Coachella Valley Water District will start 2021 with one new member on the Board of Directors.
The Board appointed John Aguilar, former Mayor of Cathedral City, to fill the seat vacated by Director G. Patrick O’Dowd, who resigned Nov. 3 to take a post as Executive Director of the Salton Sea Authority. Aguilar will fill out the remainder of O’Dowd’s term, ending in December 2022.
Aguilar was the only candidate to fill O’Dowd’s Division 1 seat, which includes Cathedral City and Rancho Mirage. The owner of the El Morocco Inn and Day Spa in Desert Hot Springs, he is an Executive Committee Member of the Coachella Valley Association of Governments.
In addition, he sits on the boards of Shelter from the Storm, Cabot’s Pueblo Museum, Coachella Valley Mountain Conservancy, Desert Community Energy Authority, and the League of California Cities Executive Committee, Riverside Division.
Aguilar’s work history includes posts at the Riverside County Economic Development Agency, Coachella Valley Housing Coalition, and several real estate development agencies in Northern California.
He earned a Bachelor of Arts degree and a Master of Public Administration degree from California State University, Chico.
He joins the five-seat board that has two veteran members who both ran unopposed in the November 2000 election.
Returning Directors Anthony Bianco and Peter Nelson will serve four-year terms ending in December 2024. Both are growers.
Elected to the Board in 2016, Bianco enters his second term. Nelson begins his sixth term. He is the longest serving Director, starting service in 2000.
They join fellow Board members President John Powell and Vice President Cástulo Estrada.