Joining Advisory Boards and Commissions

Advisory boards and commissions serve as a bridge between the community and government. By working with or providing feedback to one of these advisory groups, health advocates can raise awareness about the impact many policy decisions have on public health and equity.

By “boards and commissions,” we mean any advisory group that provides oversight on and recommendations to a legislative body or public agency. Members are typically volunteers appointed to serve for a defined term. A group of elected officials may also be called a “board” or “commission” – for instance, a school board or a board of supervisors – but these groups have different responsibilities and are not included in this resource. The names and types of boards and commissions vary tremendously from place to place, so we encourage you to check with local agencies and officials to learn about opportunities available in your community. See our section for tips on how to get involved with boards and commissions in your community.

Here are some examples of boards and commissions addressing the following areas:

  • Planning & Land Use
  • Community & Economic Development
  • Transportation
  • Food Environment
  • Environment & Environmental Health
  • Parks & Open Space
  • Housing
  • Health & Human Services