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Michele Jenkins began serving on the COC Board of Trustees in 1984 – that’s 32 years ago. Ronald Reagan was still in his first term as president. VHS and Betamax were still competing to be the standard for home video.

Why would someone want to serve in an elected position for more than 30 years? Could it be ego? Prestige? A sense of entitlement?

Even if Ms. Jenkins wasn’t at the center of controversy, even if she wasn’t in constant conflict with the very faculty whose support and partnership should be integral to her performance as a member of the board, 32 years is simply too long to hold any public office – yet alone one that requires an ability to adapt to changing times.

Fresh ideas are needed at College of the Canyons, as well as new leadership replete with integrity. Enter Jerry Danielsen, candidate for College of the Canyons Board of Trustees Area 4.

I have known Jerry for many years. He teaches music lessons to my son. He owns a recording studio in Canyon Country and is an accomplished musician in his own right.

He is a composer and author and has made his living in the music industry his entire life – a career that began as a music student at College of the Canyons.

His integrity is beyond reproach; his commitment to students unbreakable.

Jerry understands the importance of bridge-building. He is smart, competent, caring and is committed to improving the quality of education for the students at College of the Canyons, an institution which I have heard Jerry refer to as “a gem at the heart of the Santa Clarita Valley.”

I encourage voters in Area 4 to make a much-needed change at this educational gem and vote for Jerry Danielsen on Nov. 8.

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