This year’s El Presidente, Tim Taylor, has celebrated more than 30 Fiestas in his lifetime living in Santa Barbara. Taylor, who has been a mortgage banker in Santa Barbara for 15 years, loves this tradition because, he said, “it’s a holiday when the community comes home-friends and family who have moved over the years take this opportunity to return and visit the city when it’s at its most vibrant.” Taylor chose this year’s theme, Viva La Comunidad, because he wanted to acknowledge the “Santa Barbarans who donated time and services, nonprofits, leaders who support our youth, and the men and women who keep us safe.”
Fiesta this year is especially exciting because the parade should be one of the best in recent memory, according to Taylor. In addition to the myriad floats and equestrian show, there will be about 200 sailors in this year’s parade due to its commemorative theme as the centennial of the flower festival celebrating the visit of the Great White Fleet of U.S. naval forces in 1908.
Taylor is celebrating another anniversary with this year’s Fiesta by choosing Sharon Dorsey for Honorary La Presidenta since she was the Spirit of Fiesta exactly 50 years ago. Her husband, Dave Dorsey, is the Honorary El Presidente and a perfect example of the kind of person Taylor wants to commemorate with this year’s theme of community-Dorsey is a former under-sheriff who has been involved in community youth sports for years.
The Dorseys lived three doors down from Taylor when he was growing up and epitomize his idea of the Santa Barbara community. Taylor has been involved in Fiesta since 1989 when he began volunteering, has spent seven years on the Board of Directors of Old Spanish Days, and is looking forward to a spectacular celebration this year.