Boulder Creek, CA, January 05, 2021 - The San Lorenzo Valley Water District has elected two directors and appointed one new director to its five-person Board of Directors (board), a governing body responsible for the establishment of policy that affects more than 7,900 connections. On December 7th, Gail Mahood and Tina Marie were sworn into the board after being elected in November. On December 16th, Mark Smolley was appointed and sworn into the board. These three new directors replace outgoing board members Richard Moran, Lewis Farris and Steven Swan.
The three new directors have vast experience and diverse qualifications:
Gail Mahood: The retired Stanford University geology professor has expertise in the effects of geology and climate change on the hydrology and biology of watersheds. She also brings a vast knowledge of groundwater issues, water quality (including post-fire contamination) and geologic hazards that could impact SLVWD facilities (i.e. landslides, earthquakes, floods, debris flows). Mahood served on Stanford’s budget and strategic planning group and the Land and Building Committee, and was chair of the Faculty Senate. She has also served on the SLVWD Engineering Committee since 2019.
Tina Marie To: A marine environmental scientist and active community member, To holds a bachelor’s degree in Law and Earth Science from UC Santa Cruz, along with a master’s in Environmental Science from the University of Sydney in Australia. As an environmental scientist, To has worked for the California State Water Board and the City of Richmond, specializing in wastewater issues. A frequent attendee and contributor at SLVWD meetings and a member of the community group Friends of San Lorenzo Valley Water, To believes water is the critical life force of the valley.
Mark Smolley: The Felton resident has participated with the SLVWD Engineering Committee for the past two years. He also served as a board member for six years with Rebuilding Together, a nonprofit in San Jose focused on improving low-income housing. Smolley served as the utilities construction project manager at Apple Inc.’s 170-acre campus from 2015-2018, and in a similar capacity for the University of California, San Francisco (2008-2014). A graduate of Penn State University, Smolley is a state-licensed professional geologist.
The SLVWD also passed three resolutions to acknowledge and thank the three departing board members:
Stephen Swan: Swan served on the board for two years, beginning in 2018. During his tenure on the board, Swan served as board president in 2020 and led the District through the CZU Wildfire. The board acknowledged Swan’s dedication to the proper management and fiscal viability of the district, as well as the protection of the watershed properties and the environmental health of the entire San Lorenzo River watershed.
Lewis Farris: Farris served on the board for 1 year & 7 months, after being appointed in 2019. His contribution and service began in 2014 when he served on the Community Outreach Citizens Advisory Committee and later as a public member of the Engineering Committee, where he was instrumental in the District earning a Transparency Certificate of Excellence and improving outreach to the public. Farris was also involved in the Santa Margarita Groundwater Management Agency and served as one of the District’s representatives.
Richard Moran: Moran served on the board for 1 year & 4 months, after being appointed in 2019. Before joining the board, Moran participated as a voice in the community, calling for a ban on glyphosate, a suspected human carcinogen. He also served as a public member on the Environmental Committee before he was seated on the board. Moran was responsible for moving forward the adoption of the District’s first Integrated Pest Management Plan, reducing the use of pesticides.
Established in 1941, the SLVWD supplies water to the communities of Boulder Creek, Brookdale, Ben Lomond, Lompico, Zayante, Scotts Valley, Manana Woods and Felton. Through a network of distribution lines, pump stations and reservoirs, the district now serves more than 7,900 connections and 35,000 residents.
Marci Bracco Cain
The Buzz PR LLC