City receives 7 applicants for parks opening 

Santa Clarita City Hall
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The city of Santa Clarita received a bit more attention this time with its applications for an opening on the Parks, Recreation and Community Services Commission. 

The Santa Clarita City Council reopened the nominations last month after the previous appointee, Rob Cruikshank, stepped down before he was to be sworn in after questions were raised about his residency and the process. 

Rob Cruikshank was nominated to fill the seat previously held by his father, Don Cruikshank, a longtime business owner who worked in event planning, on the five-person advisory group. Don Cruikshank died in November. 

This time around, there were seven applicants, including Di Thompson, who was one of just two candidates in the previous round. Based on established council practice, City Councilman Bill Miranda is expected to nominate one of the city residents on the list to fill the vacancy through an appointment process at an upcoming meeting.  

Historically, the council has ratified one nominee from each council member for city commissions such as this one. Don Cruikshank had been Miranda’s appointee. 

The newly verified applicants include: Kenneth Dean; Sharlene Duzick-Johnson; John Estrada; Christian Gadbois; Mark Hudson; John Lite; and Di Thompson.

Dean, a former City Council candidate, is an interior designer who lives in Saugus. 

Duzick-Johnson is a Realtor and former Saugus Union School District and College of the Canyons governing board candidate who lives in Canyon Country. 

Estrada is a Saugus resident who did not list an occupation but cited experience with educational oversight committees. 

Gadbois is also a Saugus resident and former SUSD candidate who works as a director of emergency services. 

Hudson, a Valencia resident, owns Funkyard Music Fest, a company that provides event-management services and consulting.  

Lite is a Saugus resident who owns and operates an agency that sells home and auto insurance and serves on the executive board of the Santa Clarita Valley Boys & Girls Club.  

Thompson is a Valencia resident and Realtor who serves on the board for the SCV Chamber of Commerce. 

The appointment process is expected to be on the next council agenda when it’s released Thursday.  

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