BEND, OR -- Ariel Mendez is the newest member of the Bend Parks and Recreation District board. He beat Travis Davis, 72% to 28%. As a first-time candidate, Mendez says the process was challenging; but he's ready to serve. "Now, the real work begins. I'm looking forward to actually doing the work that I set out to do. And I think that there's a real opportunity here for the parks district to help people in their daily lives in Bend, and I want to make sure the parks district is serving our community's needs in the best way that it can."
Mendez is the Board President of Bend Bikes, and has worked as a safe streets advocate. For the last three 3 years, he's been on the city's budget and transportation advisory committees. His focus will be on improving urban trail connectivity, "The District has not looked at its urban trail network as a way of getting around. They've focused on it as a means of recreation, and I think that's a big missed opportunity." He also wants to expand kids programs and affordable recreation classes.
His opponent, Travis Davis, is a local businessman who ran as the "east-side candidate."