About Us

Friends of North Sonoma

Our Mission … is to educate, advocate, and plan for the responsible growth of our neighborhood.

Our Vision… is to live in a vibrant, diverse, safer, and more resilient neighborhood that is growing responsibly… one with a more responsive, collaborative local government and fewer potholes.

Our Story… The Friends of North Sonoma are comprised of the residents of the unincorporated neighborhood just north of the Sonoma city limits, and other concerned members of the Sonoma Valley community. Our neighborhood includes the north side of E. Verano Avenue, all of Donald Street, and seven or eight additional streets, most of which terminate in dead ends.

Friends of North Sonoma first came together in 2019. Our formation was a reaction to the draft “Springs Specific Plan” and the surprise discovery that way back in 2012 Sonoma County planners had decided to annex our residential neighborhood into the commercial corridor along State Highway 12. This corridor runs through the communities of Agua Caliente, Fetters, and Boyes Hot Springs and was formerly known as the “Springs Redevelopment Area”. A lot of drama might have been averted if County officials had bothered to give us any notice and ask if we wanted to be annexed into a commercial corridor.

The shock of this discovery led to our first educational campaign:

To determine the processes driving the Springs Specific Plan and their direct impacts on our neighborhood. Our first objective was to inform and organize our neighbors, and to demand that the County correct its error of having included us in such a major redevelopment plan without any outreach or consultation.

As our organizational capacities have grown, we have expanded our educational and outreach activities to include other issues of importance to many in our neighborhood. These include wildfire preparedness, evacuation planning, reliable access to electricity and water, local hazard mitigation planning, community mapping, transportation safety and congestion, housing affordability, and access to affordable homeowners’ insurance.

Our Team

Meet your neighbors, the 100% volunteer Steering Team behind Friends of North Sonoma.

Friends of North Sonoma Steering Comm- by RPengelly-C-2020Sonoma Index Tribune
Selected Members of the Friends of North Sonoma Steering Team (Photo by Robbi Pengelly/Index-Tribune)

Friends of North Sonoma Steering Team

Bill Lurtz
Camille Bosque
Colleen Yudin
Gary Germano
Joel Trachtenberg
John Wheatley
Matt Lage
Maud Trachtenberg
Paul Rockett
Ricci Weatley
Steve Caniglia
Tom Conlon
Valerie Mathes
Vicki DeSmet