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Protocol Guidelines

Guidelines for Requests for Diplomatic Courtesy Visits with Mayor Faulconer

Thank you for your interest in arranging for a visit with Mayor Kenin Faulconer. We are pleased to share with you some guidelines for these requests, and look forward to working with you.

Please request your visit in writing. Requests should be sent to:

Office of Protocol
The City of San Diego
Office of Mayor Kevin Faulconer
202 C Street, 11th floor
San Diego, California 92101

You may also fax or email your request to Don Giaquinto.

Don Giaquinto
Director of Protocol
Phone: (619) 236-6330
Fax: (619) 236-7228
Email: protocol@sandiego.gov

Please include in your request as much of the following information as possible:

  • Who would like to visit Mayor Faulconer - titles and number of people
  • Biographies, curriculum vitae, or resumes of dignitary(ies)
  • When you would like to schedule the visit
  • Background of the visit of the dignitary(ies) to San Diego-reason for the trip, how long he/she/they will be in town
  • Any gifts or tokens that will be given
  • Whether there will be any special needs we will need to be aware of in order to accommodate the visitor(s)-disabilities, etc
  • Whether the visitor(s) speaks English, or, if not, whether interpreters will be accompanying the visitor(s)
  • Will there be a photographer accompanying the visitor(s), or, if not, is a photographer requested
  • Will press be a part of the visit? Which newspapers, TV, radio press are expected, how many, and have arrangements been made to work with them directly? Will the Mayor's Office Press Secretary need to or be expected to participate?

Please request the visit as far in advance as possible, but at least two weeks ahead of time. We will consider all requests, but we do ask your understanding that Mayor Faulconer's' very busy schedule may make it impossible to arrange for last-minute visit requests.

If we are able to accommodate your visit request, we will contact you directly as soon as possible. If a scheduling change is necessary, we will contact you as soon as we are aware of the change. If changes need to be made on your part, please contact us at your earliest opportunity so that we can make the appropriate changes to the Mayor's schedule.

If you will need parking instructions for you vehicle or motorcade, please let us know well in advance so that we may work with the appropriate departments to accommodate you.

At the time of the visit, we ask that you arrive at least ten minutes early. Please identify any security accompanying you on your visit; we may introduce them to the Mayor's Security Detail prior to entering the Mayor's Office or Conference Room. Due to the Mayor's very tight schedule, we will need to adhere to the time allotted. Again, thank you in advance for you consideration.

Following the visit, if any follow-up is necessary, please correspond with our office directly. If photos were taken and you wish to have copies, please make sure we have a current contact person and address to which to send them.

If the Mayor is Unavailable

In many circumstances, if the Mayor is not available to receive your VIP/dignitary guests, the Office of Protocol would be very pleased to accommodate them ourselves. We often represent Mayor Faulconer on those occasions; we consider this a vital part of our Protocol responsibilities and are privileged to have the opportunity to meet dignitaries visiting our City.

Keys to the City

Keys to the City are only presented by the Mayor to:

The "Key to the City" is bestowed upon distinguished persons and honored guests of the City of San Diego. The practice of presenting a key to an individual may be traced back to medieval times, when admission into a city was hampered by many legal restrictions, as well as by walls and locked gates.

The key symbolized free entry. In San Diego, the act of giving the Key of the City is symbolic. The presentation honors outstanding civic contributions by the recipients. This includes high ranking elected officials and celebrities.

In most cities in the United States, an ornamental key - the "Key to the City" - is presented to esteemed visitors, residents, or others whom the city wishes to honour.

San Diego honors esteemed persons with the "Freedom of the City," the custom of granting to distinguished residents or visitors the "privileges connected with mutual citizenship."

The presentation of the "Key to the City" is considered the highest form of municipal honor.

This practice is a variation on the Freedom of the City tradition, and has a similar symbolic meaning; evoking medieval walled cities, the gates of which would be guarded during the day and locked at night, the key symbolises the freedom of the recipient to enter and leave the city at will, as a trusted friend of city residents

  • Members of Royalty
  • Chiefs of State
  • Heads of Government
  • Ambassadors of Foreign Nations
  • Governors of non-U.S. States
  • Mayors of non-U.S. Cities

Order of Precedence

View list of Order of Precedence.