Joining boards and commissions in San Jose, CA

Learn how you can join one of San Jose’s 27 boards + commissions.

A picture of City Hall from the ground perspective.

Imagine yourself running the city alongside other dedicated residents.

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Picture this, you see that our city made the decision to allocate money towards a program or installation that you honestly feel could’ve been allocated somewhere else. But, what can you really do about something that’s out of your control?

Well, you can make your voice heard by serving as a volunteer member of one of San Jose’s 27 boards and commissions.

As a board member, you can weigh in on topics like downtown parking issues, advise on public art projects and grants, or contribute to historic development and preservation of landmarks.

Interested residents can apply year-round and are appointed by the City Council. To be considered, you must submit an application to the board or commission of your choosing.

🗳️ Who can apply?

Applicants should live within city limits of San Jose, but cannot be city employees. Pro tip: depending on the position, some commissions have additional requirements that may require an interview by the Council Appointment Advisory Commission.

📃 What are the term limits?

Most of the City’s boards observe a two to four-year term. If an incumbent resigns mid-term, an appointment is made for the remainder of the unexpired term. To make sure the time commitment fits with your personal schedule, you can view meeting times on each individual board or commission landing page.

🪑 Which boards currently have vacancies?

All vacancies are posted and updated on a monthly basis on the city’s boards + commissions portal. Here are a few that are currently open:

  • Airport Commission | 4 vacancies | Study, investigate, and review matters relating to the airport and how it can serve the public interest.
  • Arts Commission | 3 vacancies | Review art programs + acquisitions, and recommend funding for them to City Council.
  • Neighborhoods Commission | 16 vacancies | Review issues, policies, and programs to improve neighborhood quality of life.