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Event lineup here!
Full hardcopy program will be available in person at the event!



Abra Nusser, AICP, Peloton Land Solutions

Abra Nusser, AICP has over 18 years of experience in government and law-related fields, and over 13 years of experience in city planning. Her planning experience covers multiple facets including, but not limited to: parks and recreation master planning, downtown planning, development review, neighborhood planning, corridor/mobility planning, small area/sector planning, comprehensive planning, historic preservation, grant writing, and community engagement. Abra holds a Master’s Degree in Public Affairs (MPA) and Graduate Certificates in City Planning and Local Government Management from The University of Texas at Dallas. She also holds a Bachelor’s Degree in Political Science from Texas State University. She is a member of the American Planning Association and has served in various American Planning Association leadership positions at the local and state levels.  She is currently Past Director of the Midwest Texas Section of the American Planning Association.

Dr. Andreea Udrea, AICP, City of Dallas

Andreea Udrea, PhD, AICP is one of the Assistant Directors of Planning and Urban Design of the City of Dallas and is enthusiastically working for the current planning team doing zoning change review and all things associated with development code amendments. City of Dallas is currently undergoing major planning and development code reforms, doubled by an active and dynamic development that continuously challenges the current Dallas Development Code. Andreea has been working for the City of Dallas for the past four years. Andreea is also a European planner, moved to US ten years ago from Bucharest, Romania, where she led the Planning Agency for City of Bucharest and was an assistant professor with the “Ion Mincu” University of Architecture and Planning in Bucharest. Andreea learned how to drive and got her driving license upon moving to US, hence she still retains all pedestrian-only instincts when planning and coding cities. Before her tenure with the City of Dallas, Andreea worked with the City of Famers Branch for almost 4 years.

Brad Ruthrauff, Flower Mound P&Z

Brian Haynes, P.E., Peloton Land Solutions

Brain Haynes is Vice President of Public Sector Services for Peloton Land Solutions with more than 23-years of experience in design and management of public infrastructure projects. He has served as the city engineer for Copper Canyon, Double Oak, Lake Dallas, and Hickory Creek, and provides staff augmentation services for the Cities of Grand Prairie and The Colony. His experience includes master thoroughfare planning, road design, redesign, construction, and reconstruction, comprehensive planning, downtown master planning, parks and trail planning and design, code and design amendments, development review, capital improvement project planning and implementation, and more.  Some notable projects include the Downtown Reconstruction in Roanoke, TX and the $55 Million Solana Business Park Redevelopment in Westlake, TX. He is a graduate of Texas Tech University with a Bachelor of Science in Civil Engineering.

Christie Gotti, NCTCOG

Christie J. Gotti joined the North Central Texas Council of Governments (NCTCOG), the Metropolitan Planning Organization (MPO) for the Dallas-Fort Worth area, as a transportation planner in October 2000.  She is currently the Senior Program Manager for Transportation Project Programming.  Christie received her bachelor’s degree in Geography from the University of Texas at Austin and her Master’s Degree in Public Administration from the University of Texas at Arlington.  Christie manages the Transportation Improvement Program and project funding/programming efforts for the Dallas-Fort Worth region.  In this capacity, she works with NCTCOG staff, local governments, the Texas Department of Transportation, and other transportation agencies to select, fund, and implement transportation projects in the Dallas-Fort Worth area. She is a member of the Women's Transportation Seminar and has volunteered or served on the board of directors or in a leadership capacity for WTS locally since 2005.  Outside of work, her interests include traveling, scrapbooking, reading, and visiting friends and family.   She is married with two young children.

