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Cultural Commission

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The Cultural Commission acts in an advisory capacity to the City Council in matters pertaining to the enhancement of multi-cultural experiences and beautification of the City through art. The Commission makes recommendations to the City Council on programs/activities to encourage educational, cultural, sports, technical and governmental exchanges to help acquaint citizens of Santa Clara with cultural diversity here and abroad.

The Commission also recommends potential City-funding and support for community cultural groups, organizes some City cultural events, and makes recommendations to the City Council on the purchase and placement of public art. It also makes recommendations on the City’s international exchanges, working closely with the Santa Clara Sister Cities Association and other supportive groups.

It organizes cultural events and activities, such as the annual Summer Concerts in the Park series, the biennial Indoor Sculpture Exhibition, the Franklin Square Street Dance, and the Friday Night Live performances. It also develops international people-to-people contacts designed to enhance cultural exchanges, communication and understanding with special emphasis on encouraging and coordinating activities with Santa Clara's three sister cities: Coimbra, Portugal, Izumo, Japan and Limerick, Ireland.

The Cultural Commission consists of Commissioners that are volunteers and are appointed by the City Council. To be eligible, you must be a registered voter and resident of Santa Clara, and may not hold any paid office in, or be employed by, the City of Santa Clara. For details call the City Clerk's office at (408) 615-2220. The Cultural Commission may also be contacted by email at 

Questions? Call the Community Recreation Center, 408-615-3140 or email

Holiday Home Decorating Contest:

The City of Santa Clara’s Cultural Commission invites the community to participate in the Annual Holiday Decorating Contest. We are encouraging City of Santa Clara residents and businesses to participate in the contest by decorating your front yards and exterior of homes. Good Luck!

How does it work?

  1. All City residents and businesses are encouraged to decorate the exterior of their homes or business in Holiday-themed décor. 
  2. Applications to enter the decorating contest must be completed online no later than Monday, Dec. 16, 2019, by 11:59 p.m., by visiting
  3. Three winners will be selected to be awarded in three (4) categories – 1) Residential; 2) Business; 3) Neighborhood; 4) People’s Choice
    • Residential, Business and Neighbordhood will be voted on by Cultural Commissioners, and People’s Choice voted online by community.
    • You can only enter in one category (Residential, Business or Neighborhood) and People’s Choice.
    • Applications must be submitted by 11:59 p.m., Monday, Dec 16, 2019.

Contest Rules 

  1. You must be a Santa Clara resident or business located in Santa Clara.
  2. Contest is only for residential properties (homes, apartments, condos and townhomes) and businesses. Judging is based on decorations of the exterior of residence/business only.
  3. You must live/work at the home/business being entered.
  4. Judging will take place after the closing of the contest on Monday, Dec 16, 2019.

This survey has been closed. Click here to go to the full list.

Cultural Commission Monthly Meetings

  • Meets: Generally meets on the 1st Monday of each month at 7:00 pm
  • Place: Senior Center- Room 231,1303 Fremont Street
  • City Staff Liaison: Parks & Recreation– 408-615-3140

Commission Members

Teresa Sulcer

Term Expires: June 30, 2023
(First Term)


Louis Samara 2017 1 Louis Samara

Term Expires: June 30, 2022
(First Term)


Harbir K. Bhatia Harbir K. Bhatia

Term Expires: June 30, 2020
(First Term)


Niha Mathur 2018Niha Mathur

Term Expires: June 30, 2021
(First Term)



Debi von HueneDebra von Huene

Term Expires: June 30, 2023 
(First Term)


Jonathan Marinaro 2018Jonathan Marinaro

Term Expires: June 30, 2021
(Partial Term)



Candida - CCCandida Diaz

Term Expires: June 30, 2020
(Partial Term)


11/02/2020 7:00 PM - 9:00 PM Not Included
12/07/2020 7:00 PM - 9:00 PM Not Included
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