Placer County is mourning the death of Bill Santucci, a long-time member of the Board of Supervisors recognized widely as a devoted public servant with a common-sense approach to government, commitment to principle and deep concern for the welfare of his constituents.
Bill passed away unexpectedly on Wednesday, May 7.
The Board of Supervisors will adjourn its Tuesday, May 13 meeting in memory of Bill.
“It was indeed a privilege to serve on the Board with Bill Santucci,” said current Chairman Jim Holmes. “He taught us, by his example, how to conduct ourselves as elected officials and as board members. It was always a delight to see Bill and Norma at events after he stepped down from the Board. He was a complete gentleman and I will miss him terribly.”
Bill was on the Board of Supervisors for 12 years, serving three one-year terms as chairman. He stepped down in January 2007 after deciding not to run for a fourth term on the board.
“Those of us who had the honor of working with Bill know that he provided exceptional leadership in his role as a County Supervisor. Bill was known for his common-sense approach and the concern he had for the welfare of County employees,” County Executive Officer Thomas M. Miller said in a message to county employees Wednesday morning. “Our deepest sympathies are extended to his wife, Norma, during this time of mourning. We will all miss Bill.”
Even after he stepped down from the board, Bill continued to serve Placer County. His board successor, Rocky Rockholm, appointed Bill to serve as the 1st District representative on the Placer County Planning Commission.
“Bill was a very close friend. I had had a great deal of respect for him,” Supervisor Rockholm said. “Bill was a fine example for all of us, and it will be my desire to conduct my life in the manner Bill did.”
In June 2007, the Board of Supervisors honored its former colleague by naming its new South Placer Justice Center in Roseville after him. It is now known as the Placer County –Bill Santucci Justice Center.
Last December, the Board of Supervisors honored both Bill and Norma with commemorative coins under a county citizen-recognition program that salutes outstanding citizens with long track records of community service.
Bill also was a long-time member of the Roseville City Council who served as the city’s mayor for four years.
While on the county board, Bill consistently championed the needs of his district and its residents, while also being a strong advocate for the interests of the county as a whole. He balanced the need to address everyday neighborhood issues such as trash removal and potholes in roads with the need to grapple with complex, long-term issues that affect the future of the entire county.
Bill considered himself a public servant, saying local government is government at its best because the public has direct contact with their elected officials.
“The first word that comes to me is ‘compassionate,’ ” said E. J. Ivaldi, Bill’s long-time administrative aide when asked to describe his former boss.
Now a county supervising planner, E.J. added, “I consider myself fortunate to have had Bill as a mentor and friend. I will miss him dearly.”
Memorial services will be private. The Santucci family suggests that in lieu of flowers, any memorial donations be made to one of the two following charities: The Gathering Inn, P.O. Box 297, Roseville, CA 95678; or Tommy Apostolos Fund, P.O. Box 291, Roseville, CA 95661.