IMPERIAL â€” Imperial Valley native Alan Phillips has been named chief executive officer of the 45th District Agricultural Association and Imperial Valley Expo, home of the California Mid-Winter Fair and Fiesta.Â He will be starting his new job in October.
Phillips, who currently is coordinator of Education Technology for the Imperial County Office of Education, is also a director and current president of the California Mid-Winter Fair Heritage Foundation.
He will be stepping down from that position and resigning from the foundation when he steps in to his new role. The foundation, an independent nonprofit organization, was formed in 2012 as a support organization to help sustain the future of the fair and fairground facilities.
Phillips also has been involved in the fair in other ways, both as a parent and as a performer. He has appeared there in numerous performances over a 15 year span as a local musician, and for the past four years both his children have been involved in the junior livestock program.
â€œWe are extremely excited and thrilled to bring a local resident on board as CEO,â€ said Joe Montenegro, fair board president. â€œAlan has been actively involved in our fair for a number of years and brings a unique perspective to the job. He applied his technology background to help us implement processes that greatly improved the efficiency and accounting of fair concession sales. As CEO, this expertise will be critical as we move into the future.â€
Phillipsâ€™ role at ICOE has been in training teachers and administrators across the county in how to use technology to make them more effective in their jobs. He also had a critical role in development of a statewide high speed network to provide internet access and application coordination to Californiaâ€™s K-12 schools.
â€œMr. Phillips has been instrumental in the success of several local and statewide initiatives in education,â€ said County Superintendent of Schools Todd Finnell. â€œHe is respected throughout the state for his work with schools, and has had a significant impact on our local schools over the years. I look forward to his leadership as he strengthens the role of the fair in our community.â€
Phillips, who was born in Calexico, grew up in Holtville and is a graduate of Holtville High School. He went to Imperial Valley College and is a graduate of San Diego State University in Calexico.
In addition to membership in a variety of local bands, Phillips just began his thirtieth season as a football official.
He has been at ICOE for 19 years and before that, Â spent 12 years in the Holtville Unified School District.
â€œOur fair is one of the most important assets we have in this county,â€ Phillips said. â€œIts primary purpose is to provide year-round access to activities that showcase the talents, products and cultural wealth of our communities. That is really a form of community education and I am looking forward to working with the great board, staff and volunteers who make that happen.â€
Phillips replaces Theresa Garcia who announced in June she would be stepping down after eight years to spend more time with her family in Northern California. Her final day will be September 30.
â€œAs much as we hate losing Theresa, we are positive that Alan will step in and continue the great things she has accomplished while here,â€ Montenegro said.