Encinitas council selects Cyclovia founder, landscape architect to fill seat

Joy Lyndes will become Cardiff's new representative on the City Council.
(Courtesy of Joy Lyndes)

Joy Lyndes will serve remainder of Jody Hubbard’s term


An Encinitas Historical Society board member and former city Environmental Commissioner who helped create the city’s first car-free, Cyclovia bicycling event will become District 3’s new representative on the City Council.

Joy Lyndes, a landscape architect who runs her own company, was selected from a pool of what was initially 16 applicants and ultimately dropped to 11 by the time the council made its pick Wednesday, Feb. 24. She will fill the spot held by Jody Hubbard, who was two years into her first, four-year term as a council member when she resigned last month due to health issues.

“I think she’s the right person for this moment,” Councilwoman Kellie Shay Hinze said, praising Lyndes’ communication skills, her diplomacy in working through various hurdles to create the first Cyclovia event and her dedication to various community organizations.

The vote to appoint Lyndes was 3-1, with Councilman Tony Kranz opposed. Council members all agreed that Lyndes, plus three other people — Inge Bisconer, a city Environmental Commission member who has a 40-year background in water industry issues; Julia Chun-Heer, a former policy manager for Surfrider Foundation’s San Diego chapter who has served on several regional coastal advisory committees; and Brett Farrow, an architect who’s just finished a term as a a city planning commissioner — were their top four candidates.

Kranz said his top pick out of the four was Farrow because of his expertise on land use planning issues and because he was the candidate who had Hubbard’s endorsement. Speaking during public comment that night, Hubbard said she wanted the council to pick Farrow to finish out her term in office. He worked her election campaign two years ago and “we think a lot a like,” she said.

Councilman Joe Mosca said all four top candidates were impressive and he could could be happy with any of them, but Lyndes “was a little bit above the rest.” He said he was looking for someone with a “public servant’s heart” who demonstrated extensive community involvement and had excellent communication skills.

Mayor Catherine Blakespear said she wanted to appoint someone who believes the city is headed in the right direction on a number of high-profile issues and can work well with a team, but also adds value and is a leader.

“She seems to me to bring all of those skill sets,” Blakespear said, adding that she particularly liked the fact that Lyndes is involved in issues relating to the city’s history, present and future.

Lyndes has served on the board of the Encinitas Historical Society since 2014. She’s been active in the rehabilitation efforts at the former Pacific View School property, and she was a member of the city’s Environmental Commission from 2014 to 2020. The annual Cyclovia event she helped establish is a several-hour, car-free period on Coast Highway 101 dedicated to the enjoyment of people on bicycles, skateboards, roller skates and other human-powered modes of transport.

Kranz said he had one significant issue with the selection of Lyndes — she doesn’t live in the district’s core Cardiff area, she lives on the edge of the district along Melba Road. He said the council ought to appoint someone like Farrow who lives in the coastal Cardiff area and said that this might become an issue if the city’s district lines are re-drawn and Lyndes decides to run for election to the post.

Blakespear said she didn’t think the district lines are likely to shift, saying there hasn’t been a significant population change.

In addition to the four candidates who made the council’s top finalists list, the remaining applicants were Scott Defiippis, Gayle (Newhouse) Gladstone, Gregory Hay, Kellie Myers, Greg Oswell, Thomas “Mike” Staples and Julie Thunder. Two candidates, Michelle Gable Bilski and Tom Delaney, removed their names from consideration before the meeting. Three other people didn’t meet the application qualifications.
—- Barbara Henry is a freelance writer for The San Diego Union-Tribune