Dr. Wallace Walrod
Chief Economic Adviser
Dr. Walrod has been in charge of research at the Orange County Business Council since 1997. He has led strategic projects with organizations including Toshiba America Information Systems, Hitachi Chemical, Merrill Lynch, The Irvine Company, First American Corporation, Citizens Business Bank, Bank of America, Los Angeles Business Council, California Emerging Technology Fund, Wexford Capital, Next 10, Orange County Community Foundation, California Center for Regional Leadership, PacifiCare Health Systems, Fueling California, John Wayne Airport, Pacific Life Foundation, Orange County Workforce Investment Board, County of Orange, City of Anaheim, City of Santa Ana, Protect California Jobs and Innovation Coalition, James Irvine Foundation, Deloitte & Touche, Inland Empire Economic Partnership, Los Angeles Department of Water and Power, San Diego Regional Economic Development Corporation, Orange County Transportation Authority, Southern California Association of Governments, Municipal Water District of Orange County, Viewpoint Learning, and Pacific Gas & Electric.
Dr. Walrod is also the Founding President of the Center for a New California, which plays a key role in shaping the state’s economic future by focusing on Workforce Development, Economic Development, Infrastructure, and emerging trends in corporate social responsibility. His work includes designing innovative program, strategy, and policy solutions for private industry, government, and private foundations, including the Orange County Community Indicators, Workforce Assessment Indicators, Orange County Comprehensive Economic Development Strategy (CEDS), the first ever Sustainable Communities Strategy addressing climate change issues at the local and regional levels, Workforce Housing Scorecard, Workforce Housing Toolkit, and Public Officials 101, Additionally, he is a lead economic advisor to the Southern California Association of Governments economic strategy initiative and directs research and policy for Fueling California, a coalition of major California fuel consumers.
Dr. Walrod graduated with a Ph.D. in Regional Economics from UC Irvine. His dissertation studied successful strategic management practices in high-tech firms, including advanced electronics and biotechnology. He has published three papers co-authored with Luis Suarez-Villa in Disasters, Journal of International Biotechnology, and Urban Studies, the latter winning the 1997 Donald Robertson Memorial Prize. He is quoted frequently in the Los Angeles Times, Orange County Register, Wall Street Journal, The Economist, Entrepreneur, and other publications on economic and business matters.