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Our Team





Chris O’Connor
Senior Director, Transportation




Matthew Quevedo
Senior Associate, Transportation, Housing and Community Development

Summary of Work

For well over a decade, Silicon Valley Leadership Group member companies have identified Transportation and Housing as their top one and two public policy issues that need to be addressed in our region. This has guided our organization’s intense effort to deliver solutions.
The Leadership Group is well known for its accomplishments related to transportation policy and funding. We have led or co-led every transportation measure in Silicon Valley dating back to 1984 which made Santa Clara County the first self-help county in California.




Recently, the Silicon Valley Competitiveness and Innovation Project, produced by the Silicon Valley Leadership Group and Silicon Valley Community Foundation, found that the average Silicon Valley worker spends an hour and 10 minutes commuting per day (both ways), second only to New York City workers, who spend an hour and 14 minutes commuting.  Workers stuck in traffic lose hours of productivity, and daily congestion threatens on-time delivery of products and equipment.

With the recent success of Santa Clara County Measure B and the passage of SB 1 in the California legislature, it is obvious that transportation is top of mind for Silicon Valley residents.

Work Plan 2017 – 2019

Our Mission

The Silicon Valley Leadership Group and its Transportation Policy Committee (TPC) advocate for Silicon Valley’s long-term economic health and quality of life by increasing the ease in which Silicon Valley employees, residents, products and cargo move through and within the Valley. The goal of the Transportation Policy Committee is to improve transportation in a manner that minimizes our impact on the environment.

Regional Coordination & Transportation Initiative

Partner with large Bay Area cities, transportation agencies, and nonprofits to co-lead a regional transportation initiative.

State and Federal Advocacy for BART to Silicon Valley & Caltrain Electrification and Modernization

Advocate for state and federal funding for BART to Silicon Valley and Caltrain Electrification.

VTA Employer Shuttle Policy

Coordinate member input to develop VTA Employer Shuttle Policy.

San Jose Airport

Secure domestic, long-haul flights to SJC International Airport. By working with our members through the CEO Airport Task Force, the Leadership Group has championed the addition of international flights to Tokyo, London, Beijing and Frankfurt from SJC. With more domestic and international flights on the horizon, the Leadership Group will continue to lead and work with stakeholders to ensure that SJC is serving our business travel needs.

To learn more about the CEO Airport Task Force, please read this blog entry by CEO Carl Guardino. 

Our History


Caltrain Electrification Groundbreaking

After 21 years of tireless advocacy, the Silicon Valley Leadership Group joined Governor Jerry Brown, Congresswoman Nancy Pelosi, Congresswoman Anna Eshoo, Congresswoman Jackie Speier and other key stakeholders at the Millbrae Caltrain Station for the historic groundbreaking ceremony of the Caltrain Electrification Project. Leadership Group CEO Carl Guardino​, California Transportation Commissioner​, said of the major milestone, “This single step is electrifying for Bay Area commuters, the nearly 400 member companies of the Silicon Valley Leadership Group and our economy. This single step to electrification will allow us to grow capacity from 62,000 daily trips to more than 110,000, a true game changer for the Highway 101 corridor.”​

​The Leadership Group has been tenacious in advocating for Caltrain electrification and modernization. The last hurdle was cleared in May when U.S. Secretary of Transportation Elaine Chao approved a final $647 million grant that had been promised to help pay for the project. ​Special appreciation goes out to ​Senator Dianne Feinstein, along with Senator Kamala Harris, House Minority Leader Nancy Pelosi, and many Bay Area and Silicon Valley leaders who helped Silicon Valley achieve this historic milestone. Our combined efforts have secured $1.98 billion in local, state and federal dollars.

Caltrain Fact Sheet >>


Measure B – Better Commutes, Better Roads

In 2016, the Silicon Valley Leadership Group led “Measure B” on the November 8 ballot, which passed with 71.74 percent of the vote. The 30-year, half cent sales tax (which started revenue collection on April 1), includes:

  • $1.5 billion to extend BART from the Berryessa Station to East San Jose, Downtown San Jose, Diridon Station and Santa Clara University
  • $1.5 billion for County Expressway and Highway Interchange improvements to reduce congestion and increase safety
  • $1.2 billion for Local Streets and Road improvements and repair
  • $1 billion for modernization, safety and service improvements needed for the future electrification of Caltrain
  • $500 million for transit operations, increase bus frequency, create first/last-mile connections and create programs for low income residents and seniors
  • $350 million for a transit corridor study of the State Route 85 Corridor, noise abatement, transit and congestion relief projects
  • $250 million for Bicycle and Pedestrian improvements

CEO Carl Guardino had this to say after the win, “Measure B’s success is a tribute to the vision and values of Silicon Valley voters. We don’t whine about traffic problems; instead, we find winning solutions to our traffic problems. The component parts of Measure B are like a jigsaw puzzle, in which each individual piece is important, but how it fits together leads to countywide congestion relief, meaningful transit alternatives and greatly needed improvements to repair and resurface our streets and roads.”


Connecting Silicon Valley with the World

A new red and gold, state-of-the-art Boeing 787 Dreamliner is now in the skies above the Mineta San José International Airport. Hainan Airlines started a five-day weekly service between Beijing and San Jose on June 15, 2015. Hainan Airlines joins All Nippon Airways as the second major international flight the Silicon Valley Leadership Group’s CEO Airport Task Force helped secure.

