Michael DiGiorgio

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Michael DiGiorgio
Michael DiGiorgio.JPG
Mayor of Novato, California
In office
1999 – 2000, 2003 - 2004
Councilmember of Novato, California
In office
1995–2003
Director, Novato Sanitary Board
In office
2005–2014
Personal details
Born April 12th, 1940
New York, New York, U.S.
Died April 6th, 2014 (age 73)
Novato, California, U.S.
Spouse(s) Gordonna DiGiorgio
Profession Realtor

Michael DiGiorgio (born (1940-04-12)April 12, 1940) is an American politician. He is the former mayor of Novato, California and director of the Novato Sanitary Board. He was on the Novato city council from 1997 to 2003 and the sanitary board since 2005.

Life Before Politics[edit]

Born in New York, DiGiorgio's family moved to California in 1942. DiGiorgio attended Menlo High School and the University of Arizona before a three-year stint in the United States Army. After returning, he completed his undergraduate degree in international trade at San Francisco State University and went on to get his MBA at Pepperdine University.[1]

DiGiorgio has held a myriad of careers before entering politics. He worked on BART with Kaiser Sand & Gravel, spent time as a stockbroker, worked for the family business at DiGiorgio Corp., managed Sun Aire commuter airliner out of Palm Springs, California, worked for aircraft speculators out of London, UK before finally moving to Novato in 1989 and purchasing a video store.[2]

Entry into Politics[edit]

After the closure of Hamilton Air Force Base in 1993, DiGiorgio was disturbed by the US government's reluctance to return the land to the city of Novato. In efforts to get the land turned over, he joined the Hamilton Advisory Board, and after a successful stint there, was asked to run for city council. He had also been on the Novato Homeless Commission. His early efforts helped transform Hamilton and Ignacio into the thriving communities they are today.[3]

City Council Years[edit]

The Hamilton projects consumed much of DiGiorgio's early years in the council. The abandoned naval houses in Ignacio were demolished and multi-million-dollar homes were constructed. Hamilton base itself was revitalized with businesses and million-dollar homes. While not the only driving force behind it, DiGiorgio had a lot to do with the area's renovation.[4]

His final years in the city council featured a few bitter controversies. DiGiorgio unsuccessfully lobbied for the dredging of Bahia, a community in northern Novato that had seen its ocean access vanish.[5] He was also part of an investigation, what was later deemed a witch-hunt, by fellow council member Pat Eklund in the "streetgate" scandal. While never even officially accused of any wrongdoing, Eklund's negative campaigning helped lead to DiGiorgio's defeat in the 2003 election.[6]

The Sanitary Board[edit]

Yearning to re-enter politics, DiGiorgio ran unopposed for the Novato Sanitary board in 2005. Controversy followed DiGiorgio there as his efforts to privatize the sewage plant's operations were met with rabid opposition from the workers' union. This led to a bitter campaign when DiGiorgio was up for re-election in 2009.[7] DiGiorgio managed to win despite all the negative campaigning.[8]

Personal life[edit]

DiGiorgio married his wife, Gordonna Vuksich in 1977. She is currently an addiction counselor. He has one son, Anthony, who was born in 1982 and is a neurosurgeon at LSU in New Orleans.[9] He passed away on April 6, 2014 from Acute Myeloid Leukemia.[10]

References[edit]

  1. ^ "Novato Chamber of Commerce". Retrieved 2009-12-22. 
  2. ^ "SmartVoter Profile". Retrieved 2009-12-22. 
  3. ^ "Marin IJ". Retrieved 2009-12-22. 
  4. ^ "All Marin Homes". Retrieved 2009-12-22. 
  5. ^ "Novato City Council Minutes". Retrieved 2009-12-22. 
  6. ^ "Novato City Council Minutes". Retrieved 2009-12-22. 
  7. ^ "Marin IJ". Retrieved 2009-12-22. 
  8. ^ "Marin IJ". Retrieved 2009-12-23. 
  9. ^ "LSU Neurosurgery Residents". Retrieved 2012-01-18. 
  10. ^ "Marin IJ". Retrieved 2014-04-07. 

External links[edit]