Still basking in the afterglow of her successful campaign, county supervisor-elect Maria VanderKolk breezed into a Ventura radio station at 6 a.m. Monday to play her favorite tunes, chat with the disc jockeys and thumb her nose at the political Establishment.
“My generation is going to have to deal with some of the problems that have been created over the last 20 or 30 years,” VanderKolk, 25, told the listeners of classic rock station KZTR-FM.
VanderKolk’s gig as a guest disc jockey was her first public act since defeating incumbent Supervisor Madge L. Schaefer, 48, last week.
“We’ll start seeing more and more young people with some energy and some new ideas and perspective get into office,” said the supervisor-elect, who has billed herself as the east county’s environmental candidate.
Last Friday, after the results of the District 2 race were finalized, VanderKolk accepted an invitation from the radio station to co-host an hour of music Monday morning. Disc jockeys Jimmy Baron and Jeff McMurray figured that the supervisor-elect might be a station listener, and she is.
“The message I was trying to get across this morning is that I’m just a normal person just like anybody else,” VanderKolk said after the show. “I’m young and I enjoy rock ‘n’ roll music.”
While Baron and McMurray looked on Monday morning, VanderKolk selected a few of her favorite ditties: “Legs” by ZZ Top, “Dirty Laundry” by Don Henley, “Bobbie McGee” by Janis Joplin.
“When you’ve got a county supervisor that’s into Don Henley and Janis Joplin, you’re doing OK,” Baron said. “You’re a cool county.”
But not all the station’s listeners were as approving. After the classic tunes, VanderKolk insisted on playing her favorite Michael Jackson piece--"Man in the Mirror,” a song about making the world a better place. A hard-core rocker called to complain.
“What are you going to play next, Debbie Gibson?” the caller asked, referring to a popular teen-age singer.
One listener wanted to know if VanderKolk would appropriate county funds to upgrade the deteriorating Ventura Pier.
The supervisor-elect said she had never been to the pier but would study the issue. The caller scoffed and hung up.
VanderKolk explained: “I’m not a career politician, I never intended to be and there’s a lot of things I don’t know.”
Baron quipped: “That’s OK, we’re not career radio people and we never pretended to be either.”
Another caller wanted to know how many boyfriends VanderKolk had in high school, but the disc jockeys decided to screen the call. Someone else asked the supervisor-elect if she would set up a branch of the University of Colorado, her alma mater, in Ventura County. VanderKolk, joking, said she would look into it.
Finally, a couple of listeners called to wish the supervisor-elect well when she assumes her $47,844-a-year position in January.
Before VanderKolk left the station, night disc jockey Jerry Anderson stopped her to ask a question: “All I want to know now is do you have a fan club yet and can I head it? We’ll print up T-shirts and everything.”
VanderKolk, clutching her Michael Jackson compact disc, laughed.