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New Board Members Join College of the Desert Foundation
Community Leaders Help Support the College

Three distinguished members of the local community have recently joined the College of the Desert Foundation Board to offer their support for the college in the community. New board members are government and higher education leaders, civic and community leaders, and College of the Desert (COD) alumni.  They include: Dan Martinez, Marge Dodge and Michael O’Neil.

“We are thrilled to welcome these talented and committed leaders to the Foundation board of directors,” said Donna Jean Darby, COD Foundation Board President. “They each bring unique backgrounds and experiences to the board as well as a passion for education that will strengthen our work and accomplishments.”
Dan Martinez is the City Manager of Indio. He graduated from Indio High School and COD before attending California State University San Bernardino (CSUSB) where he graduated with a Bachelor’s degree in Business Administration in 1986. Mr. Martinez also graduated from the San Bernardino Valley College Extended Police Academy in 1995 and served as a Welfare Fraud Investigator and Supervising Fraud Investigator while employed with the County Department of Public Social Services. Prior to serving as Indio's City Manager, Mr. Martinez worked for the County of Riverside as Managing Director of the Economic Development Agency (EDA).
Marge Dodge retired in 2004 from IBM after a 30 year career in technical sales, consulting and project management. She serves on the board and is member of Friends of the College of the Desert Library, Palm Springs Writers Guild and National League of American Pen Women. Ms. Dodge is also a free-lance writer for La Quinta Life Magazine and guest reporter for The Desert Sun Desert Scene section.
Michael O’Neil is a member of the Desert Community College District board of trustees. He previously worked for College of the Desert in a variety of positions including as Director of Disabled Students Programs and Services. In 2008, Mr. O’Neil retired as an Emeritus Professor, after 39 years as an educator in California. He holds a Bachelor of Science. in Social Science & Special Education from Edinboro State College and Master of Arts in Education of Exceptional Children from San Francisco State University.
These new board members join a 32 member board that raises awareness and support for College of the Desert students and programs and oversees the finances and fiscal management, grant making policies and practices and other operations of the Foundation. 
The COD Foundation was established in 1983 by a group of visionary business and community leaders as a non-profit organization dedicated to enhancing the quality of higher education in the Coachella Valley by encouraging private and public support for College of the Desert. Over the last thirty years, College of the Desert Foundation has raised over $70 million to support students and programs at the college. For more information, call (760) 773-2561 or go to
Fdn Board Members 08-2014.jpg
New board members elected to the College of the Desert Foundation (l to r) include Dan Martinez, City Manager of Indio; Marge Dodge, retired IBM Executive; and Michael O’Neil, Desert Community College District Trustee and Emeritus Professor.








Announced July 2014