Almanac

News - December 25, 2013

Portola Valley: Newly elected mayor sees full agenda in 2014

by Dave Boyce

A busy year is ahead for Ann Wengert, Portola Valley's new mayor.

After her election at the Dec. 11 Town Council meeting, Ms. Wengert listed the issues facing the council, in no particular order, to include affordable housing, aircraft noise, the Portola Road scenic corridor, skateboard ramps, a green building ordinance, updates to the zoning code, and the town's 50th anniversary.

The meeting began with a farewell to Councilman Ted Driscoll, who concluded his fifth four-year term on the council as newly elected Councilman Craig Hughes was sworn in to began his first term. Encomiums for Mr. Driscoll were plentiful and long, including one from state Sen. Jerry Hill, D-San Mateo, who came in person to deliver a framed statement from himself and Assemblyman Rich Gordon (D-Menlo Park). A story on Mr. Driscoll will appear in a future issue of the Almanac.

Ms. Wengert's colleagues on the council elected her on a unanimous vote. She had served as vice mayor in 2013. The vice mayor for the coming 12 months is Councilman Jeff Aalfs.

The mayor, town manager and vice mayor set the agendas for council meetings. It's common practice for this otherwise ceremonial job to rotate among council members. Ms. Wengert last served as mayor in 2009.

Ms. Wengert is the co-founder of Property Capital Corp. and Briggs Wengert Associates, LLC, both San Francisco firms.

Over her 28-year career, she has represented investors in transactions worth more than $5 billion, she has said. Her list of clients included Alaska's state investment fund, and teacher retirement funds for California and New York.

She has raised some $6 million in venture and angel financing and has arranged corporate acquisitions and institutional financing worth hundreds of millions of dollars.

Ms. Wengert has a bachelor's degree in psychology from Bucknell University and a master's degree in business from the Wharton School at the University of Pennsylvania.

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