Emilio Vaca leaves North Tahoe Family Resource Center | SierraSun.com

Emilio Vaca leaves North Tahoe Family Resource Center

File photoEmilio Vaca

KINGS BEACH, Calif. – After four and a half years as executive director of the North Tahoe Family Resource Center, Emilio Vaca has decided to move on.

Vaca, who received the North Lake Tahoe Chamber of Commerce’s Citizen of the Year Award in 2011, resigned on Sept. 21 in order to spend more time with his family, including his daughter who has a rare medical condition, he said, and to evaluate his life.

“It’s bittersweet to be moving on in life,” Vaca said. “It was a wonderful, exciting four and a half years of my life. I found out about myself; it wasn’t just a job (for me).”

North Tahoe Family Resource Center, a nonprofit organization, has served as a link for individuals and families to local services and programs since it opened its doors in 2001. Through its efforts, the center is able to assist between 1,200 to 1,500 community members annually, according to its website.

During his tenure, Vaca oversaw not only the daily operations of the center, but its involvement in larger community-based projects, including: the construction of more than 70 adequate housing units in Kings Beach; fostering relationships between nonprofits and faith-based organizations to help those in need, which resulted in the creation of the Esperanza “Hope” Fund; and the current effort to integrate the center’s partner agencies – Project MANA, Tahoe SAFE Alliance and itself – under one roof, so multiple services can be offered in one location.

“He was an effective (director),” reflected John Shuff, a member of the North Tahoe Family Resource Center board of directors. “He was well connected in the community and closely aligned with the (center’s) partners.”

Vaca emphasized that the center’s efforts weren’t just his doing, but rather a collaborative effort.

“It’s wasn’t just Emilio Vaca,” he said. “I think often times we as a society glamorize one individual. At this organization we all move together – Emilio Vaca isn’t going one way, the staff going another and the board is going in a completely different direction. We worked as a team.”

With Vaca gone, Meredith Rosenberg, chair of the center’s board of directors, has taken on the role of interim executive director until a permanent replacement is found.

Shuff said the center has already started an informal search by reaching out to individuals within the nonprofit community. When the center’s board meets this Thursday, its members will discuss and decide on a formal process, Shuff said.

“Otherwise, the staff of FRC merely continues to do what it has always done in pursuit of its vision, which is ‘to inform, engage and empower community members with resources that will enable them to meet their needs and become self-sufficient,'” he said.

Learn more about the center at http://www.northtahoefrc.org.

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