Marano Fellows Class of 2012

Name: Ben Espitia

Director, Workforce Development


Goodwill Serving the People of Southern Los Angeles County

Location: Long Beach, CA
Industry Sector: Retail, E-commerce, Sign Language and Foreign Language Interpreting, Document Destruction, and Workforce Development
Type of Organization: Non-profit Corporation

Organizational Background & Mission: Since 1929, Goodwill SOLAC has been a community resource providing skill development and work opportunities to help people feel whole through the power of work!

Interest in Sector Work: In 2005, Goodwill SOLAC opened a health care training program with an emphasis on Certified Nurse Assistant training. Through technical assistance from Goodwill Industries International staff, this health care training program was more fully developed as a sector based training program and has grown to also provide Certified Home Health Aide training, Medical Insurance/Billing and Coding training, with plans to initiate a Phlebotomy training program in September 2012. Goodwill SOLAC has developed a cadre of health care employers who attend our Positive Recruitments to interview our participants on the day prior to graduation which affords the students more of a one on one opportunity to meet those individuals who actually do the hiring. The Loss Prevention (LP) and Security training program is a more recent sector based initiative and is provided in conjunction with a professional security firm, Secure-Tek Inc., who provide the instructors and links to other LP and Security companies. Positive Recruitments are also scheduled for LP graduates on the same day of their graduation. Goodwill SOLAC is currently determining whether to initiate a Culinary Arts/Hospitality sector training program in 2013. Goodwill SOLAC is committed to follow all its training program graduates for up to 5 years so as to provide on-going support that enables the graduates to access additional training and job opportunities that moves them up the career ladder and on to economic self-sufficiency.