Drew Myers, DrewMyers.Life

Drew Myers is an enlivener and a story seeker. He gives others the opportunity to share their story - with the hopes that they also embrace their story.  Through his podcasts and speaking engagements, he showcases and celebrates individuals who have given themselves permission to live radically honest lives, pursue their dreams and live on purpose. As a speaker, Drew reiterates how important our stories are – the past, present and the future ... the good, the bad and the ugly. He reminds his audiences that life is short and inspires them to start making the important things important.  Drew Myers has a bachelor’s degree in Mass Communications with an emphasis in Journalism and a master’s degree in Educational Administration. He is a meraki speaker and intentionality coach, who emphasizes mental resilience. He embraces the amazing power of story and celebrates individuals who have given themselves permission to live radically honest lives, pursue their dreams and live on purpose. In September of 2021, his debut book – The Tacos and Chocolate Diet – was released.

Erica Marohnic, AICP, City of Grapevine

Erica has 18 years of planning expertise and has been the Planning Services Director with the City of Grapevine since September 2021. Prior to her leadership position in Grapevine, Erica was the Development Project Facilitation Manager for the City of Denton’s Development Services Department, leading a team responsible for coordinating the application and multidisciplinary review process for development applications and ensuring compliance with local, state, and federal legal and regulatory requirements. Prior to her work in Denton, Erica worked for the City of Plano as a Lead Planner and was responsible for the delivery of special projects such as ordinance rewrites and case management of large-scale developments including Legacy West and Rosewood/Heritage Creekside.

Jennifer Deaton, Oncor 

Jennifer Deaton is the Manager of Corporate Strategy and Electrification at Oncor Electric Delivery. Jennifer is focused on understanding how fleets transitioning to electric vehicles will impact the infrastructure that Oncor maintains. Jennifer is also working to educate customers on why it’s important to talk to your utility early and often when starting an electrification journey.

Josh Peterman, P.E., RSP1, Fehr & Peers

Josh Peterman, PE, RSP1 is a Principal and Dallas Office Leader at Fehr & Peers.  For over 20 years he has involved himself with the planning and design of multimodal transportation infrastructure, working to integrate it with the context of the local environment.  He manages a variety of work at Fehr & Peers, from layered network planning to traffic signal design.  His technical research lives within Fehr & Peers’ Multimodal Safety and Smart City groups.   Josh is a graduate of the University of Texas at Austin, and the University of California at Davis – so he is both a Longhorn AND an Aggie.  He lives in Plano with his three cats, one dog, one wife, and two daughters. 

Kristin Green, P.E., Lewisville City Council

City of Lewisville Councilwoman Kristin Green is a Licensed Professional Engineer with a Bachelor's in Science from Texas A&M University.  She is currently the Director at Nack Construction. Prior to that she was president at Placemaker Design, Inc, and Verdunity.  She has been recognized as a top 25 Women in Business in Collin County, ASCE Young Engineer of the year, and ENR Top 40 under 40.  She served on the Planning and Zoning Commission for 6 years, including 2 years as Chair, before being elected to City Council in 2019.  She is passionate about Old Town Lewisville, where she resides with her husband and son.  

Dr. Lauren Ames Fischer, UNT, Denton ZBA

Lauren Ames Fischer, Ph.D. is an assistant professor of urban planning and associate director of the Advanced Environmental Research Institute at the University of North Texas. Her research investigates how local land use and transport policies affect environmental sustainability, health and spatial equity in American cities. Since 2020, Dr. Fischer has been leading a community-based, interdisciplinary project with the city of Lewisville, Texas to integrate spatial equity and health into the city’s Healthy Infrastructure Park Plan, and to enhance park accessibility in underserved neighborhoods.  

Dr. Melissa Oden, PLAN4Health

Melissa Oden is a Fort Worth, Texas native who earned a bachelor’s degree in Social Science from Texas Wesleyan University in 1997.  She went on to earn a master’s degree in Social Work from the University of Texas at Arlington in 2001, a Master of Public Health in 2006 from the University of North Texas Health Science Center School of Public Health, and a Doctor of Health Education (2011) from Andrew Taylor Still University School of Health Management. Dr. Oden has been practicing social work for 21 years and a public health practitioner for 16 years. Her work experience ranges from social work in hospital and long-term care settings, to teaching and public health education and community practice, to professional development training and project management for applied social research projects.  Her current fieldwork focuses on and Emergency Management and Disaster Planning and developing cross-disciplinary collaborations between urban planners and public health professionals. She is currently founding CEO of Health Education Resources Network, a public health project management and health education consulting company.  Dr. Oden currently lives in Fort Worth with her 4-year-old orange tabby, Oliver. 

