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Board & Commission Guide

We hope that this information will serve as a guide for those who may be interested in serving on a board or commission (B&C) in the City of San Rafael. In order to apply for a board or commission there needs to be a vacancy, which can happen at any time throughout the year. You can find out when member terms are set to expire by reviewing our Roster of Officials.

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Step 1: Identify boards and commissions of interest.

Select a board/commission from the menu to get more information for each board/commission. Read their profiles to find out which board or commission you may be interested in, and whether or not you would be available and eligible to serve on that board. Becoming involved in a committee that interests you will help you remain focused and be an active participant.

Step 2: Investigate.

  • When can you apply? You can check out current vacancies or terms that will be expiring soon.
  • When and where do they meet? You can find this information on each board or commission's page.
  • Are you willing to commit the time needed to be a member of that board or commission?
  • Read the Municipal Code Excerpt or the Purpose/Requirements listed for the board or commission you are interested in.

Step 3: Fill out an application and submit it.

Apply either online or through the mail. Individuals that are interested in becoming a part of a board or commission are required to fill out an online application form, and you are welcome to submit a resume as well. Remember, the submission of your application does not guarantee an interview, so provide as much information about yourself as possible.

Step 4: Preparation

Once you have submitted an application to the board you are interested in, you need to begin to prepare for an interview. While your application to serve on a board does not guarantee the opportunity to be interviewed, it will be important to prepare yourself as much as possible. For example, if you apply to serve on the Planning Commission, it will benefit you to research the position and know what you are getting into - similar to a job interview. Go to our Boards and Commission page and select the Planning Commission on our website, review minutes, agendas and videos from previous meetings held, and contact the staff person in charge of the board to have any questions answered. Another great way to prepare is to attend one of the board or commission meetings - those meetings are open to the public and anyone is welcome to attend!

Step 5: The interview process

Generally, interviews are held at a special meeting prior to a City Council meeting on either the first or third Monday of the month. Each member of the City Council will ask one question related to the board or commission that you are applying for. Again, this is very similar to a job interview, so your research prior to the interview will help you gain knowledge and understanding of the position you are applying for. Following interviews, the City Council makes appointments during their deliberations and you will receive a call the next day to let you know the results of the interview.

Congratulations! You have been appointed...now what?

Each board or commission has a City staff liaison who will help you prepare for the meeting. You will need to come the City Clerk's office to be sworn-in prior to your first meeting, and there may be additional things you need to do as a board member or commissioner, such as filing an annual Conflict of Interest Form 700, or completing Ethics Training. Your City Clerk will be happy to fill you in about all of this and more!

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