Jan 05, 2017



Marjorie Kirn, began this week as the new Executive Director of the Santa Barbara County Association of Governments (SBCAG). Ms. Kirn, was unanimously appointed by the SBCAG Board to her position following the recent retirement of long time SBCAG Executive Director Jim Kemp.


Ms. Kirn is excited to begin her tenure as SBCAG Executive Director, “I am very honored to be selected by the SBCAG Board as the new Executive Director. I know my experience and values are a great fit for Santa Barbara County. In Merced County, I worked with our local government partners and the private sector to improve regional transportation that supports local residents and the economy. I understand the needs of the agriculture and tourism industries and will work collaboratively to expand and improve Santa Barbara County’s multi-modal transportation infrastructure.”  


Marjorie Kirn was previously the Executive Director for the Merced County Association of Governments for the past 4 years. She was Deputy Director for the agency for 12 years prior to being promoted to Executive Director. The Merced County Association of Governments is the regional transportation planning agency and metropolitan planning organization for Merced County and has an annual $35 million budget and 52 employees.


As Executive Director of the Merced County Association of Governments, Ms. Kirn was responsible for the agency’s transportation planning, highway construction, transit, rail and multi-modal, active transportation programs and the Regional Solid Waste Authority. The Merced County Association of Governments operates the regional transit service and the Yosemite Area Regional Transportation System which is a multi-county, fixed-route public transit system that has provides tourists and local residents an alternative to driving to the Yosemite region for nearly 15 years. It provides bus service into Yosemite National Park and gateway communities from Merced, Mariposa and Mammoth Lakes.


Goleta City Councilmember and SBCAG Board Chair Michael T. Bennett said “Ms. Kirn is a very experienced regional transportation professional who will be a fantastic new leader at SBCAG. This past November she led Merced County’s successful effort to gain voter approval for a transportation sales tax measure in Merced County like Measure A which was approved by Santa Barbara County voters in 2008. She knows how to get projects completed and to collaborate with local agency partners. I’m looking forward to working with her to improve transportation in Santa Barbara County.”


Santa Barbara County Supervisor Janet Wolf and SBCAG’s past Board Chair said “Marjie stood out in a field of highly qualified candidates for the position as SBCAG’s new Executive Director. She is very talented and experienced and will hit the ground running to keep the Highway 101 widening project moving forward. She has a proven track record of success and will work diligently to implement the transportation projects promised to Santa Barbara County residents in Measure A.”  


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