Please Support these Candidates for Change

ROBE has selected four candidates to run in the PVHA Director election to be held January 9, 2018. The candidates are Marlene Breene, Mary Elwell, Mike Moody and Ried Schott. Their bios can be found here. The first step was to comply with the PVHA’s somewhat onerous process of collecting at least 100 signatures for each candidate in front of a “witness” and then having that witness attest in front of a notary that all signatures were collected in front of that witness. Signatures from 190 PVHA members were collected. In total, 442 members have signed nominating petitions for ROBE candidates in the last three elections.

12/20/17 Candidate Forum Video. The League of Women Voters of Palos Verdes Peninsula hosted a Candidate Forum in which 6 of the 9 candidates for the PVHA Board of Directors made their case. Even if you do not have time to study the issues, we encourage you to sign and return your ballot before the end of the year to make sure it is received by the deadline of January 3. That way, your vote of No Preference will count towards a quorum. A quorum is required to make the election binding. If you have lost your ballot, you may get a new one at the PVHA office in City Hall on January 3, 2018 (when they reopen for business after the Holidays) and then drop the ballot in the lockbox in City Hall that same day before 4:30pm. To see the video, please click here. The video is in two parts, so be sure to also view Part II.

These nominees bring a proven record supporting our parklands and a willingness to work diligently for our community


In 1985, my husband Patrick and I moved into our Lunada Bay ‘dream fixer’, with two young preschoolers in tow.  It was the ugliest house on the block.  Today we live in the same (remodeled) house, and we have the honored title of ‘the older couple on the block’.  Our three daughters all graduated from PV schools, while my husband worked for Toyota, and I continued growing my design studio. My background:

  • As a successful business owner and Lunada Bay resident for over 30 years, I know what it takes to do good work in our community.
  • My degree in Environmental Design from Parson’s School of Design has prepared me for an interdisciplinary working style, with studies in urban planning, architecture, structures, landscape, interiors, and lighting.
  • Special studies on the Olmsted firm, both at Parsons and through symposia by the National Association of Olmsted Parks, provide deeper insight into the history of our community and inspiration for the future.
  • Extensive volunteer efforts as a board member for the Lunada Bay Homeowners Association, Committee Chairperson for PTA, and docent activities for the Palos Verdes Art Center and the Palos Verdes Peninsula Land Conservancy, connect to community concerns on a day to day level.
  • My excellent working relationship with the Art Jury, staff, and the City of PVE, displays knowledge and skill in navigating city process, seeking the best possible outcome for residents while preserving our high standards.

Our city, Palos Verdes Estates, is considered the jewel among Olmsted’s many projects.  I am honored to be a resident, business owner and designer, contributing to our city legacy.

Positioning Statement:

Hit the reset button! Over the past few years PVHA has demonstrated a diminished ability to serve our community effectively. The past and the future do not need to be in conflict. I would work to re-align PVHA words, actions and policies to reflect the clear direction set down in our CC&R’s. I embrace a modernization strategy that builds on the past, respects community values, and takes the long view to development.

I support stewardship of our valuable parklands and acknowledge the need for clear equitable guidelines in the architectural review process. We are historically a visionary community. We need to pay attention to that original vision, to adapt and carefully uplift it for future generations. In the words of Olmsted, “ May we who are responsible…look at the beauty…and may the generations who follow keep this in their minds and plans.”

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Mary Elwell

I have lived in Palos Verdes Estates for 35 years in the house my husband and I built in the early eighties on Paseo La Cresta. My son and daughter both graduated from Palos Verdes High School where I volunteered extensively.

I came to California from Minnesota in 1962, accepting a job from Space Technology Laboratories, (STL). STL became TRW, today known as Northrup Grumman, where I retired after 40 years. My experience as Project Manager on large systems deployed to field sites will help me perform well on the PVHA Board in building relationships, successful negotiating, executing and following through time critical decisions.

