Meet Santa Cruz CAC: Juan Hidalgo

Juan Hidalgo has been serving Santa Cruz County residents and members of industry for 13 years. In December of 2015, he was appointed Agricultural Commissioner. Prior to his appointment, he served for three years as the Deputy Agricultural Commissioner overseeing the Pesticide Use Enforcement program. A graduate of the University of California, Davis with  a Bachelor’s in Animal Science, Mr. Hidalgo, also serves as the County’s Sealer of Weights and Measures, and the Director of the Mosquito and Vector Control Division.

In his current role Mr. Hidalgo oversees programs in the Agricultural Division, Weights and Measures Division and Mosquito and Vector Control Division. The program goals for all three divisions include protecting the food supply, protecting the environment, and safeguarding human health, in addition  to promoting equity in the marketplace and ensuring pesticides are used safely and effectively. Additional goals include quickly detecting and effectively controlling human disease vectors, preventing the entry of and achieving early detection of agricultural and environmental pests, and responding to citizen and regulated business inquiries and complaints quickly and effectively – all of which is not a small job. Speaking of the challenges, Mr. Hidalgo says “Perhaps the most challenging thing about my job is making sure that I continually process and evaluate all the information I receive on a daily basis to ensure our programs run effectively and to ensure any concerns from stakeholders are addressed.”