Dan Marks, AICP
Senior Advisor

Dan Marks, AICP


Master of City Planning – University of California, Berkeley (1980)


American Institute of Certified Planners (AICP), American Planning Association



About Dan

Dan has more than 30 years of experience as a local government land use planner, including 16 years as a Community Development Director and Planning Director. He has served in several California jurisdictions including Berkeley (Director, 2003-2012 and Zoning Officer, 1995-97), Fremont (Planning Director, 1997-2003, Associate Planner, 1988-90), Napa (Principal Planner, 1990-95). After retiring from full time public service in 2012, he has been a local government management consultant. His consulting work has including interim assignments as Community Development Director for the cities of Vallejo, CA (2012-14) and Benicia, CA (2014-15), and as principal analyst for improving the land use and building permit processing functions for over 25 California jurisdictions, including Alameda County and the cities of Pleasant Hill, Santa Cruz, Lafayette, San Leandro, and Santa Rosa.

As Director of Planning and Development for the City of Berkeley, Dan instituted numerous procedural improvements to allow for a more certain and timely development review process. He also won awards for a groundbreaking Climate Action Plan and a Downtown Plan which resulted in transforming Berkeley’s downtown. In virtually all of the cities where Dan has been a manager, he has taken divisions and departments in crisis and created stable and strong teams, streamlined development processes, and significantly improved the relationship of the department to the community and to building and design professionals.

Dan specializes in streamlining permit processing for both land use entitlements and building permits, improving community development department functional alignment and structure, identifying methods for ensuring appropriate community engagement, assessing the use of technology in permit processing, and facilitating improved communication between permit reviewing agencies. He has expertise in zoning tools, historic preservation, Housing Elements, Climate Action Plans, and the California Environmental Quality Act.

Dan has Master of City Planning (MCP) degree from the University of California, Berkeley (1980) and has been a member of the American Institute of Certified Planners (AICP) since 1984. He has taught in UC Berkeley’s Department of City and Regional Planning and is a member of the Planner Emeritus Network. Until recently, Dan was on the Board of the Greenbelt Alliance, a Bay Area regional planning organization, and he has previously been on the Board of the San Francisco Planning and Urban Research Association (SPUR), a planning-advocacy organization.