SAN LUIS OBISPO, Calif. -- The San Luis Obispo County Board of Supervisors held its first meeting since the death of Adam Hill.
The longtime Third District supervisor died last Thursday at his home in Shell Beach.
Board Chair Lynn Compton started the meeting Tuesday morning by leading the board in a moment of silence.
Afterwards, Second District Supervisor Bruce Gibson, who served on the board with Hill for more than 10 years, honored his colleague while speaking remotely.
"I was his friend," said Gibson. "I'm deeply saddened and so many of us are deeply saddened by his loss. He was an exceptional supervisor, and what set him apart was how deeply he cared about the constituency he served, especially those most vulnerable, those who had little in the way of material possession, those who lived in difficult circumstances. What struck me about Adam was that he cared that their government should work for them, work diligently for them, and not just served those who have more privilege."
Gibson continued, noting Hill's spirited personality, which often times would be on display during board meetings.
"He was a brilliant man, the most well read person that I've come into contact with in a very long time," said Gibson. "Widely curious about the world and absorbing a lot of important ideas and he brought those ideas to his public service. There is no doubt that Adam could have sharp elbows when he was in debate, but I don't fault him for that because that characteristic of his personality came from the very deep commitment he felt to see the right thing done.."
Hill was open with the public for several months about his battle with mental illness.
In July, Hill had said he was seeking specialized mental health care.
Earlier in the year, he stepped down as Chair of the Board of Supervisors.
In March, after a brief hospital stay, Hill admitted to attempting to take his own life.
Hill, who had recently won re-election in a hotly contested supervisor's race, said in a statement that he began to feel depressed in the weeks leading up to Election Day.
"I think the wider public should embrace is his courage in talking about his struggles with depression," said Gibson. "Attitudes towards mental illness of all sorts are changing, but it's through the personal action of people like Adam, to be able to bring those issues into the public conversation, and again, to motivate all of us to do better for those who suffer with mental illness and other affiliations."
Hill served the Third District, which includes much of San Luis Obispo, Pismo Beach, Grover Beach, Avila Beach and Edna Valley, since 2009.
"I send my deepest sympathies to his family, his loved ones, his friends, and will remember him for his dedication and his commitment to community," said Gibson.