Bob Wright

Bob Wright was appointed to the East Valley Coalition Manager’s position in March of 2016 by Supervisor John J. Benoit. He comes from a forty-five year career in the nursery industry and served as CEO of DTF INC. a nursery brokerage firm. Bob has served as a Commissioner with the City of La Quinta for the past twenty two years and he has close ties with the cities of Indio, Coachella and La Quinta. As well as managing the EVC, he also serves as a Riverside County EDA Specialist 3 and as Assistant Director of Riverside Counties Coachella Valley Small Business Development Center in Indio California. He still serves as President of the Coachella Valley Housing Coalition and a Board member of the SSAC, GCV, FODM, OTAS and the CVRCD. Bob is married and has two grown Children in Salt Lake City, and two teenagers in high school in La Quinta. Bob has had a home on Lake Mead for the past twenty years and is passionate about Colorado River water and recreation.


Emmanuel Martinez

Government Affairs Specialist, Imperial Irrigation District

Emmanuel Martinez is the government affairs specialist at the Imperial Irrigation District.

In this capacity, he is responsible for coordinating the district’s governmental affairs programs and activities to maximize the value of the IID’s water and energy resource portfolio. To this end, he promotes IID policies, programs and initiatives through liaison, communication, coordination and interaction with federal, state, regional and local governmental and legislative agencies.

Prior to joining the district, he worked on legislative bills and issues in the California state capitol as legislative director to Assemblyman Eduardo Garcia, and legislative aide to Assemblyman V. Manuel Perez.

Mr. Martinez is a graduate from the University of California at Riverside where he earned a bachelor’s degree in business administration and economics in 2006.


Mayor Linda Evans

Mayor Linda Evans is a California native and moved to La Quinta in March 2003. She was appointed to the City Council in June 2009 to complete a term through November 2010. She was elected to the City Council in 2010; and elected Mayor in 2014. In March 2016, she was named “Woman of the Year” for the 42nd Assembly District by Assemblyman Chad Mayes for the State of California. This recognition was granted for the outstanding contributions and service Linda has provided to her community.

Mayor Evans has worked in the healthcare industry for over twenty eight years, spending the last twenty one years in hospital administration. She is the Chief Development Officer at JFK Memorial Hospital in Indio and has worked for JFK’s parent company, Tenet Healthcare Corporation, at four other hospitals in Southern California since 1995.

Mayor Evans received a Bachelor’s Degree in Communications/Public Relations from California State University, Fullerton. She holds two Master’s Degrees: one in Health Administration and the other in Gerontology, both obtained from the University of La Verne, California.

Linda is the Chairman of the Joint Powers Authority Board of the Greater Palm Springs Convention and Visitors Bureau, Chair of the Coachella Valley Association of Governments (CVAG) Energy and Environmental Committee and serves on the CVAG Conservation Commission and Executive Committee. She is also a Board Member of Food in Need of Distribution (F.I.N.D.) Food Bank, and recognizes the importance of good nutrition, being healthy, and the impact on a prosperous community.
She was a panelist for the 2016 Clinton Health Matters Summit; highlighting the outstanding infrastructure La Quinta has developed to be a center of health innovation for its residents.

Linda is health focused and community driven. She has ignited the engagement of La Quinta residents in her Mayoral position. She and Council are leaders in redefining the structure and service delivery of local government through reorganization and technological advances. She connects public safety and economic development with health and wellness, and promotes empowerment into her values and decision-making.

Linda and her husband, Tim, have been married twenty years.


John Peña

John Peña began his public service in 1982, when he served on a school site task force with city and school district officials to locate school sites in the City of La Quinta. Elected to the La Quinta City Council in 1984, he served on the Council until his retirement from public office in December 2002. John came out of his retirement and was again elected to the City Council in 2014.

John currently serves as a member of the Coachella Valley Animal Campus Commission and, during his previous terms of office, has served on various Boards and Commissions throughout the Coachella Valley including: Sunline Transit Agency Executive Board), the Coachella Valley Association of Governments, the Palm Springs/Desert Resorts Convention & Visitors Bureau, Riverside County Transportation Commission, Court Appointed Special Advocates, La Quinta Chamber of Commerce, Local Agency Formation Commission, Riverside County Commission on Education, La Quinta High School Foundation, Children’s Discovery Museum, Carreon Foundation, Workforce Development, and John F. Kennedy Memorial Hospital.

A lifelong Coachella Valley resident, John graduated from Indio High School and attended College of the Desert where he was inducted into the Alumni Hall of Fame. He earned a Bachelor of Arts Degree from California State University, Fullerton and continued his postgraduate work at Western State University College of Law where he received his law degree.

John has received many honors including selection by the Jewish Federation to travel to Israel for the International Conference of Mayors, Distinguished Citizen of the Year by the Boy Scouts of America, Distinguished Recipient Honoree of the Annual Hispanic Awards.

John is Principal of John Peña & Associates, a business and governmental relations consulting firm. His wife Sherry is CEO of Emerald Presidio, Inc., a family-owned food service business that includes Desert Cities Catering and food services consulting. They have two children. John currently holds a position as the California Territory Manager for Verizon FiOS.