Join the Washington Developmental Disabilities Council.

The DDC generally adds new members on an annual basis and we are always accepting applications. Read below for more information about serving as a Council member.

FAQs About Council Participation

Now Seeking Council Members from Washington State. Come join us!

Do you have a commitment to serving others? If you enjoy learning, building relationships, and advocating for change in systems, joining the DDC can offer you a rewarding path.

Clicking on the "Apply to Serve" button below will take you to the Governor's website to complete your application. The application will ask for your contact information, work history and experience, personal references from friends, family or previous employers, and a statement about why you want to join the council. We recommend writing out your answers in a separate document first.

If you have any questions or need help completing your application, please contact Linda West, by email:, or by phone at 360-586-3572.

Apply to Serve

Frequently Asked Questions About Council Participation

Who appoints Council members? 

The Governor appoints members to serve three-year terms. Council members can reapply to serve a second three-year term if they choose.

Who can apply? 

Public members who serve on the Council must be:

  • A person with a developmental disability or
  • An immediate family member, parent, or guardian of a person with a developmental disability.
What is the federal definition of a developmental disability? 

The federal law defines a developmental disability as one that:

  • Is attributable to a mental or physical impairment or combination of mental and physical impairments; 
  • Is manifested before the individual attains age 22; 
  • Is likely to continue indefinitely; 
  • Results in substantial functional limitations in three (3) or more of the following areas of major life activity: self-care; receptive and expressive language; learning; mobility; self-direction; capacity for independent living; economic self-sufficiency; and
  • Reflects the need for a combination and sequence of special, interdisciplinary, or generic services, individualized supports, or other forms of assistance that are of lifelong or extended duration and are individually planned and coordinated.
Who serves on the Council?

There are 27 members who serve on the Council. At least 60% of them are required to be people with developmental disabilities and family members of people with developmental disabilities. The rest of them are agency and organization representatives, as required by the DD Act.

How often does the Council meet? 

The Council typically meets quarterly for 2-day meetings in January, April, July, and October. There are committee and other Council-related meetings that happen in between the quarterly meetings.

Does the Council pay for my travel and meals?

The Council pays for travel, lodging, meals, and other expenses related to Council meetings.

How long do members serve?

Council members serve three-year terms and may apply to serve a second term. Some Council members are appointed to fill partial terms if another member leaves before the end of their term.

What do Council members do? 

One of the most important jobs of Council members is to create a 5-Year State Plan that will guide the work of the Council. Once it is created, Council members monitor progress on the plan to make sure it stays on track, and make changes if needed. Council members also share information about the Council’s work with their communities, and share the needs and priorities of their communities back to the Council.

What happens after I apply?

If you meet the membership qualifications, you will be contacted to schedule an interview. After your interview, the Governor will make appointments to the Council. If you are not appointed, your application will be kept for one year so you can apply again for a future position. 

Ready to Apply?

Follow the link below to access the application on the Governor's website. If you have any questions or need support completing your application, please contact or (360) 586-3572.

Apply Now