Downtown Partnership Committees

Joining a Committee

Members have the opportunity to engage with a variety of committees dedicated to bolstering Downtown San Diego. Whether your interest lies in public policy, placemaking, quality of life or events, we have a platform for you to share your ideas to shape the future of our community. 

Until further notice, all DSDP committee meetings will be held virtually. If you are a member and would like to be added to the email list and digital invitations for these committees, please click the “Join” button below to be connected to the appropriate DSDP staff.  


This Committee monitors and advocates for public policy issues affecting the design, development, and economic health of Downtown San Diego and provides direction to the Executive Committee and Board of Directors on all matters under consideration by the Downtown San Diego Partnership.

Time & Frequency: Second Thursday of the Month, 8 – 9:30 a.m. 

Location: 401 B Street, Suite 100 (Downtown Partnership Office)

Committee Leadership

Chair: Marshall Anderson, California Strategies

Vice Chair: Elly Maienschein, Sharp HealthCare

Staff: Josh Coyne (


This group is focused on ensuring we have a comprehensive membership program offering the right mix of events, benefits, and value to retain and attract new members. Comprehensive membership is not only good for our members, but also helps grow the organization and deliver on our mission. View the Committee Charter.

Time & Frequency: Second Wednesday of the month, Noon – 1 p.m. 

Location: Zoom Meeting. Click “Join” below to request meeting information. 

Committee Leadership

Chair: Margie Newman, Intesa Communications Group, LLC 

Vice Chair: Angela Merrill Yon, Boretto + Merrill Consulting 

Staff: Kaitlin Payne & Kathryn Newstead 


This group is responsible for reviewing and providing guidance for the Downtown Partnership’s financial matters. Specifically, the committee reviews and assures internal controls processes and financial analysis for the organization. Primary focus points are as follows: maintaining accurate and complete financial records, preparing and presenting accurate, timely and meaningful financial statements to the board, helping the board understand the organization’s finances, budgeting and anticipating financial problems, safeguarding the organization’s assets, and complying with federal, state and other reporting requirements. 

Time & Frequency: Quarterly and during budget season (more frequently from January – March) 

Location: Zoom Meeting. Click “Join” below to request meeting information. 

Committee Leadership

Chair: Phil Rath, Rath Public Affairs 

Vice Chair: Steve Cushman, Cush Enterprises 

Staff: Justin Apger & Terri Johnson 


This group is responsible for the review and approval of the annual audit. A critical function of the audit committee is to oversee the organization’s internal controls and risk-management procedures. The audit committee becomes an extension of the board to assure proper financial management is in place. To carry out that function, the audit committee will meet with both management and the nonprofit’s auditors to gain an understanding of any risks or exposures facing the organization. 

Time & Frequency: Annually (November) 

Location: Zoom Meeting. Click “Join” below to request meeting information. 

Committee Leadership

Chair: Keith B. Jones, ACE Parking

Vice Chair: Nikki Clay, The Clay Company

Staff: Justin Apger & Terri Johnson 


This committee is a subgroup of the Planning and Public Policy Committee and meets to brainstorm different advocacy and philanthropic avenues that can be used to reduce the number and duration of people experiencing homelessness in Downtown San Diego.

Time & Frequency: Quarterly 

Location: Zoom Meeting. Click “Join” below to request meeting information. 

Committee Leadership

Chair: Steve Cushman, Cush Enterprises 

Staff: Josh Coyne


The Placemaking Committee will be tasked with implementing the Placemaking Blueprint, the Downtown Partnership’s long-term public space strategy to deliver vibrant and memorable public spaces. Downtown’s public spaces – our streets, pathways, squares, parks, and waterfront – are where we connect with the city and with each other to engage in commerce, express our creativity, and build community. View the Committee Charter

Time & Frequency: Quarterly 

Location: Zoom Meeting. Click “Join” below to request meeting information. 

Committee Leadership

Chair: Michele Vives, Douglas Wilson Companies 

Vice Chair: Stacey Lankford Pennington, SLP Urban Planning 

Staff: Sean Warner 


Voluntary non-partisan political action committee with a focus on candidates and initiatives that further the Downtown Partnership’s mission to promote an economically prosperous and culturally vibrant urban center. The Downtown San Diego Partnership PAC supports ballot initiatives and legislative champions that will prioritize economic development, reduce homelessness, and market Downtown to attract, connect, and retain talent. 

Time & Frequency: Monthly, or as needed 

Location: Zoom Meeting

Committee Leadership

Chair: James Lawson, Presidio Public Affairs Group  

Staff: Josh Coyne


This standing committee of the board is charged with overseeing the organization’s overall board development and governance efforts, with a focus on recruitment, engagement and retention of board members, in addition to monitoring the oversight function.

Time & Frequency: Quarterly

Location: Zoom Meeting. Click “Join” below to request meeting information.

Chair: Daniel Reeves, Juniper Strategic Advisory

Vice Chair: Heather Riley, Allen Matkins

Staff: Betsy Brennan & Justin Apger