The Umatilla County Fair Board of Directors will have two new faces at the fair this year.

The Umatilla County Commissioners appointed Lucas Wagner and Billie Jean Morris to the Umatilla County Fair Board on July 27 for four-year positions beginning Jan. 1, 2012. Both have extensive experience with the fair, according to Connie Caplinger, executive assistant to the Board of Directors. Morris is a regular volunteer in the fair office and Wagner has been involved with the fair for years through 4-H.

“We advertised for the positions and we had some very good applicants. It was very difficult for the interview team to make the decision as to which ones were going to be selected as board members,” she said. “We’re grateful that we had many people who had an interest in volunteering with the fair.”

Wagner and Morris will replace two board members — Spike Piersol and Buzz Brazeau — whose terms have expired.

Brazeau won’t be leaving the board, however.

“In looking at the kinds of activities and the planning that was going on with the fair, the commissioners have opted to bring on a new member to make it a seven-member board,” Caplinger said. “The commissioners have opted to extend Buzz Brazeau’s term with the new position. Buzz brings some very special skills and experience to the Board.”

Although they will not take office until January, both Wagner and Morris will take on a sort of “intern” role at the fair next week.

“When we have a Fair Board member’s term that is expiring, the year before it expires, we bring in the replacement so they can go through the process of the fair as a learning experience before they are a sitting Board member,” Caplinger said. “It’s worked very well in the past.”

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