Plenty of firepower in district’s new board picks
Faced with a tough choice to pick two out of seven well-qualified candidates, the Kenwood Fire Protection District (KFPD) Board selected Daymon Doss and August Moretti to help lead the district into a rapidly changing future in fire services, and making a new five-person board.
The KFPDs historic three-person board became cumbersome over the past decade for several reasons.
First, state laws prohibit a quorum of politically elected or appointed board members from gathering in private or without public notice (Brown Act). In KFPD’s case, that means no two of the three board members can be in a room together without violating the Brown Act. That can be difficult in a small community like Kenwood, where the board members serve for decades and perhaps even grow up together.
Second, looming concerns about how to consolidate administrative, financial and personnel issues affecting Sonoma County’s 39 independent fire districts are daunting, calling for a lot of expertise and study that is impossible to apportion among members of a three-person board that can’t form subcommittees without violating state law.
In addition to Doss and Moretti, other candidates were Richard Stark, a personal insurance manager, Joseph Gruchawka, a civil litigation attorney, Gary Uboldi, a Cal Fire peace officer, Albert “Rocky” Vogler, chief engineer for North Marin Water District, and Jim Geib, a retired Cal Fire captain.
KFPD Board Members Dennis McIntosh, John Cooper, and James Kemp were very pleased at the number of applications, considering the size of the community. They interviewed the candidates in public at a special meeting on Jan. 28 at 4 p.m. at the Kenwood Fire House. Each candidate was asked questions by the directors and Fire Chief Daren Bellach, a process that took about an hour. After deliberating for a half hour in a closed session, McIntosh announced the selections of Doss and Moretti.
Daymon Doss is a familiar figure to many Kenwoodians, having lived with his wife Sally for the past 33 years at their home on the corner of Maple and Los Guilicos. He brings a deep knowledge of working with special districts, healthcare, pension planning, budgeting, and working with boards from his years as CEO of the Petaluma Health Care District, COO of the Petaluma Hospital, and many years consulting to health care districts in Northern California.
Doss earned a general AA degree from Santa Rosa Junior College in general studies, and then attended Sonoma State University, majoring in Political Science and minoring in Economics, though he did not graduate. He returned to SRJC and earned an Associate Degree in Nursing and his RN certification. When he applied to the University of the City of New York for further nursing studies, they determined he already met the requirements for a Bachelor of Science Degree and awarded it to him.
The Dosses have three children, two of which went to Kenwood School, and have five grandchildren.He currently serves on the boards of the Kenwood Community Church, the Rotary International/Petaluma Sunrise District 5130, and the Housing Land Trust, an organization that works to acquire land to build homes for teachers, firemen, police and other middle-income people who have a hard time qualifying for home loans.
August Moretti owns a second home on Adobe Canyon Road. He brings 25 years of legal practice and nearly 20 years serving as CFO to healthcare companies and as an educator at U.C. Berkeley. He is the chief financial officer for 4D Molecular Therapeutics, a technology company involved in gene therapy, and has worked in similar positions for a pharmaceutical company focused on pain and neurology, another working on pulmonary drug delivery technology, and as CFO and general counsel to a “venture-backed, development stage, biomarker discovery and personalized medicine company,” according to his curriculum vitae.
He has served on two boards previously: for Synageva (formerly AviGenics) and Appriva Medical Systems.
Moretti worked for 18 years in international law for Heller Ehrman LLP, eventually becoming a partner. Before that he was a lecturer in finance for U.C. Berkeley School of Business Administration.
Moretti earned a Bachelor of Arts from Princeton University, graduating magna cum laude in Economics, and earned his law degree at Harvard Law School.
Moretti’s wife, Audrey Kavka, M.D., is a psychoanalyst practicing in Oakland. Their sons, Michael and Matthew, live in San Francisco.
“We are tentatively looking at the regular Feb. 12 board meeting to swear them in,” Chief Bellach said, “subject to their meeting the conditions of the offer.” That basically means passing a background check already underway. Moretti has lived in Alameda County for many years but will be moving to Kenwood and registering to vote here immediately, Bellach said.
“Once they are sworn in, they can go right to work,” Bellach added.