Pharr Andrews, PMP, City of Dallas

Pharr Andrews currently serves as the Senior Climate Coordinator for the City of Dallas, where her primary function is to coordinate the development and implementation of the City’s first Comprehensive and Climate Action Plan (CECAP). Previous work experience includes Environmental Outreach Manager for the City of Richardson and Air Quality Manager for the City of Austin. She has over 20 years of experience working on a variety of environmental and sustainability issues with a demonstrated record of success in project management, climate planning, state and local policy/rulemaking projects, communication of complex information, and management of climate protection air quality, pollution prevention, water conservation, and land development programs. Her experience paired with a strong commitment to preserving our natural environment has earned her a reputation as an eco-champion.   While in Austin, she chaired the region’s Clean Air Coalition Advisory Committee, and helped develop and implement three regional air quality improvement plans.  She was also a founding member of the City’s Climate Protection Team and played a vital role in the climate planning effort.  Prior to serving at the City of Austin she worked for the Texas commission on Environmental Quality (TCEQ) on environmental policy issues. 

Sara Copeland, FAICP, Burns & McDonnell 

Sara Copeland, FAICP is a Senior Planner at Burns & McDonnell. She was previously the first Community Development Director for the City of North Kansas City, MO where she managed long-range planning and redevelopment. Her professional focus on plan implementation has resulted in the 2020 Outstanding Plan Implementation award from APA Missouri, a 2018 Missouri Municipal League Innovation Award, and the Kansas City Metro's 2018 Bike/Ped Project of the Year. She earned Bachelor of Science and Master in City Planning degrees from the Massachusetts Institute of Technology. Sara served as the Chair of the American Planning Association's Chapter Presidents Council and a member of the APA Board of Directors in 2020-2021.

Vivian Fung, AICP, The Olsson Studio

Vivian is a Community Planner with the Olsson Studio. She has worked in both the public and private sector on long-range planning projects including regional public transportation planning, comprehensive planning, and downtown planning projects in Dallas-Fort Worth and throughout the United States. She is a public engagement specialist, an urbanist, and an advocate of human-scale planning and design. Vivian received her master’s degree in City and Regional Planning from the University of Texas at Arlington and her Bachelor of Science in Sociology with a minor in Leadership from Stephen F. Austin State University.

Alan Lathrom, JD, Brown & Hofmeister

Alan Lathrom is a partner in the law firm of Brown & Hofmeister, L.L.P., which law firm serves as the City Attorney for a number of cities in the North Texas Area and provides various other legal services to numerous communities in Texas. Alan’s practice focuses on the day-to-day representation of municipalities with an emphasis in advising elected and appointed officials, and working with City Staff on ordinances, open meetings, code enforcement, competitive bidding, government contracts, and land use including annexation, impact fees, rough proportionality, signs, takings, eminent domain, platting, and municipal zoning.  Alan joined Brown & Hofmeister in 2004 after serving almost seven years as an Assistant City Attorney for the City of Arlington as a contracts attorney, land use attorney, and trial attorney. Prior to joining the Arlington City Attorney’s office, Alan worked in the private sector as a trial attorney in the state and federal courts handling a broad variety of cases ranging from insurance coverage cases to insurance defense work to contract cases to environmental and toxic tort litigation. Alan received his Bachelor of Arts degree in Theatre at the University of Texas at Dallas in 1985 and his law degree in 1989 from Southern Methodist University. 

