Saturday, February 24 , 2018, 12:51 pm | Fair 58º


Human Services Commission of Santa Barbara County Welcomes New Commissioners

Suzy Cawthon
Sharon Siegel

Sharrie Suzanne “Suzy” Cawthon, Sharon Siegel and Jessica Tade have been appointed to the Human Services Commission of Santa Barbara County, each beginning a two-year term.

Selected for their diverse interests and community involvement, the new commissioners join a group of individuals dedicated to changing the lives of Santa Barbara County residents through public service.  

“Suzy, Sharon and Jessica bring great energy to an already dynamic board,” said Commission Chair Julie Kessler Solomon. “Working together, the members of the Human Services Commission make recommendations for the allocation of funds that provide nonprofit organizations with the opportunity to make real change in our community.”   

Representing the first district, Cawthon is the owner of the Santa Barbara Jazzercise franchise. She has also worked as a corporate event manager for a Goleta high tech company.

She began her career in Dallas, working as a commercial lender specializing in radio, television and cable acquisition financing.

Cawthon is a dedicated community volunteer, currently serving as a board member for the AHA Heart Walk, the Planned Parenthood Action Fund and the Summerland Citizen’s Association.

She has volunteered for Domestic Violence Solutions, was the chair of the Measure V Bond Oversight Committee and served as the PTA president at both San Marcos and Santa Barbara high schools.

While living in Billings, Mont., Suzy was committed to fundraising for public school programs and she became the development director for the city’s YWCA. She later served as the school board president for District #8, and was the PTA president seven times.

Cawthon was born in Dallas, Texas, but grew up in Anaheim, Calif. She received both her bachelor’s and master’s degrees in business administration from Baylor University. She is the mother of three grown children and is a Summerland resident.

Representing the second district, Siegel is the retired district director for Congresswoman Lois Capps. Prior to that, she served as the district director for the late Congressman Walter Capps.

She has also worked as a talent agent and casting director in both Los Angeles and New York before her relocation to Santa Barbara in 1990.

A passionate community volunteer, Siegel has given her time to the Grace Lutheran Church food distribution program, and was approached by Lutheran Services of Southern California to serve as the area director for Santa Barbara and Ventura counties.

Siegel was born and raised in Kansas City, Mo. She enjoys traveling and spending time with her family.

Jessica Tade

Representing the third district, Tade is the director of marketing and communications for the Santa Barbara City College Foundation, an organization dedicated to providing support for Santa Barbara City College and its students. In this role, she manages public relations and marketing aspects of the foundation’s current strategic plan.

Previously, Tade was the director of communications and marketing for the Santa Barbara Foundation, a community foundation with assets totaling more than $300 million. She modernized and expanded communications, establishing a social media presence and coalescing the foundation’s brand.

She has also worked as an associate editor for the McGraw-Hill Companies, developing both fine art and computer technology educational textbooks, and as an archivist for the Architecture and Design Collection at the UC Santa Barbara Art, Design & Architecture Museum. 

Tade is a current volunteer scholarship interviewer for the Scholarship Foundation of Santa Barbara; a past Steering Committee member for the Business Giving Roundtable and a past Steering Committee member, Marketing Committee co-chair and communications coach for Fast Pitch SB.

She is also a past Steering Committee member for Partnership for Excellence, a yearly conference bringing together leaders from Santa Barbara County’s philanthropic sector in order to build relationships and explore ideas, strategies and skills that enhance nonprofit organizations and their work.

Tade is a three-time graduate of UCSB, where she received a doctor of philosophy degree in art history specializing in Romanesque architecture and sculpture.  

The new commissioners join a dedicated group including Julie Kessler Solomon, commission chair (third district); Michele Mickiewicz, commission vice chair (second district); Oscar Sepulveda (first district); Carol Keator (first district); Lucille Ramirez (second district); Joan Marie Fairfield (third district); Ruth Jensen (fourth district); Chrissy Allen (fifth district); Deborah-Ann Aceves (fifth district) and Linda Lindner (fifth district).  

Susan Foley represents the Human Services Commission of Santa Barbara County

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