City Council

City Council


City of Grass Valley Nevada Co. Calif.

Grass Valley City Council encourages community engagement and invites the expression of views and opinions of citizens on any matter of community interest that is within the Council’s authority. Grass Valley City Council meetings are held on the second and fourth Tuesday of every month at 7 p.m.

Grass Valley City Council consists of five members. Council members are alternately elected at large in November of even-numbered years, at the general election, to serve a four-year term. Grass Valley council members do not have term limits. The Mayor and Vice Mayor are appointed by the City Council each November. 


Ben Aguilar


Benjamin Aguilar was appointed to the City Council March 10th 2015.  His current city appointments are the Solid and Hazardous Waste Commission and the Parks and Recreation Commission. 

Ben, was born and raised in Grass Valley, has served 4 years on the Grass Valley Planning Commission, serving as the Chair in 2013.  Ben is currently enrolled in the Nevada County Community Leadership Institute. 


Jan Arbuckle

Vice Mayor

Jan relocated to Sacramento in the 1970s. She served Sacramento County as a Deputy Sheriff for almost two-decades. Relocating to Grass Valley in 2003, she continued her public service through two consecutive terms on the Nevada County Civil Grand Jury. In February 2007, Jan was appointed to the Grass Valley City Council. Elected in November 2008 to a four-year term, the Council selected her as vice mayor, then as mayor in 2010, a position she held until 2012.  She is currently in her fourth elected term.


Hilary Hodge

Council Member

Hilary Hodge is a sixth-generation Northern Californian.  Her rural roots go back to the 1850s, when her family moved out west to begin homesteading in the newly established Golden State.  Hilary graduated from University of California at Davis with a degree in English Literature and a minor focusing on Colonial American History.  Hilary spent ten years in California’s State Capital before moving to Nevada County.


Bob Branstrom

Council Member

Bob Branstrom first visited Grass Valley in about 1975 and moved here in 2013, after retiring. He had a varied career in state government, banking, and healthcare. He is a social scientist with graduate degrees in economics and cognitive psychology. He became progressively more involved in community activities and was elected to the City Council in 2020.

Council Member Branstrom’s term ends in December 2024


Tom Ivy

Council Member

Tom Ivy was born and raised in Nevada County. He graduated from Nevada Union High School, then attended UC Santa Cruz where he earned a degree in Environmental Studies with a focus in Agriculture. In 2008, Tom moved back home and started working in his family’s plumbing business, which he continues to this day. Tom’s hobbies include gardening and mountain biking.

He was appointed to the Grass Valley Planning Commission in 2018 and elected to City Council in 2020.

Council Member Ivy’s term ends in December 2024