LOS ANGELES--()--Three new members representing Central Basin Municipal Water District and Upper San Gabriel Valley Municipal Water District were seated today on the board of directors of the Metropolitan Water District of Southern California.
Robert O. Apodaca and Leticia Vásquez were sworn in as Central Basin’s representatives, joining Michael Touhey of Upper San Gabriel Valley as new members to Metropolitan’s 37-member board.
Apodaca returns to Metropolitan’s board, where he represented Central Basin from June 2003 to August 2009. He replaces Rudy C. Montalvo, who had served on the MWD board since July 2010. Vásquez succeeds Phillip D. Hawkins, who had represented Central Basin since January 2008. Touhey follows Stephen Millard, who had served on the Metropolitan board since January 2012.
At Metropolitan, Apodaca was appointed to the board’s Organization, Personnel and Technology Committee, and Communications and Legislation Committee, while Vásquez was named to the Finance and Insurance Committee, Legal and Claims Committee, and Real Property and Asset Management Committee. Touhey joins the board’s Finance and Insurance Committee and Water Planning and Stewardship Committee.
A social services worker, Apodaca was first elected to Central Basin’s board of directors in November 1998 and re-elected in November 2010 to represent the cities of La Habra Heights, La Mirada, Norwalk, Santa Fe Springs, Whittier and South Whittier. He is a past president of Central Basin’s board.
Apodaca serves as a member of the Association of California Water Agencies, the San Gabriel Watermaster, the San Gabriel Valley Protective Association and the Central Basin Water Association. A graduate of Woodbury University, Apodaca co-founded Nosotros, a non-profit organization dedicated to improving the image of Latinos and Hispanics in the entertainment industry
Vásquez was elected to Central Basin’s board in June 2012, representing the cities and communities of Lynwood, South Gate, Florence-Graham, Willowbrook, Compton and Carson. Prior to joining Central Basin’s board, she served as a Lynwood city councilmember. In 2005, she became Lynwood's first Latina mayor.
A political science professor at El Camino College, the Compton Education Center and National University, Vásquez earned a bachelor’s degree in criminal justice and a master’s degree in public policy and administration in urban affairs from California State University, Long Beach and a master's degree in education from Pepperdine University.
A small business owner, Touhey was elected to Upper San Gabriel Valley’s board of directors last November to represent all or parts of Azusa, Covina, Glendora, Irwindale and West Covina. After his election to the Upper San Gabriel Valley seat, he resigned from the West Covina City Council, for which he served as a city councilmember since 1994, including four one-year terms as mayor.
Touhey attended Mt. San Antonio College, Azusa Pacific University and Biola University. He was the 1994 Rotarian of the year and the 1995 West Covina PTA Volunteer of the Year. Touhey also has received the Community Service Award from the National Association for the Advancement of Colored People and was named West Covina’s Hometown Hero in 2001.
The Metropolitan Water District of Southern California is a cooperative of 26 cities and water agencies serving nearly 19 million people in six counties. The district imports water from the Colorado River and Northern California to supplement local supplies, and helps its members to develop increased water conservation, recycling, storage and other resource-management programs.
Note to editors: Digital photographs of the new Metropolitan directors are available upon request.