December 2020 Official Word


Official Word

December 2020

Volume 21, Issue 12



  1. President's Message
  2. Events Calendar
  3. Newly Designated Clerks
  4. My Experiance Having a Mentor
  5. Athenian Dialogue Update
  6. New Member Spotlight
  7. Sponsors















































































































































































































































































































City Clerks Association of California

CCAC President's Message
Anthony Mejia, MMC

As we prepare to say goodbye to 2020, I want to take a moment to reflect on what I am grateful for this past year, and I encourage you to find the little gems in your life that made this year survivable, if not enjoyable. I am grateful that my friends and family who contracted COVID-19 made a full recovery. I am grateful that my team makes coming to work an enjoyable experience filled with laughter. I am grateful that CCAC introduced me to lifelong friends that I adore. And, I am most grateful for my husband, who is my motivation, my conscience, and the most talented and creative person I know. As we look forward to the New Year, I’ll share that at my house, we don’t set typical resolutions like going to the gym or losing weight. Instead, we resolve to work on being better communicators, exercise more forgiveness, and one year I committed to being more confrontational (can I just say – Mission Accomplished). So as we prepare ourselves for a better year, I encourage you to set some personal goals, find your gratitude, and express your authentic self!

I also want to take a moment to recognize the fantastic City Clerks that have recently retired. These individuals have represented the municipal clerk profession with integrity, distinction, and dedication:

  • Terri Cook, City Clerk, Belmont
  • Vicki Kasad, City Clerk, Ontario
  • Beth Schott, City Clerk, Westlake Village
  • Arne Simonsen, City Clerk, Antioch
  • Kelly Wetmore, City Clerk, Arroyo Grande

And, of course, I honor the forever enthusiastic and passionate Stephanie D. Smith, Murrieta City Clerk. Stephanie has spent a lifetime working to improve the communities that she has served. She is a mentor, trainer, and leader in the municipal clerk profession. She is a humanitarian who serves families fleeing from abuse and reconnects children with incarcerated parents. She is an author who recently completed the book “Values Based Goal Setting: How to Dream Big and Live the Life You Were Meant to Live.” I want to express my sincere gratitude to Stephanie for serving as an exemplary role model to myself and others – Thank You, Stephanie! I am sure that I may have missed other outstanding City Clerks that have retired but please know that we all thank you for paving the way and allowing us to stand on your shoulders.

Although we are still working to finalize the speaker line-up, I am excited to announce that the upcoming CCAC Virtual Conference keynote speaker will be Anton Gunn, a leading authority on socially conscious leadership. Anton served as a member of the South Carolina House of Representatives, Director of External Affairs for the U.S. Department of Health and Human Services, and senior advisor to President Barack Obama. Anton’s presentation will focus on creating a culture of engagement, empowerment, and innovation that transforms communities. Watch this video to get a glimpse of the excitement that Anton brings to each of his presentations.


After a long and challenging year, I commend all of us for not only surviving but thriving under these stressful circumstances. Some of us may have endured layoffs, staffing reductions, or budget cuts. Yet, we still served as leaders and innovators facilitating public participation, maintaining access to municipal services, and even coordinating an election with record-breaking voter turnout, all during a global pandemic. Thanks to you, the municipal clerk profession is shining brighter than ever before. In closing, I wish you and your family a safe and prosperous New Year filled with lots of love, happiness, and purpose.

Events Calendar

TTC 102/103/106
January 2021 - Virtual
Click here for more information.

Northern Nuts & Bolts
February 2021 - 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:

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

Walking With the Wind by John Lewis
Facilitated by Stephanie Smith, MMC
February 6, 2021
Click here for more information.

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

Visit CCAC Events Calendar for all upcoming education opportunities.

Newly Designated Clerks

Jennifer Ekblad, MMC - City Clerk, City of Coronado

Sylvia Bermudez, MMC - Clerk of the Board, Coachella Valley Water District

Jessica Blair, MMC - Communications Director/City Clerk, City of Half Moon Bay

Teresa Willock, MMC - Senior Deputy City Clerk, City of West Sacramento

Jessica Matson, CMC - Executive Assistant/Deputy City Clerk, City of Arroyo Grande

Susan Blankenship, CMC - City Clerk, City of South Lake Tahoe

Kristian Duarte, CMC - City Clerk Services Technician III, City of Corona

Claire Lopez, CMC - Assistant City Clerk, City of Vista

Jasmine Pernicano, CMC - Records Technician, City of Poway

Karen Morrison, CMC - Senior Records Coordinator/Deputy City Clerk, City of Ontario

