In a historical feat, Clerk Fowler was elected South Bend’s 22nd City Clerk in 2015 making her the first minority in St. Joseph County to seat a full-time executive office. City Clerk Kareemah Fowler is responsible for a myriad of activities, but is primarily responsible for supporting the City’s goal of open and transparent government.
Clerk Fowler earned her Bachelor’s (B.A.Sc.) degree in Business Administration with a minor in Public Service from Bethel College. An experienced public servant with over 15 years of experience in municipal government; Clerk Fowler has served in management positions both in the Office of the Clerk and the St. Joseph County Assessor’s Office. During her ten (10) year tenure in the Assessor’s Compliance Office, she worked directly with the Department of Local Government Finance (DLGF) and was instrumental in managing over $8,000,000,000 in assessment data. Clerk Fowler also spearheaded Indiana Sales Disclosure reform for St. Joseph County. She was also influential in creating a more streamlined process for local government through the consolidation of the township structure from thirteen (13) local assessment offices to two (2) offices. Clerk Fowler is a Level II Assessor-Appraiser, and certified member of both the International Institute of Municipal Clerk-Treasurers and the Municipal League of Clerks and Treasurers.
City Clerk Kareemah Fowler is also a recent nominee to the prestigious Emerging Leaders Project, an Indiana Election delegate and a graduate of the Michiana Chamber of Commerce’s Leadership Program Class XLI. Clerk Fowler most fervently enjoys bridging the gap between people and local government and being a parent to two very active children.
Responsibilities of the City Clerk
The City Clerk is the Clerk of the South Bend Common Council. The Clerk is elected by the voters of the entire City. The City Clerk's official functions are set forth in Chapter Thirty-Six (36) of the Indiana Code.
The City Clerk, and as many staff members as he or she determines necessary, provides City Council staff support, attends all regular and special meetings of the Council; and is required to keep an accurate journal of all such proceedings.
In addition to it's overall mission of maintaining the official records of the City, the Office of the City Clerk also performs the following:
- Required to maintain the City Seal and administer City oaths.
- Maintains custody, control filings and storage of all legislation papers, minutes and other written and recorded documents pertaining to the operation of City government.
- Oversees the entire legislative process, from the introduction to final approval and publication.
- Prepares agendas and legal notices for all Council meetings.
- Document compliance of Tax Abatements, CF1s, Annexations, Alley Vacations, and City required reporting per the Municipal Code
- Schedules official City Council meetings and public hearings.
- Acts as a liaison with City Department Heads, Outside agencies, Other branches of government, and the general public on behalf of the City Council and works closely with the Council to supply combined constituent services.
- Responsible for the publication, updating and distribution of the South Bend Code of Ordinances.
- Responsible for following through all requests of Council information and/or reports from various City Departments.
- Works in cooperation with the Office of the Mayor for live broadcasting through WNIT of City Council meetings.
- Processing of City Boards and Commissions.
- Responsible for all functions of the City Ordinance Violations Bureau.
- Issuance of Conditional Use Lawn Parking Permits (ND Lawn Parking) and Scrap Metal Licenses.
- Administers City of South Bend Amnesty Program.
- Has available upon request for public reference and distribution the following documents: Copies of all transcripts, legislation, certificates, meeting notices, Council minutes, and any other matters of public information.
For all groups and presenters who wish to be recognized at the Common Council Meetings please check in with the City Clerk's Office beforehand.
For all Council documents please click here.
The City Clerk's Office does not record or store the following:
Birth Records and Death Records:
For information regarding how to obtain these records, contact the St. Joseph County Health Department, Vital Records at 574.245.6719
Marriage Records and Court Records:
For information regarding how to obtain these records, contact the St. Joseph County Clerk's Office at 574.235.9635