September 2020 Official Word


Official Word

September 2020

Volume 21, Issue 9



  1. President's Message
  2. Treasurer's Message
  3. Events Calendar
  4. Newly Designated Clerks
  5. New Members
  6. Membership Update
  7. Professional Development Update
  8. Special District Clerks Article
  9. Sponsors

















































































































































































































































































































































































































































































City Clerks Association of California

CCAC President's Message
Patrice Olds, MMC





Dear Clerk Colleagues,

I have a song from Rent stuck in my mind:

 Five hundred twenty-five thousand six hundred minutes
Five hundred twenty-five thousand moments so dear
Five hundred twenty-five thousand six hundred minutes
How do you measure, measure a year?

In daylights, in sunsets
In midnights, in cups of coffee
In inches, in miles, in laughter, in strife
In five hundred twenty-five thousand six hundred minutes
How do you measure, a year in the life?

I think this year I have felt every one of those minutes keenly. It has been quite a year of challenges and growth opportunities for our profession, our organizations, our communities, and the entire world. While we’ve had to deal with health fears, job fears, disappointments, cancellations, racial and social justice issues, protests, and are now reeling from the consequences of devastating wildfires and tremendous loss of life from COVID-19 – we have also stepped up and truly embraced our purpose as public servants in profound ways. Through the unease and unrest, I’ve felt immense pride in seeing clerks respond to their community’s needs and in seeing them say yes to the need and find innovative ways to meet that need. It’s not just in pivoting to remote meetings on a dime, but it’s in leading our organizations with kindness, good spirits, a can-do attitude, courageously embracing change, and in being the person who gets things done. In the times of strife is when our character is revealed. Clerks are shining brightly in these times.

“It is only in our darkest hours that we may discover the true strength of the brilliant light within ourselves that can never, ever, be dimmed.” – Doe Zantamata

I began this year with the theme of powerful partnerships and wanted to highlight how much better we are when we honor and build those partnerships and relationships. Again and again, throughout this year, I have seen examples of these powerful partnerships. With our wonderful vendors who stepped up to support the profession by hosting virtual trainings, with the League stepping in to give us a space to share ideas, with the education committee completely redoing the education model, with our institute directors rising to the challenge of the remote environment, in our communities in how we are partnering with the school districts to repurpose park and recreation facilities for learning environments for those in need, with our public works departments working with restaurants to create outdoor dining spaces, with our staff who step up to say I got it – I’ll do it – Yes we can. Thank you to everyone quietly doing the important work of public service. Sometimes its just about just putting one foot in front of the other day after day.

“Courage doesn’t always roar. Sometimes courage is the quiet voice at the end of the day, saying, “I will try again tomorrow.” – Mary Anne Radmacher

Thank you for allowing me the opportunity to lead this association in this year of challenges and great growth opportunities. With a deep gratitude and pride I want to thank the Board of Directors for how they have stepped up to ensuring the profession is supported by the association with updated financial and educational policies, by raising the scholarship thresholds, and embracing a long-term strategic vision to address the changing needs of the profession through a strong membership association. It has been an honor to serve beside you all. Thank you.


Treasurer's Message:

CCAC has added a new feature for payment of membership dues and other educational events. You can now pay by using your bank account information. Soon you will see the option to pay via eCheck. If you choose the eCheck option you will be asked how would you like to pay. If you choose “Pay Now”, you will be asked to enter your checking account information (routing number, account number and check number). This is yet another way to make your payment options easy and convenient. If you have any questions, please contact Yvonne Spence, MMC, Treasurer at [email protected].

Events Calendar

CCAC Education Workshops

Intersecting Emotional and Social Intelligence with Leadership Effectiveness (Region 1)
October 16, 2020 at 9:00 a.m. - Virtual
Click here for more information.

Legislative Affairs Workshop (Region 7)
September 30, 2020 at 9:00 a.m. - Virtual
Click here for more information.


Athenian Dialogues 

Your CCAC Athenian Leadership Dialogue Committee has been hard at work scheduling and coordinating upcoming virtual ALDs to ensure that this educational opportunity continues to be offered for those pursuing their CMC/MMC and/or fellowship through IIMC!

Upcoming virtual dialogues are as follows:

Becoming by Michelle Obama
Facilitated by Stephanie Smith, MMC
October 3, 2020 at 9:00 a.m.
Click here for more information.

dare to lead by Brene Brown
Facilitated by Kathy Flamson, MMC / April Sousa, CMC
October 30/31, 2020
Click here for more information.

dare to lead by Brene Brown
Facilitated by Kathy Flamson, MMC / April Sousa, CMC
November 7, 2020
Virtual! Second Offering!
Click here for more information.

The Boys in the Boat by Daniel James
Facilitated by Peggy Hawker, MMC
November 14, 2020
Click here for more information.

Leaders Eat Last by Simon Sinek
Facilitated by Laura Nieto, MMC / Ashton Gout, CMC
December 5, 2020
Click here for more information.

The Submission: A Novel by Amy Waldman
Facilitated by Peggy Hawker, MMC
January 8/9, 2021
Click here for more information.

If you are interested in facilitating an upcoming virtual ALD, please contact April Sousa at [email protected].

