By SARAH SHMERLING | Editor-in-Chief
After a two-week voting period, the Pacific Palisades Community Council announced the results of the 2020 election of area and at-large representatives that will serve on the board for the 2020-22 term, beginning October 1.
There were three contested seats in this term’s election: Area 4, Area 6 and Area 7.
In Area 4, Karen Ridgley beat out Michael Minky.
“I hope to raise the awareness of my constituents to the council’s mission and resources to keep Pacific Palisades residents informed of issues that impact us all, and through the council’s expertise and influence, to empower ourselves to resolve common and local problems within our community,” Ridgley said to the Palisadian-Post following the win.
She added that she has plans to reach out to organizations and pocket neighborhoods within Area 4 to familiarize herself with their concerns.
“An example, Palisades Charter High School is within Area 4 and I’d like to explore developing a community services program for students to earn community service credits while constructively contributing support to community projects,” Ridgley added.
Matthew Quiat ran against Karyn Weber to fill the Area 6 position after candidate Jason Sklar withdrew from the race before voting opened.
“I am very grateful to have the opportunity to represent the Huntington and Via Bluffs,” Quiat shared with the Post. “It was encouraging to hear from so many residents during the campaign, and I am excited to get to work.”
He added that he is “optimistic about the future of the Palisades.” He shared plans to lead by engaging the community and seeking as much input as possible.
“I also intend to work and connect with many local resources to help enact beneficial policies,” Quiat concluded.
Area 7 went to Jenny Li who ran against Rick McGeagh to fill the spot.
“I am honored to have been elected as the Area 7 representative to the PPCC, and I am so appreciative of the support from my neighbors and fellow board members of the Santa Monica Canyon Civic Association,” Li shared with the Post. “I look forward to getting to know everyone on the PPCC and to working together to serve this very special neighborhood and community.”
Li added that she plans to reach out to McGeagh, who has served on PPCC and has made “great headway” on the fire safety issues that the area is facing.
“I promise to find ways to connect with my neighbors throughout Area 7, to listen to your concerns and to bring your voice to the PPCC,” Li wrote.
Uncontested seats went to Joanna Spak (Area 1), Steve Cron (Area 2), Haldis Toppel (Area 3), Sue Kohl (Area 5) and Alan Goldsmith (At-large).
The Area 8 seat remains vacant at this time, with the possibility of filling the space with an alternate applicant.
Due to COVID-19 restrictions, events leading up to the election, including a PPCC-hosted Candidates Forum, all took place virtually over Zoom.
“PPCC thanks all of the candidates for their willingness to participate in the public election process and commitment to serving the community, the Election Committee for responsible election management, and the entire Palisades community for supporting the democratic process by voting,” PPCC representatives shared in a statement.
The council is now accepting applications for alternate representative positions from interested community members. Individuals may apple for 1st or 2nd alternate positions, or both.
“Residents of a particular area may apply to become alternate representatives of that area,” according to a PPCC representative. “Residents, business operators or property owners in Pacific Palisades may apply for the at-large alternate position.”
Applications are reviewed by a committee of three past chairs of PPCC, and applicants may be interviewed virtually. The committee then nominates candidates for the positions, which are elected by the board at an upcoming PPCC meeting.
The deadline to submit applications is October 18 at 5 p.m. For more information or to apply, visit pacpalicc.org.