Julia believes in making the world a better place. And she backs up that belief with action. A lifetime of work in the nonprofit sector has given Julia both the skills and the knowledge to improve her community - professionally, as a community volunteer, and as an elected member of the Sparks City Council.
A large portion of her professional career has been dedicated to making sure that all kids have the opportunity to thrive. She started her career at Partners in Education building community partnerships to strengthen education. She then served as Executive Director of the Gang Alternatives Partnership providing positive alternatives to kids. And she then became CEO of Girl Scouts of the Sierra Nevada building girls of courage, confidence and character. Most recently, she was asked to join the team of Girl Scouts of the USA where she serves as a consultant to local council leaders, helping them to strengthen their organization and better serve girls.
In between she started and ran her own successful business for well over a decade, providing management solutions primarily to nonprofit and government organizations. As a small business owner, Julia understands the challenges and opportunities facing business owners. She is respected in the business community and is a graduate of the Reno-Sparks Chamber of Commerce Leadership Reno-Sparks program and a 20 Under 40 Award winner.
In 2008 Julia became active in local government and was elected to serve on the Sparks City Council representing Ward 1. There she focused on strengthening neighborhoods, environmental sustainability projects, reinventing the heart of the city and maintaining critical city services during the tough economic times. Her broad range of community involvement brings an important perspective to the City Council table. She has been a voice of reason and works toward win-win solutions to tough challenges facing the City.
Julia is currently the Chair of the Sparks Redevelopment Agency and serves as Vice Chair of the Washoe County Health District. She has served on the Sparks Parks and Recreation Commission, Senior Services Advisory Committee, Washoe County Oversight Committee for School Facilities, City of Sparks Master Plan Steering Committee and the Regional Transportation Commission RTP 2040 Steering Committee.
Julia is married to James Cavanaugh. In their spare time they enjoy working on their 1940s home, renovating vintage Airstream trailers and hiking and camping with their rescue dog Gus.