Former planning director reclaims spot in Malibu

Joyce Parker-Bozylinski

Joyce Parker-Bozylinski, who oversaw the creation of Malibu’s General Plan during the city’s infancy, was appointed planning manager last week. She will begin working on Jan. 11.

Parker-Bozylinski replaces Stacey Rice, who stepped down in August to care for her newborn son. Stefanie Edmondson has been serving as interim planning manager since April. It is not known if she had applied for the permanent position.

Parker-Bozylinski was Malibu’s planning director from 1993 to 1996. The name of the position was changed to planning manager in 2003 when the Planning Department became the Planning Division of the Environmental and Community Development Department.

In an interview on Tuesday afternoon, Parker-Bozylinski said she feels like she is coming home.

“When the City of Malibu job opened up, I jumped at the chance,” Parker-Bozylinski said. “I saw it as a perfect fit. I know the issues.”

Parker-Bozylinski said she has followed Malibu issues since leaving the city in 1996. She said she sees Malibu as a more mature municipality than the one she left.

When she was here, the zoning code was still known as the Interim Zoning Ordinance and there was no Local Coastal Program. Also, the General Plan was not finalized until the end of her tenure.

“A lot of time was spent interpreting what the Interim Zoning ordinance says,” Parker-Bozylinski said.

She continued, “This time I am going to be able to focus on growing the Planning Division. Although I’ll be busy running the Planning Division, I’ll have a little bit more time to make this the best planning division in all of Southern California.”

City Manager Jim Thorsen selected Parker-Bozylinski for the post. Since she is not the head of a city department, Malibu City Council confirmation is not needed.

Thorsen could not be reached for comment.

In an e-mail sent to city officials obtained by The Malibu Times, Thorsen wrote Parker-Bozylinski has “a reputation as a strong manager with outstanding interpersonal, communication and consensus building skills.”

Parker-Bozylinski was born in Colorado and moved to Southern California about 30 years ago. She has a bachelor’s degree in social work from San Diego State and a master’s degree in urban planning from UCLA.

“Social work was limited to helping individuals, which is not a bad thing,” Parker-Bozylinski said. “But I wanted to be in a profession where I could effect change on a larger scale. Urban planning really attracted me. The ability to affect a lot of people’s lives, I found to be more interesting.”

Parker-Bozylinski came to work in Malibu in 1993 as a senior planner. She then took the planning director position following the resignation of Bob Benard.

Parker-Bozylinski left Malibu in 1996 to take the top planning position in Oxnard. She said she took that job to work in a larger city and advance her career. She remained there for three years, and then became a planning consultant for various cities, a job she is still doing today.

She said she decided to return to city work because she missed being a planning manager, which Parker-Bozylinski described as “one of my strong points.”

Parker-Bozylinski lives in Thousand Oaks with her husband. In her spare time she enjoys reading and yoga.