Citizen Architects: AIACC Members’ Service on Statewide Boards and Commissions

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Architects have a legacy of civic leadership and advancing public policy on behalf of the natural and built environment. The AIACC is proud of its members who make significant contributions to society through their service on local boards, councils, planning commissions, and statewide boards and commissions. The AIACC is actively engaged with the Governor’s Appointments Unit to identify opportunities for architects in public service. As appointing authority, the Governor has the power to make about 2,000 appointments, including almost all state department heads and officials in key policy-making positions, except for constitutional officers. The governor also has the authority to appoint several hundred available positions to various boards and commissions.

While architects bring a diverse perspective to any office, and many serve as subject matter experts on various state agency task groups and committees, of particular interest to the architectural community is having an appointed architect representative on the California Building Standards Commission (CBSC), the Seismic Safety Commission (SSC), and the State Office of Historic Preservation.

  • The CBSC is responsible for administering California’s building codes, including adopting, approving, publishing, and implementing codes and standards. Appointment to this commission is of particular importance to the profession as the code adoption process for the next CALGreen Code (and integration with the International Green Construction Code (IGCC) is already underway.
  • The SSC is responsible for investigating earthquakes, researching earthquake-related issues and recommending to the Governor and Legislature, policies and programs needed to reduce earthquake risk. Appointment to this commission is of interest to the profession as when the immediate emergency has passed, there is a short, vital window of opportunity to better prepare the public for the next disaster, and to assist the government in making rational decisions about permanent changes to mitigate future damage.
  • The Office of Historic Preservation administers state and federal historic preservation programs and provides technical assistance to federal, state, and local government agencies, organizations, and the general public with regard to historic preservation programs designed to identify, evaluate, register, and protect California’s historic resources. Architects have a legacy of preservation, conservation and protection of objects in the built environment with historical significance.

The architects appointed to these three agencies play a significant role in the development of regulations and policies affecting the safety of California’s citizens in the built environment. As is common practice when transitioning from one Administration to the next, appointees whose terms are set to expire are notified that they will not be reappointed. This is not a reflection on the appointee’s performance but rather the new administrations creating of vacancies for the appointment of those that support its policies and goals. This does not preclude the appointee from seeking reappointment via vetting of the new administration. In fact, the Administration gave notice to existing appointees serving on each of these commissions, that they would not be automatically reappointed, but were eligible for reappointment and would need to resubmit their application to the new appointment secretary. To that end the AIACC has submitted letters of support for reappointment and garnered the support of allied organizations.



The AIACC represents the interests of more than 11,000 architects and allied professionals in California. Founded in 1944, The AIACC's mission supports architects in their endeavors to improve the quality of life for all Californians by creating more livable communities, sustainable designs and quality work environments.

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