It’s a Grind coffee shop owner and former Signal employee Brad Lanfranco won a special election for the Region 1 seat on the Castaic Town Council Saturday, with all of 27 votes out of 38 total ballots cast.
Robin Yule received the other 11 votes during the four-hour special election at the library on Sloan Canyon Road.
The region includes the Valencia Commerce Center along with the Hasley Hills, Hillcrest Park, Live Oak and North Bluffs neighborhoods.
“I’m surprised it even made the news,” Lanfranco said of the election.
Lanfranco estimated there are about 700 registered voters in the region. Lanfranco fills the seat vacated by three-term Councilman John Kunak who died of a heart attack Sept. 28. Positions on the Town Council are unpaid and act as an advisory group for Los Angeles County Supervisor Kathryn Barger.
Lanfranco said he wants to bring the relationships between Castaic and Santa Clarita together, improve infrastructure by keeping tax dollars in the town and have more law enforcement in Castaic.
“I get a lot of feedback from the community,” he said.
The other members of the Town Council are: President Jessica Chambers, Vice President Bonnie Nikolai, Secretary Hal Neff, Treasurer Jim D’Addario, Lloyd Carder II, Jeremiah Dockrey, Sandia Ennis, Jim Idleman and Jeff Preach. Neff was seated on the council in November, filling a long-vacated seat.
“We are very excited to have a new member join as a replacement director of Region 1,” Nikolai said in a statement Monday evening. “Even though we can never truly replace John Kunak, we are looking forward to working with Brad Lanfranco to keep Castaic thriving. As always, we strive to do the best we can serve the interests of Castaic.”
Lanfranco said he was approached about a month ago to run for the seat before deciding to run for it.
“I had a couple of people come to me asking about it,” he said.
Lanfranco has had management roles at Sears, General Electric, Morris Multimedia, EW Scripps and the National Write Your Congressman before becoming owner of the coffee shop.
Lanfranco had been advertising director at The Signal from 2012 to 2013.
Lanfranco is a Marine veteran and is a member of the Rotary and the Elks Lodge.