My Experience Having a Mentor

Christine Lopez, City of Eureka

I have been employed with the City of Eureka since August 2015 as a Paralegal and very much enjoy working with City staff.  In December 2019, I worked closely with the City Manager's office on projects and soon became a Deputy City Clerk.  While my official position is Paralegal, my new role at the City is both a Paralegal and Deputy City Clerk.  I loved the new Deputy City Clerk job tasks and wanted to learn everything possible in my role as a Deputy City Clerk.   In January 2020, I became of member of CCAC and IIMC, which are both very rewarding. 

To quickly become immersed in my new role as Deputy City Clerk, I attended the Technical Training for Clerks (TTC) Series 300 in March 2020, located in Riverside, California.  Wow!!  I had so much fun meeting Maureen Kane and her terrific staff and receiving the incredible Municipal Clerk training.  I set my goal to become a Certified Municipal Clerk (CMC).  During the week in Riverside, I met Vicki Kasad, MMC, who told me that I would be assigned a mentor to help on my journey to become a CMC.  By the end of the week, Vicki advised me that my new mentor would be April Sousa, CMC.  To my surprise, April lived in the same County as me – Humboldt County! 

April Sousa has been fantastic, helpful, and a great source of information from day one.  Upon returning from Riverside, April reached out to me via email and invited me to a local meeting of other City Clerks, which I thoroughly enjoyed.  April also included me in emails of upcoming CMC training opportunities, invitations to Athenian Dialogues, and providing feedback essential in my career journey to become a CMC.  April takes the time to send a friendly email, reaching out to see if I need any assistance and offering non-stop support.

I have attended many virtual CCAC and TTC classes and other workshops over the past few months and attended multiple virtual Athenian Dialogues.  It is incredible how quickly the points do add up.  I was quite thrilled when April sent me an email inviting a one-on-one Zoom meeting to review my point requirements.  April reviewed the CMC classes I have taken during our Zoom meeting and those I plan to take.  She also provided valuable advice relating to Athenian Dialogues, future training I should plan to take, and discuss in more detail obtaining the CMC certification.   I was very grateful for the one-on-one Zoom meeting and the gift to me of April's time. 

It is so wonderful to have a mentor, someone who has been where you are, and obtained a goal you are currently seeking.  I feel very fortunate to have April as my mentor because she has the experience and provides me an opportunity to glean an understanding of the best ways to accomplish obtaining a CMC.

Having a mentor is extremely beneficial in your journey to obtain a CMC and provides the confidence you need and clarifies your goals. Having a mentor is also extremely helpful in getting your CMC designation because it brings different solutions and perspectives to your immediate success and, in turn, results in a positive cascading effect.


Ashton Gout, CMC (Athenian Dialogue Coordinator)

2020. What a year. What an experience. What an adjustment. Or should I say, adjustments! I want to thank everyone for being open to the new Athenian Dialogue virtual format, as we continue to push forward into our new normal. As we close 2020, I am excited to announce that Athenian Dialogues are going to be offered once a month to ensure that we provide our members with professional educational opportunities for those members pursuing CMC/MMC designations.

Please see the upcoming scheduled dialogues for 2021 and keep checking back for future offerings:

January 8/9 - The Submission - Facilitated by Peggy Hawker

February 6 - Walking with the Wind: A Memoir and the Movement - Facilitated by Stephanie Smith

To sign up for these, or any other virtual and educational opportunities, please visit our CCAC educational calendar here:

COVID-19 Policy Update: On November 14, 2020, the IIMC Board of Directors voted to extend the allowance of Athenian Dialogues to be conducted virtually using video conferencing software through June 30, 2021.  All attendees must participate via Zoom, with audio and video on for the duration of the dialogue.




Vanessa Rosales, Deputy City Clerk

City of Pittsburg

[email protected]

 Jackie Sillman, Elected City Clerk

City of Yuba City

[email protected]

 Ruthie Greenwood, City Clerk

City of Reedley

[email protected]

 Michelle Radcliffe, City Clerk

City of Monte Sereno

[email protected]

 Daniela Rodriguez, Administrative Assistant

City of Rancho Cucamonga

[email protected]

 Ashley Bussart, City Clerk

City of Winters

[email protected]

 Kris Hargrove, City Clerk

City of Etna

[email protected]  


Sponsors (click image)