Famulener Takes Over as President of Moraga-Orinda Fire District Board
By Nick Marnell
K. Famulener Photo provided
If Kathleen Famulener broke through the glass ceiling when she became the first woman to join the Moraga-Orinda Fire District board three years ago, she shattered the remainder of the building Jan. 4 when she was elected the first female president of the MOFD board of directors.
"I am very proud and honored to be elected," Famulener said, as she urged more women to come to the district meetings and to run for the board seats as well. Famulener noted that the MOFD board had been a very closed system, and one of the goals of her presidency was to make the district more welcoming to all.
"And we must keep the district sustainable while fairly compensating our firefighters," Famulener said.
The new president will lead a board whose actions make clear that the district finances will fall under intense scrutiny. The first official act of the new administration was to elect directors Brad Barber and Steve Anderson to the district finance committee, and immediately afterward it created two financial ad hoc committees: one to address the district's financial reporting and the other to review the MOFD pension plan.
Barber said that items for board action that have financial implications for the district need to be presented to the finance committee for a full and open discussion before the items go to the full board. "I hope the finance committee will be able to meet somewhat more frequently in the coming year with the objective of making the financial aspects of the district as clear, understandable and useful as possible to the various constituencies of the district, including the public, employees and retirees," he said.
With both showcasing extensive business experience, the two newest directors were appointed to the ad hoc committees. "The pension review ad hoc committee is tasked with learning everything there is to know about MOFD's retirement plans from all parties' perspectives so we can explain it to both the board and the voting public," said director Craig Jorgens, appointed with Barber to the pension review committee and with director John Jex to the financial reporting committee. Jex said that the committee will focus on the resolution of MOFD financial reporting issues and on the completion of the annual financial report, which the district has yet to approve for 2105-16.