BY Monica Lambert
John Blythe is passionate about the Kern River Valley and a strong supporter of the Kern Valley Healthcare District.
Blythe is one of two incumbent board members running for a new four-year term. He was appointed when a former board member passed away.
He is a third-generation member of the valley. His grandparents, Bo and Margaret Williams, started Paradise Cove; and the family still runs it today. They utilized the hospital facility often, and he wants to ensure that future generations will have the same privilege. He also noted the hospital’s importance as the largest employer in the Kern River Valley.
Blythe graduated from Kern Valley High School in 2004, studied business at Cerro Coso Community College and later entertainment business at UCLA. His career in the movie industry has taken him to different parts of the world; however, with the COVID-19 hiatus, he has enjoyed additional time to focus on board issues.
Not a stranger to a busy and sometimes chaotic schedule, Blythe is a former president of the Kern Valley Exchange Club and current West Coast Regional vice president of the National Exchange Club. He was the last president of the Kern River Valley Revitalization (KRVR) Council before its dissolution, and he served four years on the Kern River Valley Chamber of Commerce board.
“Of course, the government-mandated seismic retrofit is the biggest issue facing the Healthcare District,” Blythe told the Kern Valley Sun. “We are looking at alternative financing without having to burden the taxpayer into supporting another general obligation bond; and scaling down the retrofit within the requirements to meet the safety guidelines. For the first time in quite a while we are working on a strategic plan. We are focusing on patient relations, staff relations and offering more services for the community. This will attract the community to retain services locally and improve cash flow.”
“It’s my passion to be part of the team, and to elicit feedback from the community,” he said.