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Board Member Profiles

​​Meet the MGA Board of Directors 

Jon Kennedy, Chair, Private Well Representative             

Jon Kennedy is a long-time resident of Soquel. He is an organizational consultant, and earlier in his career was president of the California behavioral healthcare subsidiary of a major insurance company. He has participated in sustainability strategy for a number of international corporations, and is particularly interested in collaborative planning technology.

David Baskin, Vice Chair, City of Santa Cruz                           

David is a retired trial lawyer, trained mediator, arbitrator, and continuing education panelist whose legal practice focused primarily on Business, Commercial, Construction, Employment and Real Estate Law. In addition to serving on the MGA Board of Directors, David is also the alternate representative for the City of Santa Cruz on the Santa Margarita Groundwater Agency Board of Directors.  David served on the Santa Cruz City Water Commission for eight years, on the Santa Cruz City Parks and Recreation Commission, and many Santa Cruz City advisory bodies including the Water Supply Advisory Committee, the Short Term Vacation Rental Committee, the Pogonip Master Plan Advisory Committee and the West Cliff Drive Advisory Committee. 

Jim Kerr, Secretary, Private Well Representative                

Jim is a retired Aptos/La Selva Fire Captain. He is an active volunteer with local, regional, and state nonprofit organizations. Jim is a private well owner and has lived in Aptos for more than fifty years.

Curt Abramson, Private Well Representative

Curt and his family operate a small family organic farm in the Aptos Hills, Rooster Ridge Farm, growing a variety of intriguing fruit, flowers, and herbs for local restaurants, grocery stores, florists, and farmers market patrons seeking high quality, locally-sourced products. He is a real estate broker associate with Bailey Properties.  Curt enjoys quality time with his wife, children, and grandchildren, and outdoor activities year round.

Carla Christensen, Soquel Creek Water District 


Carla Christensen was appointed to the MGA Board in 2023.  A retired environmental scientist, Carla has been a member of the Soquel Creek Water District Board of Directors since 2014, and is currently Board President.  Carla is a resident of Capitola and has been an active member of the mid-county community for over 25 years, serving more than a decade on the Board of the Capitola Junior Guards.                            

Zach Friend, Supervisor, County of Santa Cruz

Supervisor Friend was elected to the Santa Cruz County Board of Supervisors in June 2012 and was selected by his fellow Board members as Chairperson for 2014. He represents the Second District, which includes Aptos, La Selva Beach, Corralitos, Seacliff, Freedom and portions of the cities of Capitola and Watsonville. A resident of Aptos, Supervisor Friend has a Masters degree in Public Policy from Georgetown University and a BA with Honors in History from the University of California, Santa Cruz. 

Fred Keeley, Mayor, City of Santa Cruz                                  

Mayor Keeley was appointed to the MGA Board in 2023.  He has served as a member of the California State Assembly, on the Santa Cruz County Board of Supervisors, and as the Santa Cruz County Treasurer.  In 2022, he was elected to a four-year term as Mayor of the City of Santa Cruz. Mayor Keeley has worked with many state and local organizations focused on the environment, including as a founding director of the Monterey Bay National Marine Sanctuary Foundation, and currently serves on the Santa Cruz Climate Action Network. 

Manu Koenig, Supervisor, County of Santa Cruz                                 

Supervisor Koenig was elected to the Santa Cruz County Board of Supervisors in 2020 and serves the First District, which includes Live Oak, Pleasure Point, Soquel Village, Happy Valley, Soquel San Jose Road, a large portion of the Summit area, as well as parts of the cities of Capitola and Santa Cruz. Prior to his election, Supervisor Koenig worked for several technology startups, was Executive Director of Santa Cruz County Greenway, worked on Measure L in Capitola to "Save Our Trestle" for bikes and pedestrians, and was CEO and Founder of Civinomics, a local startup focused on civic engagement. Born and raised in Santa Cruz, Supervisor Koenig has a Bachelor’s degree from Stanford University and lives in Live Oak.

Rachél Lather, Soquel Creek Water District


Rachél is a resident of Aptos and a civil engineer with more than 30 years of experience. She has a B.S. in Civil Engineering and an M.S. in Geotechnical Engineering from U.C. Davis. Her career has included extensive work in the geotechnical engineering field, including foundation design, slope stability, and soil and groundwater remediation projects. Rachél is currently Principal Engineer at the Carmel Area Wastewater District, serves on the Board of the Soquel Creek Water District and on the Santa Cruz Local Agency Formation Commission (LAFCO). Rachél is passionate about local water issues and believes her experience will assist the MGA in managing the resources of the Santa Cruz Mid-County Groundwater Basin. 

Robert Marani, Central Water District

Marco Romanini, Central Water District

Marco has served on the Central Water District Board of Directors since 2017.  He is a long-time Aptos resident and works tirelessly on behalf of the community.  He previously served as the volunteer lead of Neighbors Organized to Protect Our Community (NOPOC).  Marco received his BS and MS in Computer Science from CSU Chico and is a software architect.