GOVERNOR DAVIS MAKES
APPOINTMENTS TO THE SAN FRANCISCO BAY AREA WATER TRANSIT AUTHORITY
Gray Davis has announced the appointments of Charlene H. Johnson as president,
and James Fang, Gavin C. Newsom, and Nancy L. Wagner as members of the San
Francisco Bay Area Water Transit Authority.
Ms. Johnson, 54, of Colma, is currently vice-president of the
law firm of Hallisey and Johnson of San Francisco. She earned a bachelor of arts
degree from San Francisco State College and a juris doctorate degree from
Hastings College of Law.
Mr. Fang, 38, of San Francisco, has been president and chief
operating officer of Asian Week Newspaper, America’s largest and oldest
English language newspaper for Asian Americans, since 1995, and served as
assistant to the publisher from 1988 to 1991. He was elected to the BART Board
in 1990 and 1994, and was elected as president in 1998. From 1992 to 1995, Mr.
Fang was director of the Department of Commerce and Trade for the City and
County of San Francisco. He is co-chairman of the San Francisco Shanghai Sister
City Committee, and has also served as chairman for the Chinatown YMCA New Year
Run in 1988. Mr. Fang earned a bachelor of science degree from the University of
Mr. Newsom, 32, of San Francisco, was appointed in 1997 and
elected in 1998 to the Board of Supervisors for the City and County of San
Francisco. Mr. Newsom currently serves on the Plan and Programs Committee for
the San Francisco Transportation Authority. Previously, he served as president
of San Francisco’s Parking and Traffic Commission. Mr. Newsom serves as the
vice chair of the Audit and Government Efficiency Committee, the vice chair of
the Parks and Recreation Committee, the chair of the Small Business, Economic
Vitality, and Consumer Services Committee, and as a member of the State
Legislation Committee. In the private sector, he is the president, general
partner, and proprietor of several Northern California small businesses,
including the PlumpJack Management Group, the PlumpJack Wine Shop, and the
PlumpJack Development Fund. Mr. Newsom earned a bachelor of science degree from
Santa Clara University.
Captain Wagner, 45, of Tahoe City, has served for 26 years in
the maritime service, including 10 years as a San Francisco Bar pilot. In 1990,
she became the nation’s first female pilot for the San Francisco Bar Pilots
Association. Prior to this, Captain Wagner sailed with the Exxon Shipping
Company aboard domestic tankers from 1978 to 1987, becoming the first female to
graduate to obtain an Unlimited Masters’ license. She maintains her commission
in the U.S. Navy Reserve as a commander and is active in a number of
professional organizations, including the Council of American Master Mariners,
the American Pilots Association, and Women in Transportation. Since 1999,
Captain Wagner has been a member of the Board of Trustees for the San Francisco
National Maritime Museum Association. In 1993, she was appointed by the U.S.
Secretary of Transportation to serve on the Merchant Marine Personnel Advisory
Committee in Washington D.C.
These four, along with three previously announced
appointments, bring to seven the total number named to the Authority Board.
Under the complex formula laid out in the legislation creating the Authority,
the Governor gets four appointments, the Senate Rules Committee gets two more
and the Assembly Rules Committee has two slots. The Senate Rules Committee has
already named Marina Secchitano, Regional Director of the Inlandboatmen’s
Union of the Pacific and Joe Freitas, the former San Francisco District
Attorney. As of this writing the Assembly Rules Committee has yet to make its
The legislation further calls for the creation of a Community Advisory
Community and gives it three places on the Authority Board. However, for the
first eight years of the Authority’s life these places have been specially
designated for representatives from the Golden Gate Bridge District and other
similar agencies. The Golden Gate Bridge District has named Mayor Al Boro of San
Rafael as their representative. The Community Advisory Board is to be made up of
representatives from communities that have or anticipate having ferry service.