Recently I have received numerous inquires concerning my plans for the Clearlake City Council election.
After nearly three decades of public service to the city of Clearlake, I will not be seeking reelection. It is time to rest.
I began my public service career in the early 1980s when I became employed with the city of Clearlake. My long tenure with the city has provided me the landmark honor of becoming the longest serving employee in our city’s history.
When I first walked through the doors of City Hall seeking employment, I never imagined that one day I would ultimately become an elected official, receiving landmark votes twice in our city’s election history. That honor affirmed the trust the citizens of Clearlake placed in me. It was that trust that I carried with me each day of my elected tenure.
In 2004, as I ran for a seat on the Clearlake City Council, I made only one promise. My promise was to always work hard and always work in the best interest of our community. I never forgot that promise.
Each day I would remind myself that the things I did and the decisions I made could have a lasting effect on the lives and well-being of people. I knew I had the ability to impact lives, so I took my elected position seriously.
As the years rolled by as an elected official, the more I did made me want to do more to serve our community. There was always a new challenge around the corner to help make a bigger difference.
This “part-time” council job became a full-time job to me. There were many calls on my time, filling my schedule daily. Soon my whole life revolved around this council job.
Throughout my years on the Clearlake City Council, I have had the privilege of representing our city as a three-time mayor and two-time vice mayor.
I find it difficult to think of the many accomplishments that I was a part of during the last 30 years. It is impossible to sum up these accomplishments at this time.
One of my strongest passions was promoting safety for our seniors, our youth and our communities.
I was privileged to spearhead the Burns Valley Pathway project for senior safety, as I always believed seniors should be valued, supported and appreciated.
When a drunken driving tragedy struck my family, it kindled inside of me a passion to help others. I created the award-winning Team DUI to help educate our entire county on the true realties of driving under the influence with the educational focus on our youth.
Through Team DUI, many lives have been saved and many more will be saved.
During my years on the city council, I advocated for public safety, utilizing my many years of budgeting experience and knowledge to play a key role in building effective teamwork to help provide our police department the necessary resources to maintain public safety within our community.
Throughout my entire tenure on the city council, i never let the fear of challenge keep me from doing what i believed was in the best interest of our city.
I did what I felt was right, respecting individuals’ rights to their opinions. I faced challenges with honesty, integrity and respect, as the key to success was to be true and ethical to my principals.
I never compromised my values to achieve popularity.
My career with the City of Clearlake has been an amazing journey. Regrets after nearly 30 years – I have a few, but too few to mention.
At the end of the day I can reflect on how I served our community, knowing that the office I held was all about helping people, as the heart of our city is the people within.
To all of the citizens of Clearlake and the many wonderful individuals throughout the entire county, please accept my heartfelt gratitude for being part of my life and allowing me the opportunity to be part of the life of our communities.
I will always be proud to call Clearlake my home.
Judy Thein serves on the city council for the city of Clearlake, Calif.