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Aubry Stone, president of the CBCC, says he’ll step down next year

He cites health reasons, but says ‘don’t throw dirt on me yet.’

Juliana Norwood | 8/22/2013, midnight
Aubry Stone.

Aubry L. Stone, a native of Brooklyn, N.Y., has lived, worked and actively engaged in community and public service in Sacramento for decades. His focus is the creation of individual and community wealth through small business growth, development, and sustainability.

Stone is currently president/CEO of the California Black Chamber of Commerce (CBCC) and director of the California Black Chamber Foundation. He aggressively led the California Black Chamber fighting in such public policy issues as Prop. 187, a ballot initiative to establish a state-run citizenship screening system, publicly advocated against insurance redlining, and the inner city impact of bank acquisitions and mergers, and has been heavily involved in a slew of other hot-button issues that affect the community.

But his reign as president will soon come to an end. Stone has divulged that by the organization’s annual Ron Brown Summit next year, he will step down as president of the chamber, citing health reasons. By then he will have led the organization 20 years.

“It’s not something that is going to happen tomorrow, or next week, or next month, but it will happen,” he said. “This job is a lot of work, and it takes a lot of time and energy, but don’t throw dirt on me yet. There are a lot of pieces that need to be put in place before that time.”

Stone said that when the time comes, the chamber will have a statewide outreach to find an appropriate replacement to head the organization. “The fact we have survived as long as we have is an accomplishment in itself, but on a serious note we have worked hard advocating for minority business, and we have created a presence. We are relevant in California,” he said.

When asked about his views on the state of Black business in California, Stone said that although it is better than it was 20 years ago, it still isn’t anything to brag about.

“The economic struggle continues and this decision is one more step in that ongoing struggle. Even though I am leaving, I still plan to stay committed to the goals and objectives set forth by this organization.”

Under Stone’s direction, the California Black Chamber Foundation became owner of the state’s sole African American owned and operated low-powered radio station (97.7 KDEE-FM) serving the Sacramento region and nationwide online streaming. Stone received the Sacramento Observer newspaper’s Lifetime Achievement Award for being one of the most influential African Americans in the city of Sacramento over the past 40 years.

Aside from his work with the chamber, Stone also serves on the California Regional Community Utilities Diversity Council, the Citibank Regional Community Board, the Pfizer National Minority Business Board, the California Small Business Advisory Board, the Cal-Trans Small Business Board, and is a member of the Greenlining Coalition. He has served on the boards of the NAACP, Sacramento Black Chamber of Commerce, the Mayor’s Economic Development Council, the District Attorney’s Community Relations Board and the State Fair Minority Council.