Governor Schwarzenegger Appoints Ruth Coleman Director and the Staff of the Department of Parks and Recreation
Governor Arnold Schwarzenegger today announced the appointments of Ruth Coleman as director, Paul Romero as chief deputy director, Sedrick Von Mitchell as deputy director of external affairs, Grace Daniel as deputy director of partnerships and economic development, Roy Stearns as deputy director of communications, Daphne Greene as deputy director of off-highway motor vehicle recreation, Rosario Cortés as assistant director of legislation, Milford "Wayne" Donaldson as state historic preservation officer, and James Walsh as special assistant to the Director at the Department of Parks and Recreation. "California's parks are an invaluable resource to the people of this state," said Governor Schwarzenegger. "I am pleased that these individuals with their diverse backgrounds share my commitment to work to preserve and improve the system." Ruth Coleman has served as director of the Department of Parks and Recreation since 2003. She previously served as chief deputy director and deputy director for legislation from 1999 to 2002. Coleman was policy director for Assemblywoman Helen Thomson from 1998 to 1999 and legislative director for Senator Mike Thompson from 1996 to 1998. She also served as a senior consultant to the Senate Committee on River Protection and Restoration and the Senate Natural Resources and Wildlife Committee between 1993 and 1995. Coleman was an air pollution research specialist at the Air Resources Board from 1991 to 1993 and a fiscal and policy analyst at the Office of the Legislative Analyst from 1988 to 1991. Before joining state government, she was a research associate for the Energy and Environmental Policy Center at the Kennedy School of Government from 1987 to 1988. Coleman was also a consultant for the World Resources Institute and a member of the Peace Corps serving in the Kingdom of Swaziland where she was a planning officer for the Ministry of Natural Resources. She received her bachelor's degree from Occidental College and a master of public administration from Harvard University's John F. Kennedy School of Government. Coleman, 43, is a resident of Davis and a registered Democrat. This position requires Senate confirmation and the compensation is $123,255. Paul Romero has served as chief administrative officer for the Santa Clara Valley Water District since 2002. He was previously director of the Santa Clara County Parks and Recreation Department from 1995 to 2002. During his tenure, Romero also served as acting director of the county's Environmental Resource Agency from 1999 to 2001. He worked in the County of Riverside Parks and Recreation Department from 1972 to 1995, serving his final 10 years as the Department's director. Romero was vice president of the National Association of Park and Recreation Officials, president of the California Association of County Park Open Space Officials, and chairman of the National Recreation Trails Advisory Committee. He earned a bachelor of science and a Master of Arts from California State University, Long Beach. Romero, 57, is a resident of Folsom and a registered Democrat. This position does not require Senate confirmation and the compensation is $118,284. Sedrick Von Mitchell has served as deputy director at the Department of Parks and Recreation since 1999. He was previously district office chief of staff for Senator Patrick Johnston from 1996 to 1999 and senior consultant to the Senate Appropriations Committee from 1994 to 1996. Mitchell was Senator Johnston's field representative from 1985 to 1994 and a regional supervisor and program manager for San Joaquin County from 1984 to 1985. He is a board member of the National Association of State Outdoor Recreation Liaison Officers, and a member of the California Park and Recreation Society as well as the California State Parks Foundation. Mitchell received his bachelor's degree from California State University, Stanislaus and holds a certificate from the University of Southern California, California Leadership Institute. Mitchell, 42, is a resident of Stockton and a registered Democrat. This position does not require Senate confirmation and the compensation is $104,640. Grace Daniel has been a principal of Golden State Management/Marketing Services since 1999. Before joining this specialty markets consulting firm, she was a member of the California Agricultural Labor Relations Board from 1997 to 1999. Daniel served under Governor Pete Wilson as chief deputy appointments secretary from 1995 to 1997 and was executive director and small business advocate for the Office of Small Business at the Trade and Commerce Agency from 1991 to 1995. She was with Golden State Management/Marketing Services as a principle from 1983 to 1991 and associate director for government affairs for Atlantic Richfield Company from 1972 to 1983. Daniel was also a presidential appointee to