President’s Message—OCWD Welcomes Tri Ta as Division 4 Board Director
On behalf of the OCWD Board of Directors and the District staff, I would like to welcome Westminster Mayor Tri Ta as our newest board member, representing division 4. Division 4 includes the cities of Los Alamitos and Seal Beach and parts of Buena Park, Cypress, Garden Grove, Huntington Beach, Stanton, and Westminster.
The seat became vacant upon the death of Philip Anthony in July, who served on the board for nearly 37 years. Director Ta was appointed to the board on September 5.
Tri Ta was elected to serve his third term as mayor of Westminster in November 2016. He was first elected to the city council 10 years earlier and re-elected in 2010. In 2008, he was selected to serve as mayor pro tempore. In 2012, Director Ta became the first Vietnamese-American elected mayor in the United States. He was re-elected as mayor in November 2014.
Prior to being elected to the city council, Director Ta served as a commissioner for the city’s Energy Committee and Advisory Committee for the Disabled. Director Ta currently represents Westminster on several committees, including the Orange County Fire Authority Board of Directors; Westminster’s Executive Committee and Budget and Finance Committee; the Orange County Council of Governments; the Orange County Public Library Advisory Board; and, the Orange County Transportation Authority Central County Corridor MIS and I-405 Policy Working Group. He also serves as council representative to the city’s Water Rate Structure Committee, Zoning Code Update Committee, 3rd Assault Amphibian Battalion Advisory Committee, and Energy Committee.
We are honored to have Tri Ta as a member of the OCWD family. His decade of public service in Orange County will serve the District well in achieving its mission to provide reliable and safe groundwater to more than 2.5 million people in the region.
Director Ta was born in Saigon, Vietnam. He came to the United States with his family in 1992 at the age of 19. He then received a bachelor’s degree in political science and completed the requirements for a master’s degree in international relations.
From 1998 to 2006, Director Ta worked as a career consultant and then an employment counselor. This enabled him to help numerous families from many ethnic groups become self-sufficient and less reliant on public assistance by developing better job searching skills and/or adequate vocational training to obtain sustainable employment. He also helped with a variety of supportive services including, but not limited to, transportation, childcare, housing, shelter, and ancillary.
Director Ta was active in many non-profit organizations, committees and projects, including the Union of Vietnamese Student Associations (UVSA); New Horizon; Orange History Program; National Alliance of Vietnamese American Service Agencies (NAVASA); Rancho Santiago Community College District’s Measure Advisory Committee; Giving Back Program; and, Kiwanis International. He is frequently sought-after by universities as an inspirational speaker whose ultimate message to the youth is “follow your dream ’til the end.”
Director Ta resides in Westminster with his wife Ahn Doan and their two daughters, Trianh and Trimy.
Please join us in welcoming Tri Ta to the OCWD family.
Denis R. Bilodeau, P.E.