This Chapter received its charter from the Project Management Institute in July, 2000 and was included under the PMI Group Exemption Letter #2419 issued by the Internal Revenue Service on June 18th, 2001. The Charter was presented to us in Person by Mr. Bill Duncan who was a member of the PMI Board of Directors at the time. Bill was making a presentation at a project management conference at the Fess Parker Red Lion Inn in Santa Barbara and gave a talk to the first official meeting of our chapter on his favorite subject, "Ten Things You Need to Know about The Guide to the Project Management Body of Knowledge" on August 3rd, 2000.
Our first program meeting was the culmination of a yearlong effort by a "core group" that began to meet in the summer of 1999 to explore the idea of creating a chapter that would serve Ventura, Santa Barbara and San Luis Obispo Counties. Early members of the core group were: Abel Mosqueda and Don White from San Luis Obispo; Barbara Guarnieri, Wynette Winkler, Annie Meyers and Kathleen Roxby from Santa Barbara, and Doug McAvoy, Bill Wilund, Jim Peters and Scott Freauf from Ventura County. Jim and Scott were active members of the Los Angeles Chapter at the time and brought much needed experience to our fledgling group. Most of the core group meetings were held in various locations in Santa Barbara since it was mid way between San Luis Obispo and Thousand Oaks.
However our activities quickly began to have a more local focus as we contacted other PMI members in the tri-counties to assess interest, and find topics and activities that would attract members. PMI-Global Operations Center required that at least 25 members of the Institute in our geographic area sign a petition that they would support a chapter. Thus in the fall of 1999 we started our petition drive and began working on a chapter name. We quickly found more than 25 PMI members that were willing to support a chapter, and chose the name Los Padres Chapter from the Los Padres National Forest which takes up much of the back country of all three counties. Those of us who grew up here thought that would work just fine. However, over the years we were continually surprised by the number of people who have no awareness of the existence of the National Forest. During the first few years the chapter rotated the monthly meeting venue between the three major cities of San Luis Obispo, Santa Barbara, and Ventura. We met in the Diablo Canyon Nuclear Power Plant Public Information Center, a CALTRANS Engineering Facility, the Proud Bird at Santa Barbara Airport, and the Big Yellow House in Summerland, a Chinese Restaurant in Ventura and the gold Coast Innovation Center on the campus of CSU Channel Islands... among many others. If you wonder why we are meeting where we are meeting now, ask the chapter officers. The locations, times, and days we meet are what we think our members want. You should always feel free to question these things in the spirit of improving the Chapters performance in meeting the members' needs.
The chapter started with 34 Founding members listed below and has grown steadily. As the Chapter's grown, it has become necessary to establish three additional subgroups to better meet the needs of our members. The groups are located in Santa Barbara, San Luis Obispo and Bakersfield.