The city and County of Boulder is currently recruiting residents to participate in some of the many boards and commissions that deal with everything from planning to human relations. Maeve Conran spoke with Robin Valdez who oversees the 27 citizen led Boards and Commissions in Boulder County.
Valdez says anyone who is a resident of Boulder County can apply to serve on a Board of Commission, US citizenship is not required. Valdez says that the most underrepresented groups are 18-49 years old and also lower income residents. “So we’re hoping to reach out to those folks to see if they’re interested in applying for the Boards and Commissions in Boulder.”
In their effort to have more diversity on the boards and commissions, the county has been working with Elicia Goodsoldier who is training people of color and marginalized communities on the ins and outs of serving on a board. Goodsoldier says that people who typically participate on boards and commissions tend to be a much older, whiter and more affluent population and not representative of everyone in the county.
“When you look at take for example the times or the places of where board meetings are held, often times it’s just not a good time for a lot of these people, especially because they work full time, they have children. Some times the meetings are held in the evening time or held really early in the morning and those are some of the things that we’re starting to tackle within the county about how do we best provide an opportunity for those who are living with low income as well as people of color to serve on the boards.”
There will be a workshop on Thursday January 12 from 5.30-7.30pm at the Boulder County Hub on Coffman Street in Longmont where practical help will be given to people interested in serving on a county board and commission.
Go to www.BoulderCounty.org to find out more information. The deadline to apply to serve on a commission is January 17.