I have been an avid runner/hiker and have run in 25 marathons. In training for these, I've enjoyed using and becoming familiar with the PVE trails and Parkland over many years.  Presently I am a Volunteer in Police Services (VIPS) and a Parkland Ranger with the Palos Verdes Estates Police Department. These positions require me to conduct vacation house checks, patrol parkland as well as "pocket" parks and bluffs, report vandalism, identify graffiti and also be alert for any safety hazards. My volunteer service allows me to meet and communicate with PVE residents to ensure we are supporting their home and community concerns. 

Positioning Statement:

If elected, I will work diligently to ensure cooperation and understanding between the PVHA and PVE residents. In particular, my efforts to improve the PVHA will begin by listening to residents’ concerns with the Art Jury, then work those concerns to bring solutions that can be accepted by all parties. This will ensure a more straight-forward process, less conflict and more coordination between the PVHA and the City of PVE concerning remodeling, building and landscaping applications.  Further, as a Director of the PVHA I will be a strong influence to preserve and maintain our Parkland and trails for our community to experience and enjoy.

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Michael Moody

I am a native Californian and graduated from the University of California, Berkley, College of Engineering. I have lived on the Peninsula since 1955 and in PVE since 1981.

I am a Registered Professional Engineer and Risk Manager and have my own Risk Management consulting firm that provides services to the Governments of Guam, the Commonwealth of the Northern Mariana Islands, and other government agencies throughout the world.

My public service includes:

  • Palos Verdes Estates: Mayor and City Council
  • Valmonte Home Owners Association: Co- founder
  • Marymount College, Palos Verdes: Trustee, Planning Committee, Chairman of the Finance Committee
  • Los Angeles County Sanitation District: Director
  • California Joint Powers Insurance Authority: Executive Committee and Claims Committee
  • Southern California Association of Governments Airport Expansion Task Force
  • Peninsula Symphony Association: Director
  • Served in the U.S. Marine Corps in the Korean conflict

Positioning Statement:

If elected to the PVHA Board, I pledge to use my experience to make the Association more open and cooperative with the residents, work with the City of Palos Verdes Estates to create single, uniform building standards, and develop a fair and effective system of encroachment management. 

L. Ried Schott

Raised in Ohio, I’ve lived in Denver, Atlanta, Chicago and New York before moving to California 25 years ago, Isettling in Palos Verdes Estates over a decade ago.  I’ve worked for a pension fund advisor, investment banking firm, developer, international appraisal firm and a government agency involving the valuation, financing, market research and brokerage of commercial properties throughout many areas of the U.S.

I remain active with property management through my own firm and as an angel investor with Tech Coast Angels, having invested in over a dozen start-up companies over the past 15 years. I have also dedicated about two years rebuilding my home in PVE and understand the challenges many residences face in dealing with the Art Jury as well as with view restorations. Locally, I am a Volunteer Parkland Ranger with the PVE Police, a member of the PV Golf Club, a member of the Manhattan Country Club and a past Advisory Board Member of the Malaga Home Owners Association.  I also serve on the Board of AOF-Pacific (a non-profit housing corporation), and as a member of the Woltemade Economics Advisory Board at Ohio Wesleyan University. My formal education includes undergraduate studies at OWU, a business degree from the University of Denver and supplemental graduate school studies and extension courses (at NYU and UCLA).

My fiancée and I live on Via Lazo. Over the last couple of years, I compiled a comprehensive inventory of PVE Parklands, trails and pathways. From this, a Trails Map was developed for use by the Parkland Rangers; it was also presented to the PVE Police for search/rescue. Such information is also important for the maintenance, management and preservation of PVE's city owned land, in which the PV Homes Association holds reversionary interests.

Positioning Statement:

If elected to the PVHA, my pledge is to make efforts to:

  • Reduce PVHA quorum requirements so that Directors are elected, not self-appointed
  • Prevent attempts recently made by the PVHA Board to close Parkland access and trails
  • Develop Art Jury policies that reduce conflicts of interest and make the process of building in PVE simpler
  • Improve the view restoration process
  • Initiate term limits so Directors can’t serve 10 to 20 years, as most have
  • Update the PVHA By-Laws from 1923
  • Uphold deed restrictions to stop the sale of Parkland

I respectfully ask for your vote to support my efforts, and those of other non-incumbent Candidates/Nominee.