Fire Memorial Public Art Project

Fire Memorial graphic bar

In June 2022, the Sonoma County Board of Supervisors approved a plan to create and install a commemorative artwork recognizing the lives of those who perished in the 2017 wildfire complex. Creative Sonoma, a division of the Economic Development Board, will facilitate the project on the County’s behalf.

This page includes the following:

  • Latest Project News
  • Fire Memorial Requests for Proposals or Qualification
  • Fire Memorial Work Plan
  • Fire Memorial Task Force 

Latest Project News

Photograph of Karin Demarest

Project Manager Selected

Karin Demarest has been selected as the Fire Memorial Project Manager. Before the launch of her company, the Demarest Strategy Group, she served as the Vice President for Community Impact at the Community Foundation Sonoma County for 11 years. In addition to her deep commitment to fostering equitable, resilient communities through alliance building and authentic engagement, Karin is a performing artist, cyclist, and local moderator. 

Fire Memorial Email List Sign Up Form

If you are interested in any opportunities to participate in the Fire Memorial project - from community meetings or surveys, to artist opportunities and more - please fill out this brief interest form. Emails will only be sent as opportunities arise. The bi-lingual English and Spanish form is available HERE.

SPECIAL NOTE: While this project does have the involvement of family members who lost loved ones in the fires, we want to ensure that as many families that want to be involved or kept up to date on this memorial are included. We encourage those folks to fill out this contact form or to email us at And if you know a family member who should be kept apprised that may not know about this project, please share this information with them. Thank you.

Fire Memorial RFPs and RFQs

As opportunities arise related to the Fire Memorial, they will be listed here. 

Fire Memorial Work Plan

An approved Work Plan will provide guidance to all involved with the project. It describes the entities that are involved in the process, what their roles will be, how decisions will be made, and a budget and timeline. Some aspects of the project may be determined later in the process, at which point this Work Plan will be updated.

  • Read the Sonoma County Fire Memorial Public Art Work Plan (October 2022 version) HERE.


The goals for the Memorial will be finalized through a process that will be led by Creative Sonoma and will include input from a Memorial Task Force.  Preliminary goals for the memorial include:

  • Create a place for acknowledgement, remembrance, gathering, and reflection
  • Create opportunities for community healing that acknowledge the community’s individual and collective grief and sense of loss
  • Recognize that people have experienced and are processing grief and trauma in individual ways, and accommodate those differing paths as much as possible


The process will be designed with significant flexibility for artists to conceptualize many types of memorial artworks, based on feedback gathered through community engagement activities. Proposed memorial artworks might include physical sculptures, gardens, mosaics, story collections and kiosks, and other process-oriented works.

Finally, because the threat of wildfire continues in Sonoma County, it should be noted that this memorial project is not intended to be a “capstone” on the impact of fires in our community.

Fire Memorial Task Force

The Memorial Task Force will:

  • finalize the work plan, including project goals and themes;
  • ensure that appropriate artists are invited to participate in the RFQ/RFP process;
  • support and participate in community engagement processes designed by the Task Force, staff and artist;
  • selecting finalists and a subsequent artist or artist team to receive the commission;
  • support the development of the project concept including reviewing design development as appropriate; 
  • advocate for the project as it is being developed and when it is completed.


Memorial Task Force Selection Process

Creative Sonoma solicited recommendations and self-nominations of individuals to serve on the Memorial Task Force from February – June 2023. Creative Sonoma established a small ad hoc committee, including representatives from Districts 1, 3 and 4, and the Creative Sonoma Advisory Board, to review the pool of applications and recommend who the Memorial Task Force members should be. As part of the review process, Creative Sonoma interviewed potential Memorial Task Force members as needed. The recommendations for the Memorial Task Force will be presented to the Board of Supervisors in July 2023 for its consideration and approval.


Memorial Task Force Composition

The Memorial Task Force of approximately 7 members will consist of a broad cross-section of stakeholders, including representatives of families who lost loved ones in the fires, first responders, artists, and arts workers.


For further questions about the Fire Memorial Public Art Project, please email or call 707-565-6121.