Board of Directors

The Sonoma County Regional Parks Foundation Board of Directors is an actively engaged group of volunteers and advisors. From hiking together, to helping staff events, to regular attendance at board and subcommittee meetings, they provide important oversight, wisdom, skills, and smiles! (Scroll down for full bios.)

 

When fully appointed, the Parks Foundation board of directors consists of 19 members. The Sonoma County Board of Supervisors appoints 10 members, and the Parks Foundation board appoints nine. Board members raise funds for Regional Parks’ projects, serve as parks ambassadors in the community, and oversee the staff and budget of the Parks Foundation. The organization also hosts an advisory board of community leaders who provide strategic guidance for the nonprofit.The Parks Foundation encourages interested individuals to learn more about the board and consider applying for board membership.

Board of Directors 

The current members of the Parks Foundation Board of Directors are listed below. (You can click on the board members’ names to learn a little bit more about them.)

Carol Eber, Chair
Carol Eber has lived in Sonoma County since 1969.  She is a seventh generation Californian and great great granddaughter of Mark West. She has had a career in education for over 35 years. She taught at Rancho Cotate High School, led projects in international studies and foreign language at SSU, and served as a school and district administrator at Petaluma High School, Drake High School and the Tamalpais High School District. She currently is an education consultant. She has held seats on the City of Petaluma Technology Advisory Committee and Youth Commission. She has a passion for connecting young people to their environment – both the natural and the built. Her favorite regional park is Tolay Lake, and her favorite park memory is “Camping at Gualala Point Regional Park with my son when he was young.”
Nicole (Nicki) Artieres
Nicki has resided in Sonoma Valley since purchasing her grandmother’s summer home in 1975.  She enjoyed many years as a youth in the Valley’s glorious outdoors and came here to start her family. Her adult boys and dogs filled their weekends with numerous outings to the parks in Sonoma County for many years.  Nicki has owned two Sonoma Valley businesses: The Real Food Catering Company in the 80’s and Focus4 Promotions since 1998. She has sat on the Sonoma Valley Chamber of Commerce and the Sonoma Valley Groundwater Management Board, is currently on the Board of Zone3A Water for Sonoma Valley, and is Sargent at Arms and Membership Chair of the Rotary Club of Glen Ellen/Kenwood. Nicki’s favorite park is Sonoma Valley Regional Park where she frequently enjoys outings with her two dogs.
Justin Borton
Justin Borton leads a group of trail runners to the top of Taylor Mountain every Tuesday morning. His love of running and his talent for promotion culminated in the “Sonoma Strong” effort when he rallied the Sonoma County trail running and fitness community to raise money and awareness for Sonoma County Regional Parks and help fund the recovery from the wildfires of 2017. A resident of Sonoma for 14 years, Justin works in sales. In addition to Taylor Mountain Park, Justin loves a steep run up Hood Mountain and meeting up with the Healdsburg Running Company and Shiloh.
Jenifer Freebairn
Jenifer Freebairn of Sebastopol is a 16-year  Sonoma County resident. She has worked with many nonprofit organizations during her career in winery sales and marketing. She hopes to promote park passes as an employee benefit that can inspire healthy habits and good team morale. A lover of all parks, Jenifer enjoys riding her bike on the Joe Rodota Trail between Sebastopol and Forestville and is particularly fond of “sunrise and sunset hikes up Taylor Mountain in the spring when the landscape below is brilliant green as far as the eye can see.”
Ari Hauptman, MD, Secretary
Ari Hauptman, MD has called Santa Rosa and Sonoma County home since 2001.  He is a pediatrician who is especially concerned with decreasing childhood obesity and youth nature deficit syndrome by helping to promote our Sonoma County Regional Park gems to the families of Sonoma County.  He is proud that the parks are equally accessible to all families of diverse socioeconomic backgrounds.He loves the outdoors and hiking, skiing, camping, backpacking and breathing pristine oxygen molecules.  He grew up in southern California and is so appreciative of the open spaces that northern California and Sonoma County work so hard to preserve. His favorite regional park is Spring Lake, and his favorite park memory is “Our first climb of Hood Mountain to Gunsight Rock as a family on my birthday.”
Rochelle Cook Johnson, Treasurer
Rochelle Cook Johnson is a native of Santa Rosa and is a 4th generation Californian. She graduated from San Jose State University with a BA in political science, with emphasis on public administration. She has specialized in program accounting for various high tech firms and has managed a law office in Santa Rosa. She is active on several youth athletic boards, plays soccer and enjoys cycling here in our beautiful county and beyond. Her favorite regional park is Schopflin Park, and her favorite park memory is “The dedication of Trione Soccer Fields at Schopflin Park after 3 years of fundraising and development meetings.”
Cameron Scott Kirk, Vice Chair
