Raquel Gonzales is the “go to person” for the over 300 residents in the mobile home park she manages. She has earned that community’s trust with dedicated service and commitment to fairness. When people have questions or are having difficulties they ask Raquel for advice and assistance. She is also an active parent in the local schools, which has made her aware of the need to serve in a different capacity. She is considering running for school board sometime in the future. She and her husband, Pedro, and two older children are very active in different leadership roles at La Purisima Church and as coaches, parent leaders, and referees in the local AYSO. Raquel motivates her children, especially Fabiola the oldest, to be civic minded and volunteer in the community. She is a graduate of UCSB and understands the importance of education, advocacy and basic skills to becoming self sufficient.
Pastor Valley of the Flowers UCC
Rev. Chuck Arnold is currently pastor of the Valley of the Flowers UCC. He has served other churches in Lompoc and parish churches in South Dakota, and New York. He holds a Master’s Degree in Counseling Psychology, and served as a U.S.A.F. Chaplain for 21 years. He has done domestic violence prevention, and parenting training as well as serving a hospital. He and his wife Barbara are actively involved in the Lompoc Community. They won the Santa Barbara County Action Network Social Justice Award for 2012.
Maria Garcia-Cacique has been the Migrant Education Program, Region 18 Director since spring 2005. She enjoys providing services to children of farm workers who seek work in agriculture or fishing. In 2009, she was selected as fellow in the Santa Barbara Foundation Katherine Harvey Fellowship Program, and Secretary of the American GI Forum Women of California Chapter in 2011. She is currently continuing her commitment to community by volunteering to Chair the Grants Committee of Lompoc Co-op Development Project.
Lompoc City Administrator, Retired
Gary Keefe currently serves as Board member for the Santa Barbara County American Red Cross, Santa Barbara County Human Services Commissioner, and Juvenile Justice/Delinquency Prevention Commissioner for Santa Barbara County Superior Court. In 2008, he retired as Lompoc City Administrator. He is a past chair of the Central Coast Area City Manager’s Association, Lompoc Valley National Management Association, and Kiwanis Club of Lompoc Valley. He also served for two years as a Santa Barbara County Grand Juror.
Author and Community Organizer
John McReynolds’ non-fiction has appeared in more than a dozen Central Coast publications. His sports writing has gone national in The National Pastime, Grandstand Baseball Annual, and Elysian Fields Quarterly. He received the MacMillan Award (1997), the Robert Peterson Award (1998) from the Society for Baseball Research, and was a finalist in the Environment and Agriculture category of the California Newspaper Publishers competition in 2009. His first book, Lompoc: Padres to Pinot, was published in 2009, Vanished, Lompoc’s Japanese in 2010, and Seasons of Jalama earlier this year.