the Federal Agricultural Mortgage Corporation. She received her bachelor's degree from Pepperdine University and a master's of public administration from the University of Southern California. Daniel, 58, is a resident of El Macero and a registered Republican. This position does not require Senate confirmation and the compensation is $89,520. Roy Stearns has served as deputy director of communications for the Department since 2000. He was previously with KCRA Television News in Sacramento from 1980 to 2000 as a news program producer and senior news reporter. Stearns was an anchorman, executive news producer, news director, and general assignment reporter for KSBW Television News in Salinas from 1969 to 1980. He was a commissioned officer in the United States Army from 1966 to 1969 and served in Vietnam. Stearns has received a number of awards and honors for journalism including the Radio-Television News Director's Association Edward R. Murrow Award for reporting excellence. He received his bachelor's degree from South Dakota State University and attended the U.S. Army Command and General Staff College. Stearns, 60, is a resident of Roseville and a registered Democrat. This position does not require Senate confirmation and the compensation is $96,816. Daphne Greene has been the owner of Twende, an adventure consulting company that coordinates and manages off-highway education programs for major vehicle manufacturers, since 1994. She served on the California Off-Highway Vehicle Recreation Commission from 2000 to 2003 and as chair from 2001 to 2003. Greene was previously a guide and marketing assistant for Southern Yosemite Mountain Guides from 1993 to 1994, a sales associate and manager for The North Face from 1992 to 1994, and director of sales and marketing for Beachside and Beyond from 1990 to 1992. She holds a bachelor's degree from Georgetown University's School of Foreign Service. Greene, 42, is a resident of San Rafael and a registered Democrat. This position does not require Senate confirmation and the compensation is $106,548. Rosario Cortés has been a legislative advocate with the firm of Nossaman, Guthner, Knox and Elliot since 2001. She was previously a legislative analyst for the Association of California Water Agencies from 1999 to 2001. Cortés was a Senate fellow for the Senate Committee on Agricultural and Water Resources and legislative aide to Senator Jim Costa from 1998 to 1999. She received her bachelor's degree in community and regional development from the University of California, Davis. Cortés, 27, is a resident of Sacramento and a registered Republican. This position does not require Senate confirmation and the compensation is $81,420. Milford "Wayne" Donaldson has served as president of Architect Milford Wayne Donaldson, FAIA since 1978, specializing in historic renovation and preservation and adaptive reuse of existing structures. Donaldson was previously an instructor of architecture at Southwestern Community College from 1976 to 1984. He was also an associate architect for Moser Drew Watson AIA from 1972 to 1978 and an instructor in architecture at California Polytechnic State University, San Luis Obispo from 1969 to 1970. Donaldson is licensed to practice architecture in California, Nevada and Arizona and holds a certified license from the National Council of Architectural Registration Boards. He is affiliated with several historical and preservation organizations including the Historic State Capitol Commission, the National Trust for Historic Preservation, the Building Standards Commission, and the State Historic Resources Commission. Donaldson holds a Bachelor of Science in architecture and a Bachelor of Science in engineering from California Polytechnic State University, San Luis Obispo. He received a master of science in architecture from University of Strathclyde, Scotland, and a master of arts in history from University of California, San Diego. Donaldson, 60, is a resident of San Diego and a registered Republican. This position does not require Senate confirmation and the compensation is $101,508. James Walsh was most recently national account manager for Air-Paq, a start-up specializing in packaging materials. He was previously an account manager for M&M Mars Southwest Region from 1988 to 2002. Walsh received his bachelor's degree from the University of Arizona. Walsh, 41, is a resident of Sacramento and a registered Republican. This position does not require Senate confirmation and the compensation is $73,000. The Department of Parks and Recreation is responsible for preserving California's extraordinary biological diversity, natural and cultural resources, and high quality outdoor recreational opportunities. The State Park system consists of 266 units including parks, beaches, trails, wildlife areas, open spaces, off-highway vehicle area and historic sites. The department has an annual budget of approximately $1 billion with over 3,000 employees.