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  • LSMV March 2020: Government Topic Day

    On March 6, 2020, Santa Maria Valley Leadership Class of 2020 met to learn about the Government in our area. The range of speakers could not have been better. As one member said, “This has been one of the best topic days yet!” We heard from legends such as Jim Glines, Chairman and Co-Founder of Community Bank of Santa Maria, Larry Lavagnino, Former Mayor of Santa Maria, current Mayor of Santa Maria, Alice Patino and outgoing County Supervisor, Peter Adam. We heard from many other great leaders in our community as well, but for the sack of brevity, we are going to focus of Glines, Lavagnino and Adam.

    To begin our day, we started with none other than, Jim Glines, and Larry Lavagnino. It could not have been a more entertaining way to start the day. We heard stories of Santa Maria going back to the early 1900’s and Glines told the captivated group of future leaders that there are two keys to the historical success of Santa Maria. First, the leaders of the 1920’s and 30’s were forward thinking when it came to water. By making sure that we were supplied with water for generations to come they could not have prepared us better. The second key of our leaders is the tradition of being fiscally responsible. As the leaders of our community have not taken on debt to pay for new buildings, but instead have focused on having them paid for before the ribbons are even cut.

    As these two legends in our community were there to talk with us about Santa Maria and leadership, we cannot ignore the keys of leadership they shared with us. The first key they gave us was a quote by Benito Mussolini, “It is better to live one day as a lion, then 100 years as a sheep”. The second key of success comes right from them growing up in the 1940’s – hard work. Both keys can be seen in the members of the leadership class of 2020.

    After a short break for lunch, the group went to the County Building on Betteravia to meet with Peter Adam, outgoing County Supervisor. He brought with him a surprise visitor, Bob Nelson, newly elected as County Supervisor to replace Adam. We learned many things from Nelson and Adam, from how the County functions to the crisis the County is facing with almost $500 million of deferred maintenance to the upcoming redrawing of the vote districts. These two gentlemen really showed the dedication to the future of Northern Santa Barbara County.

    One member of our group asked, “How can we, as leaders in our community, advocate for overcoming our current challenges?” Supervisor Adam told us the best way is to join committees such as the 2020 Citizens Redistricting Commission. This commission will be working on redrawing the lines of the voting districts following the 2020 Census. If you have any questions on the redistricting committee, reach out to your local County Supervisor.

    As there is only so much space on this page, but there is so much more that we could tell you, we must cut this short. But don’t worry! If want to be part of future topic day, you can be part of this amazing program during this next year. The next class start in August 2020 and the Chamber will start accepting applications soon. Keep an eye out for an announcement on how and where to apply!