Meet Volunteer Sean Kehoe
A Q&A with the chair of the Board of Adjustment
Hillsborough resident Sean Kehoe picked up his life and moved to the town in 2005. Within a week of visiting with friends, his friends had convinced him to leave his Midwestern residence and move to Hillsborough.
Since then, he’s moved several times within and outside of town. Moving throughout town, Kehoe decided he wanted to get involved. Four years ago, he saw a call for volunteers on Facebook and jumped at the opportunity. Kehoe filled out an application and was appointed to the Board of Adjustment, starting as the out-of-town alternate and now serving as the board’s chair.
Check out our Q&A with him.
What made you get involved in this volunteer work?
I had been in the town for a while, and I wanted to be involved and get the feeling of validation from helping. I didn’t realize how open the opportunities to volunteer for town boards are, and I was excited to be a part of the process.
Was there any specific experience you had that made you think you could be an asset to a particular board?
Absolutely not, but I prefer to live my life by the phrase “why not?” I feel underqualified, but I am constantly told that I am not. I believe that all are welcome on volunteer boards.
What do you find rewarding about the work?
I feel validation from contributing to my community. I also like being on the inside and seeing how the sausage gets made.
What has the time commitment been typically in a month?
At least for the Board of Adjustment, it is not very time-consuming. When there is a case in front of the board, you are given all the materials you may need, and it doesn’t take long to familiarize yourself with the case and make judgment. I have spent 15 hours a week at most, but that is not frequent.
Do you feel like you have made a difference to the community through this work and how?
I see my impact around the community. For example, Aldi would not be building without Board of Adjustment approval, since they needed some adjustments to their approved plan to be built.
What do you like best about volunteering for the town?
The thing I like best is knowing that, as community member who was invested emotionally, I am getting to help.
Do you have anything else you would like to say?
Whether you agree or disagree with any of the decisions of the town, you can only change things if you show up. Want the town to do less things? Show up. Want the town to do more things? Show up.
Consider offering your time and expertise by serving on a Hillsborough appointed board. Some boards require town residency. Others reserve seats for residents of the town’s extraterritorial jurisdiction or do not have a residency requirement. Learn more about vacant seats and apply.
The following boards have vacancies:
- Board of Adjustment
- Planning Board
- Water and Sewer Advisory Committee