President’s Message – May

Georgia Planners,

What an honor and privilege it was to attend the National Planning Conference in Minneapolis representing our Chapter along with nearly 4,000 other planners from around the country and world. As Chapter President, I was invited to leadership and chapter development training sessions. It was so interesting to hear what others are doing around the U.S. as well as share information about our Chapter. One of the topics for discussion was how all of the Chapters and Divisions work together as a whole to make up the American Planning Association.

Some takeaways from the National Planning Conference and Leadership Training:

  • How come no one understands what I do as a planner? From a Speed Share presentation on Climate Action and Transportation, David Fields, FAICP pointed out we have made planning confusing and inaccessible through our use of complicated language and terminology. This reminds me to use everyday language to communicate why we are planning and who we are planning for.
  • Why do people behave the way we do? From Leadership Training provided by Glenn Tecker, Tecker International, Behavior, no matter how crazy, has a logical basis. What a good reminder to all of us as we sort through public input, opinions, and opposition to ideas and projects in our everyday work.
  • What are the trends we need to Act on Now, Prepare For, or Learn About and Watch? I am not the subject matter expert, but thankfully, the APA Foresight Team has published the 2024 Trend Report for Planners. You and I can become better planners if we take a few moments to think about where we’ve been and where we are headed.
  • How are we going to address the housing crisis in the US and particularly Georgia? I know it will take a lot of hands and programs, and APA is working with the National League of Cities to launch the Housing Supply Accelerator.

I do hope that all of you have the opportunity to attend a National Planning Conference in your future. It was great to catch up with those from Georgia who were able to attend in person in April. (Note that the online conference is May 8-10, 2024, and you can still register. The National Planning Conference heads to Denver in 2025 and Detroit in 2026. 

As always, I invite you to become more active in GPA or APA. The nominations portal has opened.

If you have any comments, questions, or topics you’d like to learn more about, reach out to me.

Best regards,