Supervisor Kate Sears, who has represented Marin County’s District 3 since June 2011, on Tuesday was elected president of the Board of Supervisors for the first time as part of the board’s reorganization.
Sears replaced District 5 Supervisor Judy Arnold as Board President by a 4-0-1 vote; Supervisor Susan Adams was absent. Supervisor Katie Rice was elected vice president and Supervisor Adams elected second vice president.
“I’m honored and excited about being board president in 2014 and look forward to working on behalf of all of our Marin residents,” Supervisor Sears said. “Certainly there are challenges ahead. As a county, and as a community, we face issues now and into the future that require us to harmonize different interests and step up our personal involvement.”
Sears, a Sausalito resident, grew up in Southern Marin, where she has lived most of her life. She earned a doctorate in political science from the University of Michigan and a law degree from Harvard. She worked 16 years in private practice specializing in employment litigation and labor law, then nearly six years for the California Attorney General’s Office.
She became involved in local government by serving on the Sausalito Planning Commission and eventually was appointed to the District 3 Supervisor’s seat by Gov. Jerry Brown to replace the late Charles McGlashan. She was elected to the post in 2012.
Duties of the board president include managing the flow of board meetings, working with administrators to set agendas, signing documents on behalf of the board, representing the county at government and special events and playing a lead role as a county spokesperson, in addition to the many other standing obligations that each supervisor has to local and regional boards and commissions.
Sears said her priorities as board president include addressing sea-level rise, expanding energy efficiency including solar opportunities, developing gray-water programs and promoting water stewardship. Addressing traffic challenges, expanding use of public transit and enhancing equity through education and decent wages also are high on her list.
“Broadening our notions of community and encouraging positive individual engagement will be key to effectively tackling these issues and the many others that are important to our residents,” she said.