Mayor London Breed and City Administrator Carmen Chu announce the departure of Nicole Bohn, Director of the Mayor's Office on Disability

Bohn advised the Mayor, policymakers, and departments citywide to make City programs and facilities fully accessible to Deaf and Disabled San Franciscans.
May 08, 2024

SAN FRANCISCO, CA---Today, Mayor London Breed and City Administrator Carmen Chu announced the departure of Nicole Bohn from the Mayor’s Office on Disability (MOD). Bohn has served as the director of MOD since 2017, during which time she has played a critical role ensuring that City programs, services, and facilities are accessible to people with disabilities.

Throughout her time at MOD, Bohn worked to advise City Departments, the Board of Supervisors and the Mayor on accessibility initiatives and local legislation that is responsive to the concerns of Deaf and Disabled San Francisco residents and visitors and aligned with the City’s goals and priorities. During the COVID-19 pandemic, Bohn worked closely with City departments to design and implement accessible response programs and disaster management initiatives specifically for people with disabilities. She also developed an Anti-Ableist Strategies Training, now available citywide, to help staff recognize and subvert unconscious bias toward people with disabilities and incorporate accessible and anti-ableist strategies into program design and service delivery. 

The Mayor's Office on Disability provides expert technical assistance to City Departments, the Board of Supervisors and the Mayor so that all City programs and facilities are accessible, responsive to, and usable by, San Francisco’s diverse community of people with disabilities. It is responsible for overseeing implementation and local enforcement of the Americans with Disabilities Act (ADA) and all other applicable disability rights laws and access codes. MOD also staffs the Mayor’s Disability Council, which provides a public forum for the elevation of disability access concerns.

“Under Nicole's leadership, the Mayor's Office on Disability has advocated for the rights of the disabled community and pushed forward innovative solutions that advance equity in our programs, services, and facilities,” said Mayor London Breed. “Nicole helped this city through serious challenges, including the pandemic when we had to work to ensure the health and safety of our disabled community was protected. I want to thank for her service to the City and County of San Francisco.”   

“Nicole has led the Mayor’s Office on Disability through tough moments, especially during the last several years of the pandemic, working tirelessly to help make San Francisco and all our programs and facilities safer and more accessible for people with disabilities. Her policy and disability access expertise have had citywide impacts, from housing and transportation projects, to technology, parks, permitting, and more,” said City Administrator Carmen Chu. “Throughout her tenure, Nicole has developed a reputation as a skillful collaborator, compassionate leader, and attentive teacher of anti-ableist strategies. We will miss her dearly and look forward to all the ways her leadership will continue to improve our community during her new chapter at DREDF.” 

Bohn will next serve as the next Executive Director of the Disability Rights Education and Defense Fund (DREDF), one of the nation’s most prominent civil rights law and policy centers. There, Bohn will continue her work to advance equality of opportunity, accessibility, and inclusion of people with disabilities through training, education, policy, as well as legal advocacy and litigation.

"It has been a privilege to serve as the Director of the Mayor's Office on Disability for the past seven years. While there is more to be done to elevate accessibility initiatives for persons with disabilities, I am proud of the work that MOD, my City colleagues, and the Disability Community have done and will continue to do together to help San Francisco be a home and destination of choice for Deaf and Disabled people," said Nicole Bohn.

“I have had the good fortune of working closely with Nicole for her entire tenure with CCSF,” said Shireen McSpadden, Executive Director of Department of Homelessness and Supportive Housing. “She has been deeply committed to ensuring access for all San Franciscans. She is smart, strategic, and compassionate. While we will certainly feel the loss of her presence in the city, I have no doubt that Nicole is the right leader for DREDF. I wish her all the best in her new position.”

“As a co-chair of the Mayor’s Disability Council, it has been an honor and a pleasure working with Nicole Bohn. She has been an invaluable mentor to me, and MOD will definitely feel her absence. I am very excited for Nicole in her new role as ED at DRE&DF, as I feel it will allow her to apply her wisdom, intellect, and passion for equity to make a more global impact on the disability community” said Sheri Albers, Co-Chair of the Mayor’s Disability Council. 

“I am deeply saddened Nicole is leaving as the director of the Mayor of Disability; she has guided the Mayor’s Disability Council to continue advocating and raising disability issues in SF,” said Alex Madrid, Co-Chair of the Mayor’s Disability Council. “Since I started being on the council in 2017, she has mentored me. I will miss our early dinner right after the council public meetings.”

Bohn has over 30 years of experience working on disability services and accessibility in San Francisco. Prior to serving as the director of the Mayor’s Office on Disability, Bohn served as the director of the Disability Programs and Resource Center at San Francisco State University, where she led compliance efforts and built programs to support accessibility and the principles of Universal Design. She also previously worked at the University of San Francisco, managing reasonable accommodation programs and policies. She began her career as a crisis intervention and reasonable accommodation counselor for individuals with disabilities. She holds a M.A. in Counseling and a M.F.A. in Writing from the University of San Francisco.

Following Bohn’s departure, Jennifer Johnston, Deputy City Administrator, will serve as the acting director of the Mayor’s Office on Disability.