SACRAMENTO – Governor Gavin Newsom today announced the following appointments:
Elaine D. Martin, 60, of Sacramento, has been appointed administrative assistant to the director at the California Department of Tax and Fee Administration, where she has served as administrative assistant II since 2017. Martin was administrative assistant II at the California Department of Human Resources from 2015 to 2017. She was administrative assistant II at the Delta Stewardship Council from 2008 to 2015 and administrative assistant I at the California Department of Corrections and Rehabilitation in 2007. She was administrative assistant I at the Department of Parks and Recreation from 2004 to 2007. Martin was executive assistant in the Office of the Secretary of State from 2003 to 2004 and executive secretary II in the Governor’s Office of Criminal Justice Planning from 2001 to 2003. This position does not require Senate confirmation and the compensation is $81,216. Martin is registered without party preference.
Robert A. Barton, 58, of Fair Oaks, has been reappointed to the Board of Parole Hearings, where he has served since 2017. Barton held several positions in the Office of the Inspector General from 2005 to 2017, including inspector general and assistant inspector general. He was supervising deputy district attorney in the Kern County District Attorney’s Office from 2000 to 2005, where he served as a deputy district attorney from 1988 to 2000. Barton earned a Juris Doctor degree from the University of California, Davis School of Law. This position requires Senate confirmation and the compensation is $159,068. Barton is registered without party preference.
Kevin Chappell, 55, of Elk Grove, has been reappointed to the Board of Parole Hearings, where he has served since 2015. Chappell was a retired annuitant correctional administrator at California Correctional Health Care Services in 2015, warden at San Quentin State Prison from 2012 to 2014, and served in several positions at Folsom State Prison from 2010 to 2012, including chief deputy warden and associate warden. Chappell was chief of the Classification Services Unit at the California Department of Corrections and Rehabilitation from 2009 to 2010, where he was facility captain from 2006 to 2008. He was correctional administrator in the Division of Adult Institutions there from 2008 to 2009 and a lieutenant at Richard A. McGee Correctional Training Center from 2004 to 2006. He served in several positions at California Medical Facility, Vacaville from 1995 to 2004, including lieutenant, counselor and sergeant. Chappell was a correctional officer at Folsom State Prison from 1987 to 1995. This position requires Senate confirmation and the compensation is $159,068. Chappell is a Democrat.
Minerva de la Torre, 44, of Merced, has been appointed to the Board of Parole Hearings. De la Torre has served as a parole board commissioner for the State of Nevada Board of Parole Commissioners since 2018 and has been a licensed social worker at Desert Behavioral Health since 2017. She was a licensed clinical social worker supervisor and veteran justice outreach coordinator at the U.S. Department of Veterans Affairs from 2013 to 2017. De la Torre was a parole agent I for the Division of Adult Parole Operations at the California Department of Corrections and Rehabilitation from 2008 to 2012. She was a mental health therapist at the Children’s Bureau in 2009. De la Torre was a foster care social worker at Niños Latinos Unidos from 2002 to 2008 and an eligibility worker II at the Los Angeles County Department of Public Social Services from 2000 to 2002. She earned a Master of Social Work degree from California State University, Long Beach. This position requires Senate confirmation and the compensation is $159,028. De la Torre is a Democrat.
Neil Schneider, 60, of Sacramento, has been reappointed to the Board of Parole Hearings, where he has served since 2018. Schneider was an adjunct assistant professor in the Administration of Justice Department at Los Rios Community College District in 2018. He served in several positions at the Sacramento Police Department from 1983 to 2017, including captain, lieutenant, sergeant and officer. Schneider earned a Master of Public Policy and Administration degree from California State University, Sacramento. This position requires Senate confirmation and the compensation is $159,068. Schneider is a Republican.
Darren Dow Ocasio, 49, of Yreka, has been appointed to the California Volunteers Commission. Dow Ocasio has served as state rank and file director at CAL FIRE Local 2881 since 2019 and as battalion chief since 2020. He held several positions at CAL FIRE Local 2881 from 2006 to 2019, including general vice president, district vice president and chapter director. Dow Ocasio has held several positions at the California Department of Forestry and Fire Protection from 1991 to 2020, including battalion chief, fire captain, fire apparatus engineer and firefighter in the Siskiyou Unit. He is a member of the International Association of Firefighters and the California Professional Firefighters. This position does not require Senate confirmation and there is no compensation. Dow Ocasio is a Republican.