As vice president at Cerrell, Fernando plays an instrumental role in providing strategic counsel for clients as they look to expand their footprint within the Ports of Long Beach and Los Angeles, the City and County of Los Angeles, Orange County, and especially in the City of Long Beach, where he spearheads the firm's practice. Fernando is well respected in the business community and has more than 10 years of legislative and political experience.
As an active member of the Long Beach Area Chamber of Commerce, Fernando sits on the Chamber's Government Affairs Council, and is also a board member for the Regional Hispanic Chamber of Commerce, as well as the Harbor Association of Industry & Commerce.
Fernando is skilled at developing the political and corporate alliances that allow clients to achieve their public affairs goals. Whether it’s identifying government stakeholders, or aligning strategy with the appropriate private sector interests, Fernando understands that success is only possible with the right support.
Prior to joining Cerrell Associates, Fernando worked for former United States Secretary of Labor Hilda Solis while she served as a California State Senator in the greater San Gabriel Valley. Fernando was her liaison for small business, labor, transportation and infrastructure issues in the district, working closely with the Metropolitan Transportation Authority, the Alameda Corridor Transportation Authority and the Southern California Association of Governments.
Fernando also worked as a paralegal for the Mexican American Legal Defense and Educational Fund (MALDEF) in Los Angeles. He assisted staff attorneys with legal research and brief preparation, and communicated MALDEF’s position on pending legislation to key legislators. He received an award for Distinguished Public Service from the United States Equal Employment Opportunity Commission for his work with community-based organizations.
He graduated from the University of California, Berkeley with a BA in sociology and was inducted into the Alpha Kappa Delta International Sociology Honor Society. Additionally, Fernando has an MPA from California State University, Long Beach. Fernando serves on the board of the Boys & Girls Clubs of Long Beach.