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Board of Directors

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Monterey Peninsula Airport District Board of Directors

The District is governed by five publicly elected Board of Directors.

The current Board members are:

Matthew Nelson - Chair

nelsonAs a retired major airline pilot, Nelson brings with him a wealth of experience in the dynamic environment of aviation.  Nelson is a former Assistant Chief Pilot, check airman, and training captain for a regional airline, with experience as a liaison between management and the pilot group.  He has worked with the FAA on safety-related issues, and as a member of the Critical Incident Response Team (CIRT), a volunteer group dispatched to assist and aid crew members.

He holds a BA degree in Political Science from the University of California at Santa Barbara and an Air Transport Pilot’s license.  He graduated from Robert Louis Stevenson High School and has lived in Monterey County for over 24 years.Bilingual in Spanish, Nelson lives in Pacific Grove with his wife and their two sons.

Nelson’s two major initiatives include greater convenience for the traveler with a smaller carbon footprint for the environment.  He plans to achieve this by working with the FAA in creating a more fuel-efficient and effective landing approach system used by pilots during inclement weather and working with business leaders of Monterey County by responsibly increasing destination choices.

Outside of aviation, Nelson is a volunteer diver at the Monterey Bay Aquarium, Cub Scout leader, and PTA committee member.   Matt Nelson was elected to the Monterey Peninsula Airport District in 2010.  Matt can be reached at: 831-915-0307  This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it.



Carl Miller - Vice chair

Carl Miller retired in October 2006 as the Chief of Police in Pacific Grove where he worked for thirty years rising through the ranks to Police Chief.   He has a BA degree from the Golden Gate University in Police Management and is a graduate of the FBI National Academy and the California P.O.S.T. Police Command College. Carl has lived and work on the Monterey Peninsula for 45 years and lives in Monterey with his wife (Monterey native) Diana Ferrante Miller and their sons Alex and Marc. Carl teaches police procedures at several police academies in California. In addition to the Monterey Peninsula Airport District Board, Carl serves as a board member for Interim of Monterey County, which operates 18 facilities that provides supportive services and quality housing for people with mental illness.  He also serves on the board of Monterey Peninsula Impact for Youth, which provides anti drug and alcohol programs for children in Pacific Grove and Carmel schools. Carl is also the President of Monterey County Special Districts Association (2012 & 2013).  Carl Miller was elected to the Monterey Peninsula Airport Board of Directors in 2006.

648-7000 extension 402


Mary Ann Leffel

Mary Ann Leffel retired from a 45 year career in the banking industry, working for large and small banks all over the US, as she moved often with her husband while he was in the US Army. She is now serving as the Director of Business and Industry Relations for the California Homeland Security Consortium. Leffel is active as President of the Monterey County Business Council Board, co founder of the Competitive Cluster Initiative, a public private partnership for economic development in Monterey County, Chair of the Government Relations/Business Development Committee for Monterey County’s Overall Economic Development Commission and as Chair of the county’s Workforce Investment Board Oversight Committee. MaryAnn is also a current Director of the Monterey Peninsula Airport District She currently serves on the boards of Access Monterey Peninsula, Interim, Inc, Central Coast Community Health Care, Inc., Monterey County Agricultural Education and Carmel Heritage Foundation. She is also serving on the Business Advisory Council for California Community Colleges, the advisory boards of the Naval Postgraduate School Foundation, Leadership Monterey Peninsula, Pebble Beach Food and Wine and The Tomato Fest. She is past Chair of the Monterey Peninsula Chamber of Commerce, Natividad Medical Center Board of Trustees, Leadership Monterey Peninsula, and Volunteer Center of Monterey County. She is involved with numerous other civic organizations through membership and participation. Living in Monterey County since 1982, with her husband, Hal, they have two grown children and three granddaughters.

In 2001, Leffel was awarded the California Chamber of Commerce Small Business Advocate of The Year. In 2004, she was awarded the American Heart Association’s Heart Of A Woman Award.


William "Bill" Sabo

Bill Sabo is an aviation safety and management consultant. He is also an active commercial pilot.

As a board member of the Monterey County Transportation Agency and Chairman of the Monterey County Airport Land Use Commission he maintains an active involvement in transportation matters affecting Monterey County and the Central Coast.

Bill is a decorated Viet Nam era combat pilot and a former pilot with Eastern Airlines.  He was previously a Senior Vice President of Air Safety International.

Bill’s priorities for the District include an emphasis on continuously improving airline flight options and airfares for Central Coast visitors and residents.

Bill joined the Monterey Peninsula Airport District Board in 2007. His current term extends through 2016.

831-402-7394 - This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it.  -


Richard Searle

Dick Searle has been on the Airport Board for over 30 years.

After WWII, I settled on the Monterey Peninsula.  The Airport was in its’ infancy and as a flyer I could envision its value to the Monterey Peninsula.

As President of the Monterey Airman’s Association, I was instrumental in closing runway 6/24 for safety and noise abatement in fact I was the first pilot to land on 10R and 28L.


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Opens 4:00 AM until arrival of last flight, 7 days a week, 365 days a year.

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