California Independent Schools Business Officers Association

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Cal-ISBOA 2020 Annual Conference

Now Virtual!
Pre-Conference HR Workshop, Sunday, May 3
Annual Conference, Monday, May 4

An enriching, informative and social experience...

Our Annual Conference brings together CFOs, Directors of Finance, Business Officers, Heads of School and Human Resources professionals from schools of all sizes and structures located throughout the state. Once a year we all come together to share our ideas, celebrate our successes, learn from our challenges, meet up with old friends and make new connections.

General Session Descriptions

  • Interactive and Facilitated Discussions on Goal Setting and Leadership.  Using videos from thought leaders in the area of Leadership, we'll discuss the role of the Business Officer as part of the Leadership team in defining and addressing areas of opportunity and challenge in independent schools today.
  • Panel Discussion - The New Normal: A Discussion of Disaster Related Issues Through the Lens of Wildfires and Lessons Learned this Past Month.  Originally planned to focus on the impact of the expanding wildfire season, this panel will now incorporate lessons learned this past month. The discussion will explore issues and vulnerabilities and the resources available to work through solutions. Leave with an action plan consisting of questions and strategies centered around the People, Place, and Program challenges that our new normal - uncertainty - creates. Some of the areas discussed include planning for an uncertain power supply, questions about the availability of technology and engaging parents, students, faculty and staff during wildfires and other emergencies our communities may face in years to come.


Chris Joffe, Founder & CEO, Joffe Emergency Services

Tom Wildman, Founder & Principal, Knowing Technologies
Daniel Klingebiel, Executive Director, NCIS San Francisco
Trip Thomas, Senior Vice-President, Arthur J. Gallagher & Co.

  • New Laws Impacting California Independent Schools It has been a busy year in the Legislature and the courts!  This presentation will provide Cal-ISBOA members with an opportunity to consider how new laws are impacting their schools.  We will cover recently enacted legislation and court decisions from California and across the country that are obligating schools to change their practices and preconceptions.  The presentation will go beyond compliance and address the strategic thinking necessary to stay on, or ahead, of the risk-management curve.  This wide-ranging, interactive presentation will enhance schools understanding of their new legal obligations and supply guidance on addressing these challenges proactively and effectively.

Michael Blacher, Partner, Liebert Cassidy Whitmore
Donna Williamson, Partner, Liebert Cassidy Whitmore

    Breakout Session Descriptions

    • Gift Acceptance Policies: Best Practices for Gifts & Fundraising. Should your school accept every gift that comes its way? With more and more schools embarking on fundraising campaigns, it is imperative that these gifts--and the potential unique and complex transactions that often accompany significant gifts--are accounted for correctly. We'll also discuss accounting best practices, donor-advised funds, and how CFOs can work most effectively with their Business Office Team and Head of School to tackle unique campaign challenges today and tomorrow.


    Dean Quiambo, Partner, Armanino LLP
    Matt Gard, Partner, Armanino LLP
    Julia Yzaguirre, CFO, Turning Point School

    • School Security: What You Need to Know. NBC News recently reported that "the number 1 reason parents send their children to a private school is Security." Independent School operators need to be able to answer the question, "What are you doing to keep my child safe?" with more than, "Nothing has ever happened here." In this presentation, we will explore how to start or jump start you security program, how to get an assessment and what should be included. What a school should expect from the results. How to take next steps in building an upgrade program. Who gets trained and why. Hiring a security team. In house versus contracted officers. Considering Armed Officers on Campus. What is proactive security and how does it work at a school, and more. Peter Crabbe from Chameleon Associates has helped scores of independent schools with Threat Assessments (needed for grants), training of guards, faculty, staff, parents and students and lectures on the benefits of Proactive Threat Assessment (the Israeli model) for schools.

            Peter Crabbe, Senior Consultant Trainer, Chameleon Associates

    • Delivering a Successful Construction Project – On Time, On Scope, On Budget!
      Join us for a presentation by Dave Lessing, Chief Operating Officer / Chief Financial Officer at Presidio Knolls School (San Francisco) and Leslie Lucas, Chief Operating Officer at The Athenian School (Danville). They will share ideas and information to empower school leaders to deliver successful school construction projects from planning to completion. During this session, you will receive suggestions and ideas for planning, delivering, and closing out capital construction projects. You will learn about the life cycle of construction projects, the roles / responsibilities of professionals involved, and special interest topics, including contracts, financing, project budget, insurance and more. 

            Dave Lessing, Chief Operating Officer / Chief Financial Officer, Presidio Knolls School
            Leslie Lucas, Chief Operating Officer, The Athenian School

    • Maximizing Your Benefits Package Direct your benefit dollars in ways that could provide greater value to employees and building goodwill and workplace satisfaction. 


    Jamie Greenleaf, Principal, Cafaro Greenleaf
    Brandon Burroughs
    , Assistant Vice President, Bolton & Co.

    Check back for updates!

    Thank you to all of our 2020 Sponsors!

    Martha Ambros,Cal-ISBOA Director


    Cal-ISBOA is recognized by SHRM to offer Professional Development Credits (PDCs) for the SHRM-CP® or SHRM-SCP®For more information about certification or recertification, please visit

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