George A. Caravalho

It is with a heavy heart that we adjourn tonight’s meeting in memory of George A. Caravalho, the City of Santa Clarita’s first full-time City Manager and a man who was key in building the foundation of our City.

George passed away earlier this month at the age of 81.

He served as City Manager from 1988 to 2002 and was responsible for bringing the City Council’s vision to life and laying the groundwork for what the City of Santa Clarita is today.

George helped set up our City government, including our current City Hall.

He structured our City departments and crafted the City’s mission and philosophy.

He set the tone and expectation of service excellence for our community, as demonstrated by the City’s many award-winning programs and projects.

Prior to joining the City, George was the City Manager in Bakersfield from 1984 to 1988.

He also served on the Board of Directors for a number of organizations, including the American Red Cross, the Boys and Girls Club and the League of California Cities.

He brought his mastery of management and unmatched leadership skills to Santa Clarita and helped the City Council realize its vision for our City.

In the City of Santa Clarita’s 20th Anniversary book, George wrote the following that I’d like to share: “The vision was for a safe community with open space, good education for kids, trails, beautiful boulevards and parks, a natural river, multi-transportation systems, shopping, commerce and jobs.”

This vision – a safe, family-friendly place to live, work and play – is our reality today.

In 1996, George was recognized by the International City/County Management Association with the organization’s Mark E. Kean Award for Excellence, which is given for outstanding contributions to government.

In his career, he earned more than 40 awards for innovation and excellence.

The Santa Clarita Sports Complex is named after George A. Caravalho and is a place where our residents can come together to swim, play racquetball and basketball, skateboard, host special events and much more.

After his time serving the City of Santa Clarita, George became the Director of Dana Point Harbor in Orange County.

He retired in 2008 and moved up the coast to Santa Cruz.

George Caravalho was a valued mentor, colleague and friend to us on the City Council, as well as so many members of the City Staff and residents in our community.

We are saddened by his passing, and our thoughts are with his family and friends during this time.

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