, Menlo Park,
Redwood City, East Palo Alto, Palo
Alto and Mountain View.
The project was a multi-jurisdictional effort to develop consensus for
transportation issues of the Dumbarton
Bridge / Hwy. 101
corridor. Working with a team of outreach professionals, transportation
planners and others, the Dumbarton
Dialogue Project and University 101 program engaged citizens, giving them a
voice in the programs that impact their community, while at the same time
preparing residents for a leadership role in their respective community.Through the process the participants reviewed
a catalogue of transportation options, worked across jurisdictional boundaries,
developed the Dumbarton Dialogue Credo
and walked away with increased knowledge and tools for effective and
Street Zoning District, Oakland,
Grant managed pre-development environmental community meetings for Wood Street Zoning District, a
mixed-used development in West Oakland. She
also worked for several months with the property owners, civic leaders and
local residents to develop a shared vision and resulting beneficial community
re-use project for the 16th Street Train Station. In this capacity she
led several dialogue and focused discussion sessions with local community
leaders, residents and land owners with the goal of establishing consensus and
identifying financially feasible endeavors that yield acceptable community
benefits. The results was a Train Station plan that all stakeholders held to be
a realistic guide to future development of the project area. Her work in this
area led to her current work with RAILS, the entity responsible for the
development of the historic train station.
Kaiser Oakland Hospital Rebuild, Oakland, CA
Kaiser Permanente sought to rebuild its medical campus in Oakland. The site is completely landlocked and in an urban environment. Envirocom worked with the project team to create implement the outreach plan during the entitlement process and initial construction of the medical office building. In
addition, after the completion of the entitlement and planning process, Ms.
Grant created and implemented a workforce training and development program
(Kaiser CAP – Career Awareness Program) on behalf of Kaiser in conjunction with
Oakland Unified School District.Her activities included one-on-one meetings
with concerned neighbors and business owners/operators, as well as facilitated
several meetings with the neighborhood groups surrounding the project site
regarding project schedule, design and construction for the project.