Learn about how to become a Board or Commission member. Get the training you need and learn what it takes to become a member.

What are City Boards and Commissions?

Boards and commissions are specific interest groups that people in Austin can join to take part in the city's government. These can range from cultural topics (like the African American Resource Advisory Commission) to environmental (Winter Storm Review Task Force), and many others. These groups help shape and influence rules and laws by giving different viewpoints for the City Council to consider.

Applying to be a member

If you would like to join a board or commission, you can fill out an application online. We keep all applications for one year. If there is an open spot on the board you chose, we will look at your application.


All board members must complete a training program that includes both in-person and online parts. This training helps you learn how to carry out your duties as a board member.

The in-person training happens every month. To sign up, email the Board and Commission Coordinators at bc@austintexas.gov

The online training has different modules, which you can complete in any order you like. These modules are:

  • Budget and planning training
  • Conflict resolution
  • Overview of City government
  • Robert’s Rules of Order
  • Texas Open Meetings Act

In addition to the training modules, you can also check the online workbook to learn more about the City’s vision, values, code of conduct, and other meeting documents.

What you need to know about being on a Board or Commission

  1. Starting Your Role:
    • Before you start your job on the board, you need to submit two papers to the City Clerk’s Office: the Oath of Office and the Acknowledgement of Responsibilities.
    • You will then have 90 days to finish your training after you start. 
    • Email the Board and Commission Coordinators to learn how to register and get training. 
  2. Your Responsibilities:
    • Being a board or commission member takes time and effort. You need to read and learn about different topics and be prepared before each meeting.
    • In meetings, you'll listen to hours of discussion from your team members and people from Austin. You'll help make decisions that can affect many people, including your friends and neighbors.
  3. Helping the City Council:
    • You'll talk about many topics that help the City Council make decisions. Sometimes they will use your ideas directly, and other times your ideas will be one of many they consider.
    • Your job is to think about what's best for everyone, not just what you think.
  4. Following the Rules:
    • Your group is official and must follow certain rules and laws. For example, all meetings must be open to the public because of the Open Meetings Act.
    • People will closely watch what your group decides, and they will talk about it. This includes the public, the City Council, the media, and others. You need to know the rules well and stay focused on your responsibilities.
  5. Representing the City of Austin:
    • How you act in and out of meetings is important. Everyone will notice your behavior.
    • You should always be respectful and make good choices. Even when you are not in meetings, you represent the City of Austin. If you always behave well and make good decisions, you will positively affect how people view the City. 

Being a member of a board or commission is a big job, but it's also very rewarding. You get to help make important decisions that shape the future of Austin!