Cameron Scott Kirk has practiced law in San Francisco and Santa Rosa for more than 25 years.  He specializes in environmental, real estate, land use and water law.  He has successfully represented major international corporations in a variety of complex multimillion-dollar lawsuits, as well as local companies and private property owners in smaller, but no less important, disputes.  He has served in multiple Sonoma County and statewide organizations focusing on sound environmental business practices and water law.  Scott has also volunteered and supported several county charitable organizations, and has an abiding appreciation for the natural wonders of Sonoma County. His favorite regional park is Spring Lake, and his favorite park memory is “Running The Human Race through Spring Lake with 10,000 of my closest friends.”
Hugo Mata
Hugo Mata has lived in Sonoma County for more than 25 years.  He was born and raised in the Mexican State of Jalisco and migrated to Sonoma County at the age of 17.  For more than 12 years he has been working as a consultant participating in environmental outreach projects with Spanish-speaking audiences.  As Director for Media and Bilingual Outreach he works closely with C2 Alternative Services’ team in developing environmental education programs for non-English speakers.  He produces and hosts “Nuestra Tierra,” a weekly one hour environmental radio show at KBBF radio. His favorite regional park is Crane Creek, and his favorite park memory is “Hiking at Stillwater Cove Regional Park.”
Steve Meacham
Steve Meacham of Sonoma is a 30 year resident of Sonoma County and brings 35 years of marketing, consumer research, and organizational development expertise to the Parks Foundation board.  For 18 years he owned and operated Creative Audience Research, a media marketing research and consulting company with clients including Viacom, Gannett, and Journal Broadcasting.  He has been an active member of the Sonoma County land stewardship and parks community, serving on the LandPaths Board of Directors for 8 years and regularly volunteering for Regional Parks.  He is passionate about helping facilitate parks access “so all residents can experience the area’s diverse natural beauty on their own terms, a prerequisite for taking action to preserve the environment.”   Steve’s favorite Regional Park is Sonoma Valley, and his favorite park memory is “the smile on my dog’s face when we get to the parking lot.”
Michael Murphy
Michael Murphy of Sebastopol is a deeply devoted Sonoma County equestrian, active Realtor, and committed conservationist. He has been patrolling parks on horses as a member of the Mounted Assistance Units of state and county parks since 1992, and has served in leadership roles with Back Country Horsemen of America and California. He has actively assisted the Santa Rosa Junior College equine studies program through teaching, student advising, and helping raise $5 million for the college’s equine facility. He holds a BS in Environmental Planning from Sonoma State University. Michael’s passion for parks is driven by his vision of preserving open spaces and trails in healthy and sustainable condition for his grandchildren.
Richard Retecki
Richard Retecki brings 40 years of work experience and advocacy relating to parks, public access, acquisition of open space lands, resource conservation, and long-range planning throughout Sonoma County and the North Coast. He was a project manager and advanced planner with the California State Coastal Conservancy for over 20 years, was a founding member of the Martin Luther King, Jr. Freedom Center in East Oakland, and has contributed time and expertise as a board member for many other nonprofit organizations at the statewide, regional and local levels. He brings unique historical knowledge of the development of our regional parks combined with a lifelong commitment to their promotion and preservation. He continues to coach Little League baseball. His favorite regional park is Hood Mountain, and his favorite park memory is “Watching dramatic sunsets from the bluffs at Gualala Point.”
Phillip Sullivan
Phil Sullivan brings to the Parks Foundation a demonstrated passion for parks as places of restoration and rehabilitation for people of all ages and abilities. A graduate of Santa Clara University’s Leavey School of Business and of Empire Law School (following commendable service in the US Air Force), Phil’s 30+ years of financial and real estate experience in the North Bay make him an astute contributor to the Board and inspire him to give back to the local parks where he and his family regularly picnic, hike, and explore. An advocate for youth health and fitness, Phil’s past community service includes ten years of volunteering with the Boy Scouts and the Boys and Girls Club of Healdsburg.
Suzanne Tucker
Suzanne Tucker is a resident of Penngrove. She is active in the Petaluma Chamber of Commerce, founded their Petaluma Business Alliance, and is participating in Leadership Petaluma.  Suzanne has an MBA in Marketing and Finance from Kellogg Graduate School of Management  at Northwestern University and is the founder of  One Stop Graphics, a marketing and design company. She has assisted several regional nonprofits with fundraising strategies and event marketing. Suzanne’s favorite park experience is “just BEING in the parks walking and hiking, looking out at the vistas, at the trees and hills, hearing the birds. We are blessed to have so many beautiful places to walk – and it’s good for the soul to do so.”

 

Emeritus Board

Barbara Cooper, Past Secretary
Liz Ellis, Founding Board Member
Maureen Lynch, Past Board Member
Andy Rodgers, Past President
Kristin Thigpen, Past President

The Parks Foundation board of directors meets on the third Friday of each month at 8 a.m. Meetings are open to the public and are typically held at the second floor conference room at Sonoma County Regional Parks headquarters, 2300 County Center Drive, Santa Rosa. The agenda will be posted on this website in advance of each board meeting.