“The Born a Crime ALD was my favorite of all ALDs I have attended. The virtual environment causes me no distress relating to travel/travel time and the associated expenses for traveling. I hope that the virtual ALD setting will continue with vigor even after COVID-19 settles”. Bonnie T. Williams, City Clerk, City of Whiteville, NC

“Because our travel/training budget has been slashed due to Coronavrius, I have been paying for courses that apply to my MMC certification out of pocket. Not having to pay for airline tickets, hotel rooms, and food has made it possible for me to continue with my educational goals, so I do appreciate the IIMC offering these online programs!” - June Lemos, City Clerk, Fort Bragg, CA

Visit CCAC Events Calendar for all upcoming education opportunities.

Newly Designated Clerks

Jessica Contreras, MMC - Deputy City Clerk II, City of Chino Hills




Amy Herman, City of Point Arena
[email protected]

 Sherri Brusseau, San Jose-Evergreen Community College District
[email protected]  

 Gladys Mecum, City of Concord
[email protected]

 Martha Aguirre, City of La Puente
[email protected]  

 Tamara Cusano, City of Simi Valley

[email protected]

 Juana Espinoza, City of Lindsay

[email protected]

 Sarina Friend, City of Rocklin

[email protected]

 Rose Chaparro, City of Santa Paula

[email protected]



Marc Donohue, MMC (Membership Services Director)

Everyone should have received a membership renewal email from CCAC on or around June 15, 2020, for the annual 12-month membership renewal. Membership renewals are due on September 30, 2020. Memberships not renewed by September 30th will be considered lapsed memberships and you will not be eligible for scholarships or member-rates for the annual conference and educational sessions.

To receive a copy of your invoice, please login to your CCAC account to retrieve the correct invoice for your membership dues. If you are having issues generating your invoice from your CCAC account, please email [email protected] and we can generate the invoice and email it to you.

On behalf of the entire CCAC Executive Board, we thank you for being a member and renewing your membership! If you have any questions about this new membership renewal process, please contact Membership Services.

Professional Development Update 
Shawna Freels, MMC


As I end my 2-year term as CCAC Professional Development Director and pass the baton, I have to share the tremendous amount of gratitude I have for the members of my Professional Development Committee.  Dawn Abrahamson, Denise Anderson-Warren, Kerry Bigelow, Holly Charlety, Jerryl Soriano, April Sousa, Vicki Kasad, Peggy Kuo and Mark Numainville are the team of brilliant Clerks who have brought forward the bold ideas, and creative new ways to improve our delivery of education and scholarships to support members in their professional development. This dedicated group worked behind the scenes to find financial sponsorship to support education, created and instructed trainings, cultivated trainers, re-thought how scholarships are issued and successfully lobbied for additional monies, developed resources to support Region Directors with their workshops, transitioned CCAC to virtual learning, built a learning library, brought mentorship to the newest of clerks and wholly dedicated themselves to your professional success. Undoubtedly the finest group of professional Clerks I’ve had the opportunity to work with - You guys ROCK!

Fall Region Workshops  

Regions are back on track after the summer with fresh new virtual Region Workshops. On September 30th Region 7 will be holding a workshop with legislative affairs experts who will detail best practices in tracking, proposing and lobbying on State and Federal legislation. September 30th and October 1st Region 13 will be conducting a workshop on managing the new Council Member orientation and onboarding process with a very unique training duo – a highly experienced City Clerk and a veteran former City Clerk who has just become a newly elected Council Member. Plans in the works for additional workshops in October and November.

Institutes Gone Virtual a Big Success

I’m thrilled to say the MMC Institute Virtual Leadership Series of six (6) different sessions has completely sold out for the sessions being held throughout September and October, all geared toward those of you working to earn your Master Municipal Clerk (MMC) or Certified Clerk of the Board (CCB) credential.

Equally as exciting is the success of our first virtual TTC session #101 “Local Government Overview” which sold out at 100 attendees. More sessions encompassing portions of TTC Series 100 will be held throughout the fall and winter.   

For updates on CCAC programming and scholarship opportunities, or to register for other upcoming trainings, check the Education & Events page of the CCAC website.

Special District Clerks
April Sousa, CMC

Special District Clerks are a part of CCAC too!

Did you know that there are over 30,000 Special Districts in the United States, according to the last US Census figures, and around 3,400 Special Districts in California alone? Often, this form of government is considered the most local of local governments, providing essential services to constituents such as water, wastewater, transit, parks and recreation, lighting, etc.

The work of a Special District Clerk is often a little more specialized, and while elections are run slightly differently, many of the same state statutes and governing laws apply to Special Districts the same as Cities. So, what is so special about Special Districts? They are created for the people of a community to deliver an essential service that a city or county does not currently provide – this means that Special Districts can exist within incorporated areas.

A year ago, I moved from a position as a City Clerk to a Special District Clerk. The tools and experience I learned here, through CCAC, have been invaluable. Our Special District Clerk cohort within CCAC is growing, and now sits at 122 Special District Clerks as members of CCAC. If you know a special district clerk that is not a part of CCAC, I want to encourage you to reach out to them and show how CCAC is not just for City Clerks.

-April Sousa, CMC

Board Secretary

McKinleyville  Community Services District

Sponsors (click image)