Meet the Board

We are dedicated to growing the Monrovia Parks, Recreation and Wilderness Foundation

Our Board is passionate about developing the resources for our city to support and improve community programs, parks, facilities, and expand and protect open spaces in Monrovia.

Brian Ulm

President

Brian Ulm relocated from Ohio in 1999, driven by a search for a city with a strong sense of community and access to wilderness and hiking he selected to purchase a home in Monrovia. After arriving, the former Ohio Sierra club leader learned that Monrovia’s foothills were under threat of development. He became part of a community movement speaking out against development at public meetings along with other Monrovians, eventually convincing the city leadership to support protection instead of development. A special election was planned for Monrovian’s to decide if they would support a tax to fund the purchase and protection of these spaces. Brian joined the Yes on A&B committee formed to educate voters, leading tabling every Friday night at Monrovia’s family festival. After the measure passed and properties were purchased, management fell to the Community Services Commission. Brian joined the commission serving 13 years during which time the resource management plan and a new city park master plan were completed. Brian is thrilled to continue his work in support of Monrovia’s cherished park, wilderness and recreation resources as part of the MPWR Board.

Julie Bank

Secretary

Julie Bank is the Director of Riverside County Animal Services and has worked for 30 years in animal welfare in New York, Arizona, Oklahoma, and California.  She is active in the community serving on the Community Services Commission, as a Rotarian, as a PTA mom and a Clifton Middle School Arts Academy.  She is  a proud mom to a 12-year-old who is  active on the MHMBT, a  Volunteer at Canyon Park, as a scout with Troop 66, as a City Youth Commissioner and a MAP leader. Her family includes two dogs, 2 cats and a bearded dragon.  They love to explore the Monrovia outdoors including looking at the amazing architecture on walks, visiting the Canyon Park waterfall, biking in the HWP, and having weekend picnics in the amazing Monrovia parks.

Donna Baker

Program & Events Committee Chair

Donna Baker has lived in Monrovia for over 34 years. What drives her passion for Monrovia is the small-town community connections. Being involved is her calling! Donna’s past volunteer experiences include 20 years as an Historic Preservation Commissioner; serving on the Boards of the Boys & Girls Club, the YMCA and Habitat for Humanity; and financially supporting many charitable organizations in town. She was also a volunteer and staunch supporter of Measures A & B to save Monrovia’s wilderness area and as a local Realtor, encourages nature lovers to consider moving to Monrovia to enjoy all it has to offer in our outdoor spaces. Now, as part of the MPWR Foundation, Ms. Baker is excited to work on improving our outdoor spaces in collaboration with the City. Donna says “It’s exciting to imagine what lies ahead for our City’s Parks, Wilderness Preserve and Recreation programs. I’m so proud to be a part of Monrovia’s future!”

Giangelo Leos

Communications Committee Co-Chair

Giangelo R. Leos is the Community Initiatives & Program Director at Food Exploration & Discovery, a non-profit in Monrovia that provides food and garden focused education to schools and communities in the San Gabriel Valley. A life-long Monrovian and graduate of Monrovia schools, Giangelo is a product of the great parks, programs, and wilderness in town that provided spaces to learn and play during his formative years. Giangelo serves on the Monrovia Community Services Commission, is a member of the Monrovia Community Garden leadership team, and served as the volunteer director of the Monrovia Young Musicians Ensemble for eight years. In other local volunteer capacities, he is a certified California Naturalist, UC Climate Steward, Master Herpetologist, and a member of CA Rare Fruit Growers. He holds a Master of Library and Information Science degree with a research focus on botanical libraries. On weekends you can find him hiking the Hillside Wilderness Preserve with his wife and pup.

Edward Belden

Edward Belden loves spending time in parks, open spaces and promoting the multitude of benefits they provide. His work has spanned from the leaves of plants to the plans of cities working in the public, private and non-profit sectors. He is an environmental professional with experience in implementing green infrastructure projects, watershed monitoring, environmental analysis, trail planning, restoration, green building, sustainability, recreation improvements, and youth-focused programs. Currently working to Restore and Revitalize the LA River with the City of Los Angeles, he also serves on the Monrovia Community Services Commission. Edward is a native of Monrovia who loves observing nature, hiking, biking, and making ice cream in his spare time. He holds a B.S. in Biology from Hobart College and a Master’s in Environmental Science and Management from UC Santa Barbara.

Trudy Trimmer

Trudy Trimmer has made Monrovia home since 1990.  Relocated from the East Coast in 1983, the small town feel and open spaces provided in Monrovia was what a young family was looking for.  Trudy worked for City of Hope for 27 years and Caltech for the past 2.5 years as a Grants Manager.  In raising her two daughters, Trudy was active in PTA, Girl Scout Leader, various team mom positions with local sports teams and dance teams, and National Team Leader for Avon39 Walk to End Breast Cancer to name a few.  Trudy and her husband, Mark, hike the Wilderness Preserve area regularly and enjoy being outdoors camping and hiking.   As part of MPWR, Trudy looks forward to promoting and supporting the unique outdoor spaces, programs, and services provided here in Monrovia.

Jillian Gomez

Jillian Gomez is a native Monrovian who believes that open communal spaces and nature are healing for individuals and society as a whole. She is currently an Artistic Recruiter for Dreamworks Animation, a job where she gets to make daily connections between people. Jillian grew up volunteering at the Monrovia Public Library, was an original member of Centre Stage Inc.,Centre Stage Dance Academy, and was a Citrus Singer at Citrus College before finishing her degree at UC Berkeley. As a part of the MPWR board, Jillian is excited to give back to the community where she grew up by helping make strong connections between the City, its citizens, and its open spaces. She spends her weekends gardening in her front yard garden and walking her 2 dogs with her husband.

Michele Bernal

Michele Bernal is a native of Southern California, and after 21 years working on the east coast, has been thrilled to call Monrovia home for the past 2 years.  She completed MAP Leadership training, and found that the more you learn about Monrovia, the more you love Monrovia.  She met other amazing MAP leaders and was looking for opportunities to work with them and give back to the community.  As member of the MPWR board, Michele is excited to support the continued improvement of our open spaces and ensuring that recreation is open and available to all.  She has served as treasurer on several other non-profit boards and is happy to use those skills to help the mission.  She also tutors at the Boys & Girls Club of the Foothills.  Michele enjoys hiking the Clamshell trail and is looking forward to the reopening of Canyon Park.  She also likes gardening, cooking, reading, and hanging out with her friends, husband and 16 year old son. She works remotely as an actuary responsible for pricing oversight for the US property & casualty operations of an insurance company based in Germany.

Interesting in joining our board? Find out more here!