American Planning Association

North Carolina Chapter

Message from our President

Kenneth Bowers, AICP

Chapter President

President’s Message for April 2018

The planning community in North Carolina and beyond lost a great teacher, mentor, and friend with David Godschalk passed away on January 27 of this year. Like many planners across the state, I was a student of Professor Godschalk’s. Although my studies concentrated in economic development rather than land use, I wanted a well-rounded planning education, so I signed up for his Site Planning and legendary Dispute Resolution classes. Little did I know as a naive graduate student how useful that latter class would prove to be in the real world. I was later privileged to work with Prof. Godschalk as part of APA’s Sustaining Places Task Force, where I continued to learn from him. He is greatly missed. If you haven’t seen it, a remembrance is on the APA-NC blog.

I’m excited about the upcoming National Planning Conference in New Orleans, now just three weeks away, and look forward to seeing many of you there. I’m expecting warm weather, tasty food, swinging music, and of course some great planning content at all the plenaries, sessions, and mobile workshops. Post-Katrina New Orleans has some of the most compelling and timely planning stories to tell of any city in America. Alongside Houston and Miami, it is probably the large city most impacted by climate change. Katrina displaced many long-time residents and set the stage for an influx of newcomers. As a result, New Orleans is also struggling with the social and economic equity issues that are manifesting themselves in cities around the nation. I’ll be interested in learning how the City is using planning to cope with and thrive in the face of these environmental, economic, and social challenges.

If you are in New Orleans, be sure to stop by the Southeast Chapters and Universities Reception. This year’s event will be held at Mulate’s at 201 Julia Street from 6 to 8 PM on Monday, March 23. The reception is a great time to reconnect with colleagues from around the Southeast, and I look forward to seeing you there.

Applications for APA-NC’s 2018 Summer Fellowship Program are due this Friday, April 6. The APA-NC Fellowship Program was created to increase diversity in the planning profession by fostering increased interest among minority students and women in the field of urban planning. Towards this goal, APA-NC is offering a $2,000 Summer Fellowship for women and minority students pursuing graduate or undergraduate planning degrees or planning related degrees. The fellowship period is from June 1 to August 30. I urge all eligible students to apply.

Lastly, our Chapter is currently organizing itself to effectively implement the Four Year Plan of Chapter Work and Development, our new strategic planning document. The plan calls for the creation of two new committees, one for Resiliency and one for Affordable Housing. We are currently organizing the Affordable Housing committee and are actively looking for members to work on this vital topic of statewide importance. If you are interested in serving, please email me or Leigh Anne King directly to let me know of your interest.

Thanks, and I will be back with updates this summer.