Stateline, NV— Elizabeth Carmel, a former land use planner and advisor with extensive experience working in the Sierra, has joined the Tahoe Regional Planning Agency (TRPA) Governing Board following her appointment by California Assembly Speaker John Perez (D-Los Angeles).

The seat is one of 14 voting positions on the environmental planning agency’s board – seven representing California and seven representing Nevada. One board seat, appointed by the President of the United States, is non-voting.

Carmel worked as a land use planner for Sonoma and El Dorado counties and for the Town of Truckee.  She was hired by the newly incorporated Town of Truckee as town planner where she helped formulate the Town’s first General and Downtown plans. Carmel also worked in the 1990s as a land use planning advisor for the Sierra Business Council, a sustainability organization based in Truckee.

“I recognize that I am joining the board at a critical moment as TRPA begins implementing an updated Regional Plan,” Carmel said. “This could be a new way forward for Tahoe’s environment, economy and communities and I think I bring the right mix of experience to help achieve the goals of the plan.”

Carmel is also a professional naturalist photographer and has spent over 25 years exploring and photographing Lake Tahoe and the Sierra Nevada. She is author of The Changing Range of Light, a book of photography and essays that discuss the impacts of climate change in the Sierra Nevada and Lake Tahoe.

“We are pleased that Mrs. Carmel has been selected to our Board and look forward to working with her during a time of renewal when we are working to strengthen our partnership with Nevada and California,” TRPA Executive Director Joanne S. Marchetta said.

Carmel Graduated from UC Berkeley in 1987 with a degree in Environmental Science with an emphasis on land use planning. She currently owns and operates the Carmel Galleries in Truckee and Calistoga with her husband.

This appointment brings the Agency’s board to its full complement and fills both California legislative appointments. In April, the California Senate Rules Committee appointed Sacramento attorney Bill Yeates to the board. The seats were opened last winter when board members Mara Bresnick (Assembly appointee) and Byron Sher (Senate appointee) stepped down.

The Tahoe Regional Planning Agency cooperatively leads the effort to preserve, restore, and enhance the unique natural and human environment of the Lake Tahoe Region now and in the future. For additional information, call Jeff Cowen at (775) 589-5278 or email him at

Media Release Carmel Appointment