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Lillian Boyd, Dana Point Times

The Fifth District of Dana Point will vote for a city council representative for this first time in November since the city converted to a districted system in 2018. Michael Villar, a Capistrano Beach resident, has officially announced he will throw his hat into the ring for the 2020 election.

In 2018, Districts 1, 2 and 3 voted in Councilmembers Joe Muller, Richard Viczorek and Jamey Federico, respectively, and they are currently serving their four-year terms. This year, constituents in Districts 4 and 5 will vote for their representatives. Councilmembers Debra Lewis and Paul Wyatt hold at-large seats that Districts 4 and 5 will replace.

According to a press release, Villar is a 17-year resident and a retired U.S. Marine Cops pilot and commissioned officer, as well as a director in the construction industry. He received a bachelor’s degree in sociology from UCLA and a master’s degree in computer science from the Naval Postgraduate School.

“My approach to City Council will foster an environment of civility and respect while always putting our residents and businesses first. As we recover from the COVID pandemic, it is critical that city council members work together to help our residents and local businesses recover,” Villar said. “Leadership is not always about being in charge; sometimes it means getting behind someone else and doing your part for the greater good.”

Villar says his campaign intends to focus on preserving the Capistrano Beach community’s friendly, small-town feel, protecting residential neighborhoods, enhancing beautification, preserving public safety and cultivating economic recovery.

His wife, Denise Villar, is a para-educator at Palisades Elementary and a former PTA President at both Palisades and Shorecliffs Middle School. Their three children all attended Palisades Elementary School and Shorecliffs Middle School. Their daughters currently attend San Juan Hills High School and their son is a sophomore at Santa Clara University.

“I love this community and plan to live here the rest of my life. I would be honored to serve my neighbors as Dana Point’s 5th District City Councilman,” Villar said. “I have a passion to preserve and enhance our residents’ incredible way of life,” Villar said.

However, Villar is not the first to announce his intention to run for the fifth seat. In January 2019, former Councilmember John Tomlinson filed paperwork indicating his intention to run again in 2020. While Tomlinson has never confirmed his candidacy to Dana Point Times, the Dana Point City Clerk’s office received his Candidate Intention Statement—also known as a California Fair Political Practices Form 501—on Wednesday, Jan. 30. He campaign committee has since submitted the required expenditure reports.

A candidate for state or local office must file this form for each election, including reelection to the same office. The form must be filed before the candidate can solicit or receive any contributions or before any expenditures are made from personal funds or on behalf of a candidacy.

Dana Point Times asked Tomlinson if he would remain involved in politics upon his departure from council in November 2018. He answered that if he’s called upon, he will be ready to serve in “any necessary capacity.”

The Dana Point City Council election will be held Tuesday, Nov. 3. Should Councilmembers Wyatt and Lewis choose to run for re-election, they would compete for the Fourth District seat.

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Lillian Boyd Lillian Boyd is the senior editor for Picket Fence Media and city editor for Dana Point Times. She graduated with a degree in journalism from Humboldt State University. Her work experience includes interviewing incarcerated individuals in the Los Angeles County jails, an internship at the Pentagon covering U.S. Army news as well as reporting and anchoring for a local news radio station in Virginia. Follow her on Twitter @Lillianmboyd and follow Dana Point Times at @danapointtimes.  

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