The Leadership Group formed the CEO Airport Task Force in 2010. It was the brainchild of former San José Mayor Chuck Reed and Leadership Group CEO Carl Guardino who discussed it while they were on a flight from Tokyo back to San Francisco. The City of San José had just finished its modernization of the Mineta San José International Airport and turned the facility into the world-class airport it is today. The centralized location of the airport is convenient and allows employees to spend less time traveling and more time in the office and with their families. The problem was lack of flights to top business destinations.

Two years ago, the Task Force had its first victory in landing ANA and a direct flight between San José and Tokyo. The success of this flight has led to expanded service, from five days a week to seven days a week. In addition to Tokyo, surveys also showed Beijing as a top business destination.


Airport: Increase Flights/Service to SJC

The Leadership Group successfully worked with previous San Jose Mayor Chuck Reed and previous Airport Director Bill Sherry to identify ways to increase the number and frequency of flights to San Jose Mineta International Airport. Thanks to the Leadership Group’s CEO Airport Task Force and our partners at Mayor Reed’s Office and the Airport for making this happen. Read more about our success here and in the Mercury News and Business Journal. The Leadership Group formed a CEO Airport Task Force composed of Silicon Valley executives who want to strengthen the service at San Jose International Airport. A survey of the Leadership Group’s more than 345 members in March of 2011 identified 4 top domestic destinations and 2 top international destinations for business travel. The Airport Task Force is working with airline executives on attracting flights to these top destinations from San Jose. As part of this work, the Leadership Group had started a seat banking program where small and mid-sized businesses have the opportunity to support the SJC by forming a booking consortium that receives a modest discount in exchange for a commitment to support an airline. Part of this work is gathering information about the frequency and class of flights that small and mid-sized businesses take. If you are with a small or mid-sized company, please help us by filling out this survey on travel demand at Zoomerang.


BART to Silicon Valley: Phase 1 to Berryessa, San Jose

BART: A day to celebrate jobs well done, written by two Silicon Valley Leadership Group members who helped lead the BART sales tax campaigns, Mike Splinter, CEO of Applied Materials, and Godfrey Sullivan, CEO of Splunk.The BART Extension’s $900 million grant agreement with the Federal government was conveyed on Monday, March 12th, 2012.


Funding for Caltrain

Recognizing the financial challenges Caltrain continued to face each fiscal year, the Silicon Valley Leadership Group worked to identify and implement solutions to Caltrain’s fiscal problem. The Leadership Group analyzed potential solutions for their financial and political viability, outreached to regional leaders and the community through a regional summit and eight town hall meetings, and polled registered voters regarding their support for a sales or gas tax to support Caltrain service. Continued pressure from the Leadership Group and various advocacy organizations throughout the Bay Area finally secured interim funding solutions for the fiscal years 2012 and 2013. For more information, check out the following resources: our Leadership Group Save Caltrain Summit (1/21/2011), our Friends of Caltrain Workshop (1/29/2011), and Metro’s  MTC Transit Sustainability Project Friends of Caltrain


Measure B for BART

​With the federal government instituting new policy requiring a dedicated source of local operations and maintenance revenue for ​any funding agreement, the region’s back was against the wall to identify $50 million a year in new money.​ In the depths of the great recession and with billions of dollars on the line, the Leadership Group took a bold step and championed the effort to go back to the polls to save the project. 2008’s Measure B, a 1/8 cent sales tax passed the 2/3’s hurdle needed and guaranteed that BART to Silicon Valley would stay on track.


Cool Commutes Competition

200 members of the Silicon Valley Leadership Group convened to advance a different type of innovation – programs that make employees more effective anytime and anywhere.  The Cool Commutes Competition began in 2007 with the goal of encouraging Bay Area employees to use alternative modes of transit such as taking public transit, carpooling, vanpooling, bicycling, walking, and teleworking rather than driving solo to work.

The response was successful with Bay Area companies and other employers participating in the competition to reduce their carbon footprint. Cool Commutes was one of a dozen initiatives the Leadership Group initiated  in the past with the goal to help reduce greenhouse gas emissions and lessen our dependence on foreign oil.


Smart Parking Conference

The Leadership Group hosted 160 public officials, transportation/planning professionals and others to discuss innovative parking policies and technological strategies to facilitate better land use.


Measure A: BART to Silicon Valley

​Realizing a grand vision of a rapid rail system ringing the Bay Area, the Silicon Valley Leadership Group ​partnered with regional leaders to begin bringing​ BART to Silicon Valley. The success of 2000 ​Measure A​ BART to Milpitas and Berryessa (North San Jose) is delivering under budget and ahead of schedule. Projects also included extending light rail from downtown San Jose to the East Valley, increasing the level of Caltrain service and improving service in major bus corridors. For the report card on Measure A, please visit VTA here


Measure A/B: The Two Measure Solution

The Leadership Group followed up the success of the 1984 Measure A​,​ with Measure A/B. Measure A created a list of transportation projects recommended for funding while Measure B ​raised the revenue for Measure A. Both measures passed and funded transportation projects in Santa Clara County from 1996 – 2006​, such as Highway 17/880 improvements, Highway 101 improvements, the Highway 85/87 Interchange, and Caltrain service improvements.


Measure A: First Self-Help County in California

The 1984 transportation measure, Measure A, was the first of a series of sales tax efforts that the Leadership Group would take on. In the State of California, Measure A started the Self-Help County movement​.