Gina Nestande, Mayor

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Gina NestandeGina Nestande was born and raised in St. Louis Missouri.  After graduating from the University of Missouri with a BS in Education, Gina Nestande moved to California in 1989 to pursue her dream of becoming a professional triathlete.

Her hard work paid off and within a few years, Gina was traveling the world, competing in Iron-man Triathlons and other endurance events while working as a substitute teacher, eventually entering the MBA program at the University of San Diego.  

In 1996, Gina moved to Palm Desert where she balanced being a homemaker and raising five children with volunteering at Sacred Heart Parish and School.  Over the past 16 years, her role at Sacred Heart has grown significantly. She now serves as Sacred Heart’s Development Director with responsibilities including event planning and fundraising for the school and church. Gina’s fundraising efforts have extended to other organizations as well, a practice consistent with her values of helping others and giving back to the community.

In 2005, Gina met former State Assemblyman Brian Nestande. As single parents who shared interests in politics and community service, they had a lot in common. They married and made a life together with a combined family of seven children.

Today, their eldest daughter works as a beautician in Palm Desert with three children attending the University of Arizona in Tucson.  Their three younger children attend local schools in Palm Desert. 

Newly elected to the City Council in 2016, Gina looks forward to serving the City of Palm Desert with the same passion and zeal she has shown in the private sector, while continuing her service with volunteer organizations and local schools. 

Office Hours: Members of the public are invited to meet with Mayor Pro Tem Nestande by appointment or during her regular office hours from 4 p.m. to 5 p.m. the first Monday of every month.


University of Missouri – B.S. Education – 1988

University of San Diego – Studies in the Master of Business Program – 1995

Cal State University – Information Management – 1996

National University – California Teacher Credentialing Coursework – 2010/2011

Certificated in Multiple Subjects and Single Subject Social Studies

University of California – Cross cultural, Language and Academic Development (CLAD) certificate – 2011

Work Experience

Development Director Sacred Heart School

Substitute Teacher Desert Sands Unified

Licensed Real Estate Broker

Volunteer Community Participation

Rotary Club of Palm Desert

Chamber of Commerce Palm Desert

Parent Board - Sacred Heart School

Volunteer Palm Desert High School

Volunteer Xavier College Prep

Former Palm Desert Youth Soccer Coach

Former YMCA Basketball Coach

Contact Mayor Nestande