At the Helix Water District Board of Directors Meeting on January 5, 2022, the board elected Director Kathleen Coates Hedberg to serve as board president in 2022 and Director DeAna Verbeke to serve as vice president.

Hedberg, who is a third generation water professional and licensed civil engineer with a master’s degree in public health, was elected to the board in 2006 and represents Helix’s division 4, which includes La Mesa and the communities of Casa De Oro, Mt. Helix and Calavo Gardens. In 2021, Hedberg chaired the district’s finance and administration committee and was vice chair of the water quality and resources committee. She was Helix’s representative to the East County Advanced Water Purification Program Joint Powers Authority and served on other regional and statewide committees.

“This is an honor. This is the first time in Helix’s over 100 year history that the board president and vice president are both women,” Hedberg said. “Just last month, the Association of California Water Agencies membership also elected women as president and vice president for the first time. This is an exciting time and why I support the annual Women in Water Symposium at Cuyamaca College. The water industry is where you should be if you want to help your community and make a difference every day.”

Verbeke has served on Helix’s board since 2005 and represents the district’s division 2 customers in La Mesa, the Mt. Helix community and El Cajon. Last year, Verbeke chaired Helix’s engineering and operations committee, was the region 10 chair for the Association of California Water Agencies and served on multiple committees while representing Helix with east county and regional organizations.

Helix General Manager Carlos Lugo thanked outgoing president Joel Scalzitti for his leadership throughout 2021, and president Hedberg echoed his comments. For more information on the district’s accomplishments last year, read our Fiscal Year 2020-21 Annual Report.

Hedberg assumed her new position immediately after the election and led the board meeting.  One of her first tasks is determining board committee assignments for the year ahead. Helix board members represent the district and its customers on the San Diego County Water Authority board and participate in water resources planning, policy-making and funding decisions on regional and statewide committees.

For more information on Helix’s board of directors go to


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