Mad River Union
HUMBOLDT – At the close of his second and last term, Third District Supervisor Mark Lovelace is being described as a hard-working public official who gained strong support and admiration within and beyond his district.
Lovelace was honored at the Dec. 13 Board of Supervisors meeting – his last meeting as a county supervisor. Harbor District Commissioner Mike Wilson will take his place in early January.
State Assemblymember Jim Wood presented Lovelace with a joint resolution from himself and Senator Mike McGuire, saying that “it’s an honor for the senator and I to recognize your leadership, your time on the Board of Supervisors and to wish you the best in what you ultimately do when you step down.”
Wood was scheduled to make a morning presentation updating supervisors on his work, but he was delayed by a landslide on State Route 299. He said honoring Lovelace was “another reason to make an extra effort to be here today – I did not want to let this opportunity pass to recognize your service and present you with this resolution.”
Representing Congressman Jared Huffman, John Driscoll thanked Lovelace for his work and voiced Huffman’s “deep appreciation for what you’ve done here during your eight years of service.”
Driscoll added, “I believe you’ll leave a lasting and positive impact on the area.”
Supervisors Virginia Bass and Estelle Fennell said they enjoyed working with Lovelace, who was board chair this year. Bass presented him with an ornamental glass piece commemorating his year as the board’s chair.
Wilson gave Lovelace a “heartfelt thank you for representing the Third District, from the Third District.” He said residents of the district are “overwhelmingly satisfied – more than satisfied – with Mark’s representation.”
Wilson said that the range of issues and work Lovelace has done is “astounding,” including advancement of broadband telecommunications, support of Klamath River restoration and re-establishment of the California State Association of Counties’ Coastal Counties Committee.
On behalf of the North Coast Resource Partnership, former Humboldt Bay Municipal Water District Manager Carol Rische presented Lovelace with a resolution. Lovelace has worked on the multicounty partnership’s policy review panel since 2011 and the resolution states that Lovelace is “held in the highest regard and is admired by his colleagues.”
After thanking everyone for their comments, Lovelace described county government as a team effort and emphasized the importance of each supervisor’s skill set and background. “That diversity helps us get things done,” he said.
He also expressed “deep appreciation” for the work of county staff. “I thought about that every single day of this job – the importance of our staff,” he continued.
Political circumstances influenced Lovelace’s decision not to run for re-election. Into his second term, the makeup of the board changed, and he was often a lone defender of environmental principles, particularly in votes involving land use.
In supporting Wilson as the next supervisorial representative for the district, Lovelace said the board shifted from a policy-geared entity to a politicized one and someone with better ability to deal with it was needed.
In an August 2015 press release announcing his decision to not seek a third term, he listed establishment of the McKay Community Forest, advocacy for removal of Klamath River dams, lobbying for statewide marijuana regulation and reform of coastal planning processes as some of his major pieces of work.