LA Chamber of Commerce Appoints Maria Salinas New CEO
The Los Angeles Area Chamber of Commerce has appointed Maria Salinas to head the organization, effective Aug. 1, according to an official release from the business organization. Salinas is the first woman to head the chamber, which, founded in 1888, is the oldest and largest business association in L.A. County. The former Walt Disney Company executive will be taking over from CEO Gary Toebben, who will retire on July 1 after leading the chamber for 12 years.
“Maria has the unique combination of financial acumen and sound leadership skills paired with an entrepreneurial spirit that makes her the perfect choice to lead the Chamber,” said Michelle Kerrick, the board chair for the Chamber, in the release. “On top of this, she has deep community involvement and an insurmountable passion for seeing this city prosper well into the future. As a lifelong Angeleno, we are confident Maria will champion diversity and bring our communities closer together.”
Prior to launching her own finance and accounting management business, Salinas Consulting, in 2006, Salinas held financial leadership roles at Disney for 11 years.
She also developed public accounting experience working with EY. In addition to serving as the director and former chairwoman of ProAmérica Bank, Salinas is the chair of the Board of Regents at Loyola Marymount University, her alma mater. She also serves on the board of directors at UnidosUS and holds a board position at the Kaiser Permanente School of Medicine.
“I am excited and honored for the opportunity to build upon the great progress the chamber has made in Los Angeles and lead it into its next chapter,” Salinas said in prepared remarks. “Throughout my career, I have used my financial expertise and business acumen to lead and create change and make a lasting impact both in business and in the community. I look forward to working alongside the talented staff and board of directors to continue to carry out the chamber’s important mission of championing economic prosperity and quality of life for the Los Angeles region.”