Zona Seca, Inc., a community organization that has counseled over 60,000 residents in the past 30 years, recently appointed Santa Barbara Police Chief Camerino Sanchez and former City Councilman Dr. Dan Secord to its board of directors.

The counseling organization, located in Santa Barbara County, offers programs for youth offenders, substance abusers and victims of family violence. Zona Seca Executive Director Frank Banales said existing board members selected Sanchez and Secord based on their relationships to the community.

“We are thrilled to have Dr. Secord and Chief Sanchez on board the agency’s leadership team,” Banales said. “Their involvement is crucial to our ability to raise awareness about the important work of our organization.”

Sanchez became police chief of Santa Barbara County in 2000. He has also volunteered on the leadership boards of several other nonprofit organizations, including the local chapters of Domestic Violence Solutions and the American Red Cross.

Secord is a current California Coastal Commission board member and has lived in Santa Barbara for 30 years. In addition to his tenure as a city councilman from 1998 until 2006, Secord founded the Cottage Hospital Independent Practice Association. He has also served as Santa Barbara’s Harbor Commissioner and Planning Commissioner.

Banales said these two new members are assets to the Zona Seca program.

“If you get individuals like them to talk about what they do, they can spark an interest in the community and get more people to sit on the board,” he said.

According to a press release, Zona Seca’s programs focus on substance abuse education and prevention techniques. The organization also offers counseling and violence prevention classes.

The organization’s Youth Offender Program, for example, educates young, first-time offenders about the consequences of their actions and how future alcohol and drug citations may affect them.

Zona Seca runs separate counseling programs for driving under the influence, family violence and drug diversion. The group has offices in both Santa Barbara and Lompoc