The First 5 Kern story.


First 5 Kern, also known as the Kern County Children’s and Families Commission, is lead by nine Commissioners (five of whom are appointed by the Kern County Board of Supervisors). Commissioners direct Proposition 10 (tobacco tax) funds, determine the focus of funding through community input and a strategic planning process and oversee the evaluation of service provider programs. Meetings are open to the public and subject to The Brown Act.



John Nilon, Chairperson
Retired, Kern County Administrative Officer
Term ends 03.31.24

Debbie Wood – Vice Chairperson
Retired, Coordinator for School Health
Bakersfield City School District
Term ends 03.31.25

Brynn Carrigan, Treasurer
County of Kern, Public Health Services Department
Term ends at end of Tenure

Jennie Sill (for KBHRS Dir. Stacy Kuwahara), Secretary
Mental Health Systems Administrator
County of Kern, Behavioral Health and Recovery Services
Term ends at end of Tenure

Dr. Lisa Gilbert
Deputy Superintendent, Instructional Services
Kern County Superintendent of Schools
Term ends 03.31.25

Supervisor Leticia Perez
County of Kern, Board of Supervisors – 5th District
Term ends 12.31.23

Lito Morillo
County of Kern, Department of Human Services
Term ends at end of Tenure

Deborah Murr
Chief Compliance and Fraud Officer
Kern Health Systems
Term ends 03.31.24

Aaron Resendez
McFarland Unified School District
Term ends 03.31.25

The First 5 Kern Commission is mandated by our by-laws to be made up of representatives in the following manner:
1. A member of the Board of Supervisors
2. The Public Health Officer or his/her designee
3. The Director of the Department of Human Services or his/her designee
4. The Director of the Mental Health Department (Kern Behavioral Health and Recovery Systems) or his/her designee
5. Five members, appointed by the Board of Supervisors, one nominated by
each of the five supervisors, taken from the following categories:
    a. persons responsible for managing the county functions of children’s services, public health services, behavioral health services, social services, and tobacco and other substance abuse and prevention services;
    b. the Board of Supervisors;
    c. recipients of project services in the County strategic plan;
    d. educators specializing in early childhood development;
    e. representatives of a local child care resource or referral agency or a local child care coordinating group;
    f. representatives of a local organization for prevention or early intervention for families at risk;
    g. representatives of community-based organizations that have the goal of promoting nurturing and early childhood development;
    h. representatives of local school districts; and
    i. representatives of local, medical, pediatric, or obstetric associations or societies

To review the by-laws of the Kern County Children and Families Commission (First 5 Kern), click here.