Changing our guard but not our stripes


Caroline Brown, Chair ITEP

On behalf of the Board and Executive Committee of International Trade Education Programs, Inc., I am pleased to share some important news about our organization.  After 11 years of passionate and dedicated leadership, ITEP’s founder and CEO Carol Rowen has made the decision to retire.   The ITEP Board, after careful consideration of the strategic direction of the organization and a thorough professional search, has chosen Amy Grat to assume the role of CEO effective August 2nd.

We express our heartfelt thanks to Carol for her vision to introduce high school students to careers in international trade, transportation and logistics and to unite business men and women, educators and parents in preparing students for a meaningful place in the world of tomorrow.  As a Harbor Commissioner for the Port of Los Angeles, Carol saw the transportation and logistics industries of the region suffer from a shortage of qualified workers at the same time as Wilmington’s Banning High School, in the shadow of the Port, struggled to provide academic support and viable employment opportunities for its students.   Her response was to partner with the Port of Los Angeles and the maritime community to create ITEP’s first International Trade Academy at Banning in 1999.

Over the past ten years, ITEP has continued to grow, and today prepares over 2,000 students to graduate job ready and college prepared across our eight academies in five high schools throughout Southern California.  The ITEP staff–comprised of Carol, COO Bonnie Bair, and three professional program managers –diligently marshals the financial, intellectual and social assets of the international trade industry and directly engages over 150 business, government, and educational leaders who serve on our academy advisory boards.

Amy Grat, incoming Pres. & CEO and Carol Rowen, Founder & CEO of Intn'l Trade Ed. Programs (ITEP).

Today, we also welcome Amy Grat as ITEP’s new CEO.  As a globally-focused non-profit professional with over 15 years of experience raising revenue, managing programs and effectively building relationships, Amy brings to ITEP the skills and professional networks that will enable the organization to build upon our first decade of success.   As a member of the ITEP Board for the past three years, Amy has provided strategic input and raised revenues for the organization.

Immediately prior to ITEP, Amy was Director of Marshall Partners and Associate Director of Annual Giving for USC’s Marshall School of Business, where she received her MBA in 2008.  Previously, Amy served as Vice President of Investor Relations for the Los Angeles County Economic Development Corporation (LAEDC), where she was responsible for raising funds and developing the organization’s relationships within Southern California’s business, government and educational communities.

The ITEP Board, along with Amy and the ITEP staff, will be honoring Carol Rowen’s outstanding contributions to the industry and Port communities at the upcoming 2010 Maritime Industry Salute Dinner and 10th Annual Great Tug Boat Race to be held Sept. 16, 2010 at 5:00p.m. on the Queen Mary in Long Beach.  We hope you will join us that evening to celebrate Carol’s retirement and welcome Amy to ITEP.

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