By Lee Hubbard
Growing up in San Francisco, Dominica Henderson rode the Muni all over the city. Living in Bay View and later in the Courtland Hill area, she took the 24 Fillmore and the 22 Divisadero to school at St. Dominic’s Catholic School in the Western Addition, and later to Urban High School on Page and Masonic Streets.
“I would ride to school and all over the city on Muni,” said Henderson. “It was a good system, and it worked for me growing up.”
Muni has been a bus system that has served San Francisco over the years from dusk to dawn and beyond. Thousands of San Franciscan’s use the bus system to get to every corner of the city, from the Sunset to the San Francisco Airport in San Bruno. Muni sits underneath the San Francisco Municipal Transportation Agency, which also deals with parking, traffic engineering, taxi regulation and bicycle and pedestrian for the city of San Francisco.
While the SFMTA has benefited San Francisco, not all of the city has been equally served by the SFMTA. In the black community of San Francisco, people have complained about SFMTA’s bus service and switchbacks, which make it longer for buses to get into and around black communities, specifically Bayview Hunters Point.
Managed by Jeffrey Tumlin, the SFMTA has a board of directors that oversees Tumlin’s leadership and dictates policy for the SFMTA. Henderson was recently nominated for the SFMTA board by Mayor London Breed.
“Dominica has experience working in public services, the ability to lead, and a commitment to the community,” said Mayor Breed. “Her ability to bring different perspectives to the table will help as we work to stabilize and restore public transit to support our neighborhoods and our economic recovery.”
The SFMTA Board of Directors provides policy oversight for the safe and efficient movement of people and goods in San Francisco, in accordance with the San Francisco Charter and the Transit First Policy.
After attending Wellesley College in Massachusetts, Henderson pursued a Master’s Degree in Public Policy and Urban Planning from the Kennedy School of Government at Harvard University. In 2007, she moved back to San Francisco and started working on HOPE SF, which aimed to redevelop San Francisco Housing Authority Housing projects, including West Point, Alice Griffith, and currently, the Sunnydale and Potrero Hill housing projects.
In 2013, Henderson began working for the Oakland Housing Authority. At the Oakland Housing Authority, she serves as the Chief Social Impact Officer, overseeing the Oakland Section 8 voucher program, policy planning, and government relations.
“I make sure that all of the Oakland Authority programs are delivered effectively to our residents,” said Henderson.
Henderson has been involved with the Bay View Citizens Advisory Committee for several years. Due to the nomination, she will step down from the committee to serve on the SFMTA board.
“I am grateful to Mayor Breed for the nomination and excited for the opportunity to serve my community as a member of the SFMTA Board of Directors,” continued Henderson. “As a lifelong San Franciscan, I look forward to bringing a balanced and authentic perspective, as well as a lived experience, to such an impactful agency at this critical time in the city’s journey.”