Government / Politics

Valdivia ends 16-year run on Hollister City Council

Veteran councilwoman recalls good times, tough times during tenure

Hollister City Councilwoman Pauline Valdivia expressed her gratitude to colleagues, city staff and her constituents Monday at her final meeting after 16 years as an elected official.

"Sixteen years is a long haul," she said near the end of the meeting. "We worked with what we had to work with. There was good times, rough times. I'm really going to miss you" she said to her fellow councilmembers.

Valdivia, who will continue in her role as executive director of the local senior services agency Jovenes de Antano, said she appreciated how city employees weathered recent financial storms and noted that she looked forward to being "on the other side of the fence" so she will be more free to advocate for causes in which she believes.

Born and raised in Hollister, Valdivia said she believed in "putting your community in the forefront" and that the city is "going to be seeing some great things in the future."

Mayor Ignacio Velazquez told Valdivia, "We as a community can't thank you enough for all you've done and continue to do."

City Manager William Avera, who said he has worked with 20 councilmembers in his 20 years with the city, thanked Valdivia for her support of him regarding affordable housing and senior housing projects.

Hollister Police Chief David Westrick said Valdivia is "very connected to the community" and that the council is "losing a really important resource in our council right now."

Shari Stevenson wrapped up her four-month stint as a councilmember Monday, having filled the seat vacated when Councilman Robbie Scattini moved out of the district. The council on Dec. 9 will hold a special meeting at 6:30 p.m. to adopt a resolution ratifying the certified election results and administering the oath of office to new councilmembers Karson Klauer and Mickie Solorio-Luna along with new City Treasurer Cecilia Rios.

Adam Breen

Adam Breen has been a San Benito County resident since 1980 and graduated from Sacred Heart School and San Benito High School before earning a bachelor's degree from California State University, Fresno. A father of two sons, Adam has taught newspaper, English and yearbook at SBHS for the past decade, after six years as a magazine editor for Santa Clara University. He previously was editor of the Hollister Free Lance and content director for BenitoLink.