The Isla Vista Recreation and Parks District appointed a new member to the board of directors at Thursday’s meeting after a nine-week long position vacancy.
Celene Washington, a second-year sociology major, was selected to join the board for the seven-month term. Tamari Dzotsenidze, a second-year political science major, also ran for the position.
“[Washington] has a passion for the things we do here,” said Carlos López, vice chair of the IVRPD board.
The board position has been vacant since former member Daniel Torres stepped down on March 8 because he could not maintain consistent residency in I.V., López said.
The application process consisted of a written application and interview conducted at the meeting. Current board members and members of the audience asked the candidates about their goals for the IVRPD and interests within the community.
Washington has volunteered with the I.V. Elementary School and for the Measure O campaign, which in May 2017 secured a special tax that now funds additional parks services in I.V.
The newly appointed board member said she is particularly interested in the I.V. Youth Center and engaging with the younger population in the community.
“To a certain extent [UC Santa Barbara] students can dominate the community,” Washington said, noting the importance of keeping children a part of the conversation when discussing the needs of the I.V. population.
During her time on the board, Washington said she plans to work toward creating more playgrounds for children, as well as organizing an assembly at I.V. Elementary School to talk with students about their thoughts on I.V. parks.
After being appointed, Washington joined the other four board members — López, Jacob Lebell, Pegeen Soutar and Matias Eusterbrock — for the remainder of the meeting.
The board voted to endorse Measure R, a ballot measure that would fund the I.V. Community Services District by imposing an eight percent tax on electricity, garbage disposal, gas, sewage and water services.
The board also voted to endorse Proposition 68, which would allocate $4 billion of statewide funds for California water conservation, water projects and outdoor recreation, including parks.
I.V. residents can vote on Measure R and Proposition 68 in the primary election on June 5.
The group also voted to move forward with St. George Family Youth Center’s plans for a second mural in Estero Park.
The IVRPD meets the second Thursday of every month at 6 p.m. in the District office in I.V.