Illustration by Carola Noguer

(If you missed it or slept through it, Here is Act 1.)

Ebony, we hardly knew you.

The day for the phone call with Salesforce arrives. My staff gathers. Certainly Ebony (yes, after all those videos, she’s become my BFF) will want to meet everyone, although I do wonder why we are doing this by telephone when SalesForce is only a BART stop away.

A couple of hours before the phone call, I get an email. Ebony cannot make the meeting, but Tato Corcoran, her executive assistant, will be in on the call. Am I being ditched by my new friend Ebony?

Tato is gentle. Mostly she wants to tell me, in the kindest possible words, that we are “probably” not a good fit. Probably? Hard-wired for optimism, I grab at the possibility that we might be a supremely good fit. I play up what we do have in common — Mission Local’s workforce efforts, our education component, our focus on journalists of color. “But you’ve read all that in the backgrounder,” I add.

I have not seen the backgrounder, she says.

I envision my beautiful backgrounder untouched in its PDF, crying out for attention. Or am I projecting?

Sure, if Tato reads it, she will change her mind.

I get off the phone, dejected but unbroken. I compose a nice email, attach the backgrounder (again) and press send. Another PDF hurtles into the e-void.

Earlier Posts

Upstart: First thought best thought? Salesforce Act 1, June 25, 2019

Upstart: The same (trying to raise money) but different (Mission Local is a nonprofit).Tuesday, June 18, 2019.

Lydia Chávez

I’ve been a Mission resident since 1998 and a professor emeritus at Berkeley’s J-school since 2019 when I retired. I got my start in newspapers at the Albuquerque Tribune in the city where I was born...

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1 Comment

  1. Sorta the equivalent of the career ending “we’ve decided to go in a different direction”.

    The backgrounder is a one minute skim.
    Which leads to the conclusion that nobody up the tower has ever read a ML article.
    It ain’t the kind of news for tower people.

    Bottom line – a face to face with a Corporate Executive Vice President/Chief Philanthropy Officer is an overreach unless you are blessed with some type of acceptable power connection. But thanks for trying.

    There is always the possibility of hosting a fundraiser on the Ohana Floor!
    It’s “perfect for hosting charitable fundraisers”!
    “for our local nonprofits”!

    Simple online form request.
    Mind the mandatory agreement to the No Privacy Policy. It’s a doozy.

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