Mark Arabo on Chaldeans’ plight in northern Iraq. Image via

Gov. Gavin Newsom announced the appointment Wednesday of former Neighborhood Market Association President and CEO Mark Arabo to the California Workforce Development Board.

Arabo, 34, is president and CEO of management services business Refined Management, a position he has held since 2015. He is also an activist for the Chaldean community and a frequent critic of the persecution of Iraqi Christians.

Arabo served as president and CEO of the NMA from 2008 to 2015. In 2017, a lawsuit filed by NMA member companies led a San Diego judge to order the NMA to return $248,000 in improper payments approved by its board. Prior to running the NMA, Arabo served as a sales and marketing representative for Anheuser-Busch from 2004 to 2006.

Arabo’s appointment does not require confirmation by the state Senate and he will receive $100 per diem for serving on the board, according to the governor’s office.

— City News Service