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Wapato School District

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graduating seniors walking in a line outside high school in the caps and gowns

School Board of Directors

                                       Lori Garcia - Director, District #1

Portrait Lori Garcia-Board MemberLori Garcia was chosen as the new District #1 Director during the 2021 November General Election.  She was sworn into office during the School Board’s regular business meeting on December 13, 2021.

Mrs. Garcia is a Wapato High School Alum and has served as a Social Worker for the last 20 years.  She and her husband Miguel, also a Wapato graduate, have two children.  One of them graduated from Wapato in 2018 and another is a freshman this year.  Mrs. Garcia has been involved in public service around the community and school district over the past several years.  Her volunteer work in the District has consisted of volunteering at Adams Elementary for 12 year, half of those serving at the Parent Teacher Organization (PTO) President.  She also co-chaired and served as Vice-President for the Senior Parents when her oldest child was a senior.  In addition to her volunteer service she says she enjoys supporting youth sports teams. 

Picture of SarahSarah Divina - Director, District #2 (Board Vice-President)

Sarah Divina took the oath of office at the November 26, 2018 regular School Board Meeting. The Board of Directors appointed Mrs. Divina to the District Director #2 position that was vacated in the Fall of 2018.

Serving the Wapato community in a public service capacity is nothing new for Mrs. Divina.  Over the past two decades she has given of her time to in a variety of ways to serve the Wapato community.  She has volunteered in the schools, is involved with the Filipino American Community, and has served on a handful of community boards.  Mrs. Divina says she looks forward to helping the District meet the needs of our children so that they may be able to reach their dreams.

Mrs. Divina has lived in the Wapato area for more than 20 years.  Her children attended Wapato Public Schools and she now has grandchildren being educated in the District.

Board Member Javi VelaJavier Vela- Director, District #3 

Elected to the School Board on November 7, 2023.  A Wapato High School graduate from the Class of 1991.

 My initial motivation to run for a Board seat was simply to give back to my community, and try my best to make the right choices as where it is beneficial to all Wapato students. My goal is to make policy and financial decisions that I believe have the best interest of our students in mind. I want to provide an environment, resources and curriculum to sharpen our students’ skills and to increase student achievement.


My daughter Vanessa is a 10th Grader at Wapato High School.


Picture of LorenzoLorenzo Alvarado - Director, District #4  


As a proud member of the Wapato Community for more than two decades and having attended Wapato Public Schools from pre-kindergarten to graduation in 1983, I want what everyone wants, a school district that helps all students be successful and positive contributing members of our community/world.  I want to be part of a board that works together, learns together and represents what the community wants done to help all students graduate on time and with a meaningful diploma.  I look forward to contributing to an already strong board and making it stronger.  I am passionate about public education.  I have a proven track record and experience supporting education.  In fact, I was a teacher for 7 years and am currently a building administrator in the Yakima School District and have been for 27 years.  I bring a unique perspective as does each of the current board members.  I love the city of Wapato, I am who I am because of my education in the Wapato Public Schools and now, I look forward to giving back to this great district!

I have a wife, Zuky Alvarado, who is a teacher at Adams Elementary, a son, Lorenzo Jr. who graduated in 2019 from Wapato HS, and two others that are still in the district.  Fabian is a senior, and Sofia is a sophomore.

My hobbies are spending time with immediate and extended families, dancing and exercising.

Picture of JohnJohn Francisco - Director, District #5 (Board President)

I ran for and was elected director of the Wapato School District School Board in 2011.  My purpose then and now is to provide an experienced educator’s perspective to the policy making process of a school board.  My extensive experience in the classroom and in educational associations make me uniquely qualified to give opinions and shape policy and guide a district toward a successful future.  I strive to represent and give stakeholders a voice in the process.  Students are our tomorrow and we have a responsibility to ensure we provide them with the tools and foundation to be responsible and productive members of our society to provide for all our futures.

Personal Bio:  I was born and raised in Honolulu HI in 1950. I am 69 years old. I am married to Wapato High School alum, Connie Brown, (Class of 1971) for 43 years.  I am the father of three daughters all of whom graduated from Wapato High School.  I am also the grandfather of two grandsons and one granddaughter.

Graduate of: Punahou School in 1968.

I am a 1972 graduate of Central Washington University.

Professional Career:  37 years teacher in Wapato; 7 years teacher in White Swan; teaching elementary, middle school, high school.

Lifetime member of Washington Education Association and National Education Association