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Advancing Community wellness in the Coachella Valley

Healthcare District Board welcomes Director Barraza and names 2023 officers

A head shot of Kimberly Barraza facing the camera. Submitted Photo

The Desert Healthcare District and Foundation will begin 2023 with new leadership.

On Tuesday, Dec. 20, the Board welcomed Kimberly Barraza (pictured) as its newest Director and elected new Board officers. Barraza, a senior district representative and policy advisor for State Assemblymember Eduardo Garcia, fills the zone 6 seat vacated by Karen Borja. She will serve a four-year term.

Barraza, who is knowledgeable about the state Legislature and budget process, brings to the Board experience working directly with community members and local, state, and federal policymakers.

"I hope to use my experience and knowledge to be able to secure financial resources and develop [a] funding mechanism that will facilitate the enhancement and expansion of health and wellness services for Coachella Valley residents, particularly those in the areas of highest needs," she said.

A resident of the Coachella Valley for 16 years, Barraza is the proud mother of two children, 16-year-old Kamilah and 9-year-old Alonzo. 

Completing the seven-member Board are Les Zendle, MD (zone 1), Carole Rogers (zone 2), Carmina Zavala (zone 3), Evett PerezGil (zone 4), Arthur Shorr (zone 5), and Leticia De Lara (zone 7). Directors PerezGil and Rogers, both incumbents, were unchallenged during the November election and were sworn in this month to serve another term.

The Board officers for 2023 are:

  • President Evett PerezGil was first elected to the Board in 2018 and served as vice-president during the past year.
  • Vice-President Carmina Zavala, PsyD, MA, was elected to the Board in 2020 and recently served as Board secretary.
  • Secretary Carole Rogers, RN, MPH, was first elected to the Board in 2014.
  • Treasurer Arthur Shorr, who resumes his Board responsibilities, was appointed to serve in 2019.

President PerezGil will confer with Board Directors during the next week to determine committee assignments.

"Congratulations to Director Barraza and the Board officers," Desert Healthcare District and Foundation CEO Conrado Barzaga said. "The staff and I are excited about the Board that's in place for 2023, and we look forward to receiving the Directors' guidance and support as we continue our work to advance community health and wellness for all Coachella Valley residents."

About the Desert Healthcare District and Foundation

The Desert Healthcare District is a local government agency formed in 1948. Its mission is to achieve optimal health at all stages of life for all District residents. The District includes more than 400,000 residents and encompasses the entire Coachella Valley. The District and Desert Healthcare Foundation, together, are one of the largest funders in the valley. These funds are used to assist residents — especially the underserved — in accessing vitally needed resources, such as primary and behavioral healthcare. Learn more at