Board of Directors

Gwenn MarieGwenn Marie, President, is a full-time Borrego Springs resident since March 2003 and owner of the Borrego Valley Inn, along with her husband, Rich Caldwell. Gwenn has been an active community volunteer, serving as President of the Chamber of Commerce Board for five years, launching the Borrego Business Think Tank (predecessor to the Borrego Village Association) and creating the popular Borrego Springs Village Guide series . Gwenn also served on the Community Plan Committee which authored Borrego Springs' section of San Diego County's recently-approved General Plan Update. Gwenn's prior professional experience includes a career in broadcast TV and providing strategic marketing services for Fortune 500 companies.  Gwenn holds an MA in Spiritual Psychology from the University of Santa Monica and a BA in English Education from the University of Maryland.

Jim Wermers, Vice President, is a local philanthropist and volunteer. Current Borrego Springs pursuits include President of de Anza Country Club, Vice President of Borrego Art Institute, lead donor and renovating consultant for the former Borrego Valley Foods Building and, when conditions are more acceptable, completion of the Desert Shadows housing development. Jim's San Diego volunteer service included ten years as a mediator with the San Diego Mediation Center, nine years on the Board of Hostelling International, San Diego, and eight years as a Board Member with the Golden Hill Planning Committee. Jim's primary business background includes building and developing thousands of residential units, primarily in San Diego County but also throughout the State of California, while serving as President of Wermers Construction Company. Jim and his wife Anne divide their time between their Borrego Springs residence and their other home in La Mesa.

Dennis Nourse, Director, is a local philanthropist and businessman. As well as serving on the BVA Board, he is founder and President of the Borrego Art Institute and owner of Hogtamer Investments, Inc., which owns and operates Coldwell Banker of Borrego Springs and Borrego Rentals. Prior to moving to Borrego, Mr. Nourse was the President and primary shareholder of Kelch Corporation, a manufacturer based in Cedarburg, Wisconsin which was sold to Bemis Corporation in 1997. Mr. Nourse and his wife Sharon are fulltime Borrego residents.

Betsy Knaak

Betsy Knaak, Treasurer, is the Executive Director of the Anza-Borrego Desert Natural History Association, an award-winning, 501c3 non-profit desert education organization established in 1971. Mrs. Knaak co-authored Borregoís International Dark Sky Community application and serves as chair of the Borrego Dark Sky Coalition. She served on the team to write the Borrego Springs Community Plan, approved by the San Diego County Board of Supervisors in 2011, and was an original member of the Borrego Springs Think Tank, the precursor to the Borrego Village Association. In 2008-2009, she served as Borrego Springs Honorary Mayor.

Richard Orne, Director, is an Architect and Director of the Borrego Village Association and along with his wife and fellow Director, Susan Hancock, are both full time residents of Borrego Springs.     Richardís professional life includes the master planning and architectural design of many large scale national and international mixed-use projects in such cities as Los Angeles, Dallas, New York, Valencia, Buenos Aires, Beijing, Fukuoka, Ho Chih Minh city and others.   As a community volunteer, Richard is also a member of the Borrego Springs Community Park Committee and the Borrego Art Institute.   Some of Richardsí community contributions include participation in the Architectural Design and Planning for the Palm Canyon Drive Improvements within the Village Core, the Planning and Design of the Community Park and the Architectural Design services for the newly renovated Borrego Art Institute building at Christmas Circle.

Susan Hancock, Director.  Susanís professional background includes Color, Landscape and Graphic Design for a variety of national development clients.   Some of her past works include the implementation and coordination for the 1984 Los Angeles Olympics.   Susanís current community contributions include landscape, color and graphic design for the Borrego Village Association, the Borrego Art Institute, the Anza Borrego State Park Botany Society and the De Anza Country Club.  Susan and her husband Richard Orne are full time residents of Borrego Springs.

Bob Bloom,  Director.   Bob is a half-time Borrego Springs resident, spending the other half-time in Portland, OR.  In addition to active participation in BVA projects, Bob is a founding Director and Secretary of the Borrego Village Foundation, a newly formed 501c3 organization focused on improving the quality of life for full and part-time Borrego Springs residents as well as visitors to our community.  While fully retired now, Bob had a 40 year career in education Ė teaching, school administration, and educational research and development.  At Education Northwest, a large non-profit corporation providing a full range of research, development, and training services to schools, school districts and states in the Northwest and beyond, he directed the School Improvement Program.  Bob and his staff facilitated and promoted school improvement in hundreds of schools throughout the country.  Prior to retiring in 2009, he served as Deputy Executive Officer for the Portland based corporation.  Following graduation from West Denver High school, he earned a Bachelor of Arts degree from the University of Northern Colorado and a Doctor of Education degree from Texas A&M University.

PO Box 1133   Borrego Springs  CA  92004-1133