Leading by Example
State, County Officials Honored by CSAC for Their Work
Dec. 6, 2018
CSAC’s 124th Annual Meeting provided an important venue to recognize the hard work and collaboration of state leaders and county elected officials, staff, policy-makers and CSAC staff. For new supervisors, the annual awards program also serves as a benchmark for excellence and superior service to the organization. Since 2018 was a banner year for county advocacy and legislation, this year also meant a number of important recognitions.
The highest award, the 2018 CSAC President’s Award honored Diane Cummins, special advisor to Governor Jerry Brown, who has worked closely with CSAC on numerous significant issues over the past eight years. Previously, Diane served as the key Department of Finance staff person on the 1991 Realignment, the 1997 assumption of state trial court funding, and the 1997 welfare reform effort that resulted in the CalWORKs program. Diane also teaches one of the most popular classes at the CSAC Institute, Financing California Counties: The History, on county finances and the state/county fiscal relationship. New supervisors and staffers will be well served to sign up for her next class in Tulare in January or in Sacramento this March. Check out the upcoming Course Guide for more information.
Distinguished Service Awards
As CSAC cannot work in isolation, the association relies on partnerships and coordination with elected officials and department leaders across the state.The Distinguished Service Awards recognize state officials who have worked hand-in-hand to help CSAC achieve its legislative priorities. This year’s honorees include:
- State Senator Bill Dodd, whose award recognizes his coordination and leadership in the successful bipartisan effort to bring a comprehensive wildfire recovery and prevention package together that included sweeping forest management reforms, $1 billion in funding for forestry and fire prevention projects, PUC Reform, and sound financial measures to keep utilities stable. At the same time, Senator Dodd played a leading role in preventing changes to wildfire liability law that would have devastated local government.
- State Senator Holly Mitchell was instrumental in accomplishing CSAC’s top priority this year through her leadership on the comprehensive legislative and budget package addressing homelessness. She continues to demonstrate strong support for health and human services funding that assists counties in providing critical services to all residents.
- Assemblymember Brian Dahle, a longtime leader in the Legislature fought for improved forest management strategies and wildfire prevention legislation. Assemblymember Dahle led a bipartisan effort to protect counties from changes to inverse condemnation and collaborated with his colleagues to accomplish the historic wildfire prevention package.
- Assemblymember Jim Wood was an invaluable partner in developing the wildfire prevention legislation, refusing to compromise on critical funding needs for the forest management and PUC reforms. This package is a major step forward for California that will protect counties, fire victims and rate payers while keeping our utilities fiscally-sound and helping to protect against future fire events.
- Director of the State Office of Emergency Services Mark Ghilarducci. From numerous wildfires across the state to the Oroville Dam crisis, Director Ghilarducci was key in assisting CSAC in the disaster response summit late last year was also invaluable to our membership.
Circle of Service Awards
CSAC’s Annual Circle of Service Awards provide recognition to county officials, staff and other CSAC members whose service to the county family, CSAC membership and CSAC goals are substantially above and beyond the norm. This year’s recipients fall into several distinct categories and include:
Retiring Supervisors with significant involvement in CSAC leadership:
- Riverside County Supervisor John Tavaglione,
- Santa Clara County Supervisor Ken Yeager, and
- Tulare County Supervisor Steve Worthley.
Wildfire response and/or related legislation:
- Napa County Supervisor Diane Dillon,
- Sonoma County Supervisor James Gore,
- Sonoma County Counsel Bruce Goldstein
- Shasta County Executive Officer and California Association of County Executives Immediate Past President Larry Lees,
- Ventura County Executive Officer Michael Powers.
- Los Angeles County Homeless Initiative Director Phil Ansell and
- Yolo County Supervisor Oscar Villegas.
Personnel and labor relations
- Yuba County Human Resources Director Jill Abel.
Past Presidents Lifetime Achievement Award
Finally, the Past Presidents Lifetime Achievement Award is a special recognition for a Supervisor, staff member or associate who made significant contributions to the association and County Family. This year’s award honors Sue Ronkowski for her 35 years of service to CSAC. Sue is enjoying her retirement with travel and rest.
The CSAC Officers, Board of Directors and staff congratulate all of this year’s winners and we thank you for your service to the County Family.