Your daily roundup of the major stories from across the state, prepared every weekday by California’s premier public affairs firm.
With offices in San Francisco, Sacramento, Los Angeles, Oakland, Silicon Valley, and Marin, a team comprised of seasoned professionals from a multitude of disciplines, and a roster of industry-leading clients, Lighthouse is uniquely positioned to manage the most complex regulatory, community, governmental and communications challenges in the nation’s most dynamic state.
Chappie Jones has more than 35 years of public and private sector experience in public policy, strategy, leadership, project and channel management, and technical sales. Chappie’s extensive background gives him a keen understanding of the challenges and opportunities faced by the public and private sector. His experience provides him with the knowledge and know-how to solve all manner of local and regional problems across a multitude of sectors.
Chappie was elected to the San José City Council in November 2014 – with close to 60% of the popular vote – where he represented City Council District 1, the region of West San José that borders the cities of Campbell, Cupertino, Santa Clara, and Saratoga. In 2019, he assumed the role of Vice Mayor. During his tenure on the council, Chappie advanced policies to improve the quality of life for San Jose’s residents. In particular, he led efforts to increase the regional minimum wage in Santa Clara County, as well as policies that helped narrow San Jose’s digital divide. He has been a tireless advocate for advancing the economic interests of small and minority-owned business, at risk youth, and the underserved areas of San José.
Chappie led numerous local and regional agencies and commissions, including as chair of the Santa Clara County Valley Transportation Authority (VTA), as president of the Cities Association of Santa Clara County (CASCC), and as chair of the San José Small Business Advisory Task Force.
Prior to his election, Chappie worked in the private sector where he held senior regional management positions with Apple and AT&T.
Chappie has a bachelor’s degree in economics from the University of California at Davis and a Master of Business Administration from the Haas School of Business at UC Berkeley. Chappie has been married to his wife, Kelli, for 30 years. Together they have two grown children and live in the Murdock neighborhood of West San José.
Julia Forrest is a public relations and policy professional with experience in political journalism, communications strategy, digital/social media, and public relations. Prior to joining Lighthouse, Julia worked for news outlets in Michigan, Washington D.C., and California covering local, state, and national politics.
Julia also served as a communications consultant for Leopold Strategies, where she worked on numerous local, state, and national campaigns. She has ghostwritten op-ed’s and opinion pieces for a variety of local, state and national elected officials and organization leaders. Her experiences in civics and journalism equip her to understand and disseminate complex policy, legislative, and regulatory issues.
Julia earned her B.A. from the University of Michigan Gerald R. Ford School of Public Policy.
Denise brings more than 17 years experience in the public policy and state affairs environment. In her role with Elevance Health, she supported numerous executives and their teams to keep processes running smoothly and compliant.
As a Legislative Assistant within Lighthouse Public Affairs, Denise Corona Avalos brings her expertise in a broad variety of administrative tasks. She works directly with the Legislative Manager and firm lobbyists, providing scheduling assistance as well as technical and legislative support to our projects. Denise also monitors legislative and administrative hearings in the Capitol and follows issues and legislation important to our clients.
An alumnus of Sacramento City College and Skyline College, Denise is a Sacramento native who spends her spare time as an entrepreneur and affiliate marketer and is an avid “glamper.” During the summer months you’ll find her, her four dogs, and her husband on the Mendocino coast surrounded by redwoods.