For Oakland’s Dimond District to be a vibrant, safe, and beautiful place for everyone to live, work, shop, and play.
We are a community-based, non-profit organization, with membership and participation open to all. We bring together residents, businesses, agencies, and other groups to engage in collective efforts to beautify our neighborhood, promote a thriving commercial district, improve public safety, and build a stronger sense of community and belonging.
Inclusiveness: We seek diversity on our board and in community involvement, with openness to all voices and interests.
Respect: We treat each other, and the community, with consideration and kindness.
Collaboration: We prize teamwork, transparency, and the sharing of opportunities to shape our work.
Leadership: We each take initiative and responsibility for aspects of the organization, and aim to inspire each other and the community to make a difference.
Impact: We focus on making significant and meaningful contributions to the community, continually assessing and improving our effectiveness.
Involvement Builds Community
The Dimond Improvement Association has many committees and projects to benefit the community. Take a look at our Projects & Committees page and see what might interest you! There are opportunities to volunteer from once a year to once a week.
Serving on Our Board
If you are interested in becoming a board member, please contact our chair, Ryan Romaneski, at RyanR@DimondNews.org. Our board election takes place every April, with nominations open several months in advance. New board members may also be appointed by the board at other times of the year if there are vacancies. See more about joining the board.
- Our board meetings are held the second Thursday of the month at the Dimond Branch Public Library at 3565 Fruitvale Ave., Oakland, CA, 7-9pm. (Note: During the pandemic, the board is meeting via Zoom.) Committee meetings take place as determined by the individual committees.
- The public is invited to our board meetings. If you would like to request an item added to the agenda, please email our chair, Ryan Romaneski, at RyanR@DimondNews.org.
- Board meeting minutes are posted to the website approximately one month after the meeting, following board review and approval. See elsewhere on this page for minutes dating back to 2015, when we became an incorporated nonprofit.
DIA General Meetings are held approximately five times a year, on the first Wednesdays of Feburary, April, June, August, and October, unless otherwise announced. The meetings are typically at the Dimond Branch Public Library, 7-9pm. See the Events Calendar for upcoming meetings and topics. Note: During the pandemic, general meetings are being held virtually via Zoom
Board of Directors 2020
Jay’s vision for the Dimond: to create a vibrant, inclusive destination commercial district that draws residents from across Oakland, and to strengthen a shared sense of community among local residents.
Zandile’s vision is to have the Dimond be clean and safe for all and to maintain the district’s charming characteristics.
Fran’s vision is to continue the mission of the DIA to beautify the neighborhood through public art; develop a safe and vibrant business district, drawing new businesses and bringing variety to the community; invite new customers and residents to our neighborhood; and continue to serve our community.
Tomasz’s vision for the Dimond is to retain the diversity that motivated his family to move here, fill in the empty storefronts and vacant lots with thriving businesses, and keep up Dimond Park and Sausal Creek.
Chris’ vision for the Dimond is to further its growth as a community built by involvement. This means facilitating communication among community members, DIA members, merchants, visitors, and the many organizations that have the Dimond as their focus.
Julie’s vision for the Dimond is a thriving business district with a variety of cool offerings, including interesting retail and dining experiences. She would love to help usher in more public art and is passionate about retaining some of Dimond’s architectural aspects from the past.
Marjorie is happy to have been a resident of the Dimond for 26 years. She was active in various parent groups at both Sequoia Elementary and Bret Harte Middle School, where her three daughters attended. Her small business, MarjTax, provides tax preparation and bookkeeping services for non-profits. Marjorie feels fortunate to be working with a variety of amazing agencies with a diversity of missions including: at-risk youth outreach, scientific research, animal rescue, environmental education, human trafficking rescue, as well as a couple municipal improvement districts. She also serves as treasurer for the Dimond Business & Professional Association.
Marjorie’s vision for the Dimond is a place that continues to have amazing grocery options and a variety of affordable diners. Going forward, she envisions fun and appealing places for young folks to safely gather and regular entertainment events for families.
Marion’s vision for the Dimond is to make it a more attractive place to live through beautification projects, eliminating panhandlers and homeless encampments, and working with city agencies and the community. She wants to increase the community’s knowledge of DIA with the hope that more people will join and volunteer to add greater strength to our endeavors.
Ryan’s vision for the Dimond is a robust, safe, and highly walkable commercial district, increased mixed-use development that brings more residents to the transit-rich neighborhood, and a DIA that is an engaged and responsive voice of the community.
Originally from San Francisco, Ben returned to the Bay Area in 2009 and became a homeowner in the Dimond in 2017. He has worked in the tech sector since 2008, most recently as the Lead Web and Analytics Engineer at Ripple, a finance-tech company in downtown San Francisco. Ben is a hospice volunteer at Pathways, where he visits patients with his canine good citizen, a goldendoodle named Cow. He also volunteers at the Oakland Hebrew Day School. Using his tech skills to give back to the community, Ben has created websites for a number of nonprofits, including Doctors of the World and the International School Counselor Association. Ben lives with his wife and baby daughter. He enjoys gardening, listening to his record collection, and building furniture.
Ben’s vision for the Dimond is to improve this already thriving community by creating safer walking spaces, cultivating new businesses and supporting those already in the area, and ensuring that the community remains inclusive for all.
Daniel’s vision for the Dimond is to see positive, progressive solutions for the challenges that currently face the Dimond District and the City of Oakland.
JoAnn’s vision for the Dimond is to see a more vibrant commercial area, stronger unity between the DIA and the merchants association, and a safer environment to explore food and art in the Dimond day or night.
Victoria’s vision for the Dimond includes people walking more and driving less, knowing each other better, and spending more time patronizing our businesses and enjoying our magnificent park. She would like to see a safer, more beautiful, and culturally vibrant Dimond where everyone contributes to a positive community spirit.
Originally from Santa Cruz, Kevin has lived in New York and San Francisco before becoming a homeowner in the Dimond district in 2019. He has a background in theater, film, stand-up, and graphic design, and currently works as a Publisher for Horsley Bridge Partners, a global private equity fund-of-funds, in San Francisco. He’s also produced live theater and comedy events, including the nerd comedy shows Eureka! and You Should Know This! When he’s not spending time with his wife and baby daughter, he loves to cook, travel, and write.
Kevin’s vision is to continue the work of others in creating a thriving and prosperous commercial district and making sure the Dimond is a safe and beautiful place for those in the community.
Dimond Branch Library
In the 1980s, the DIA worked with the City of Oakland to move the Dimond Library to a new site with improved facilities, a larger space to house the library collection, and a community meeting place. The Dimond Library is now an extremely busy branch library and provides educational and fellowship programs for all age groups, also hosting community meetings and events in the large meeting room. The Dimond Branch Library celebrated its 100th year Anniversary in 2015. Website: http://www.oaklandlibrary.org/locations/dimond-branch.
Closure of Hillcrest Motel
Dimond Public Safety Council / 22X NCPC
Dimond Gateway Garden & Beautification in Dimond
Some 30 volunteers Starting in