Ann Bagley, FAICP, Consultant

Ann Bagley, FAICP, has worked with small to medium size cities on long range plans, area plans, zoning ordinances, subdivision regulations, and park plans for over 35 years.  She is a Fellow of the American Institute of Certified Planners. Ann holds degrees in City and Regional Planning from the University of Louisiana, Lafayette.  As a planner she worked in Sugar land and Houston, Texas.  As a consultant she guided comprehensive plans and ordinances for cities in Texas, New Mexico, and Arkansas.  On behalf of the American Planning Association and APA Texas, she has made numerous presentations on ethics, zoning, and other aspects of planning to planners, planning commissioners, and elected officials at local, regional, state, and national workshops and conferences.
For ten years, Ann served on the Dallas City Plan Commissioner for District 7.  Sh

 Carrie F. Gordon, Mayor of Balch Springs

Brian Moen, P.E., City of Frisco

Brian Moen, P.E., is the Assistant Director of Engineering/Transportation with the City of Frisco.  He graduated with a Bachelor’s and Master’s degree in Civil Engineering from the University of Nebraska.  Brian has 29 years of experience, including the past 21 years with the City of Frisco.  His experience includes work in traffic safety and operations, connected and automated vehicles, and roundabouts.  Brian has also helped to implement several hundred million dollars of transportation related capital improvements as Frisco has grown from 34,000 to over 220,000 residents during his tenure. Brian also represents Texas Cities and Counties on the Texas Governor’s Connected and Automated Vehicle Task Force.  Lastly, Brian has been married 33 years and has three children, seven grandchildren, and his family has lived in Frisco since 1996.

Craig Farmer, FAICP, Municipal Planning Services

Craig Farmer, FAICP is president of Municipal Planning Services, LLC consulting with numerous cities, counties, councils of governments and metropolitan planning organizations in Texas.  Previously, he managed planning, public works, engineering, storm water, building inspection and transportation departments in the cities of Lubbock, Carrollton, Grand Prairie, McAllen and Weatherford. He is a Fellow in the College of the American Institute of Certified Planners, served on the National Board of Directors of the American Planning Association (APA) and the Board of Directors of the Texas Municipal League. Eighteen of his projects won Texas Planning awards including comprehensive plans, downtown plans, zoning and subdivision ordinances, and redevelopment projects.  Economic development experience includes nine Tax Increment Reinvestment Zones, eight Public Improvement Districts, and significant involvement in Lone Star Horse Racing Park and the Texas Trust CU (former Verizon) Performing Arts Theatre in Grand Prairie and the $500+ million Overton redevelopment project adjacent to Texas Tech University.  In 2019, APATX named him a “Legend in Texas Planning.”  Craig holds a Bachelor-of-Business Administration from The University of Texas and a Master-of-Urban and Regional Planning from Texas A&M University.

Gincy Thoppil, AICP, CPM, City of Arlington

Gincy Thoppil, the Planning and Development Services Director for the City of Arlington, has over 20 years of experience in comprehensive planning, land development and engineering, building permitting and inspections.  She has successfully led public engagement efforts to reach consensus on community-wide planning issues, adoption of urban design codes, and development-focused process improvements.  She also serves in the Executive Committee for American Planning Association’s Housing and Community Development Division. She holds a master's degree in Community Planning with Urban Design specialization from the University of Cincinnati, and a bachelor's degree in Architecture from the University of Mumbai, India. 

Jeff Neal, NCTCOG 

Jeffrey C. Neal is a Senior Program Manager with the Streamlined Project Delivery Team for the North Central Texas Council of Governments (NCTCOG), the Metropolitan Planning Organization (MPO) for the 12-county Dallas-Fort Worth Metropolitan Area. Mr. Neal has been employed with NCTCOG since 1999, gaining extensive transportation planning experience through work with multiple teams and disciplines. Mr. Neal has led the Streamlined Project Delivery Team since 2018 in efforts to integrate and optimize environmental data/analysis resources, enhance stakeholder collaboration and equitable mitigation initiatives, expand asset management and resilience capabilities, coordinate technical assistance and advanced programming for USDOT competitive grant proposals, and expedite multimodal project implementation on behalf of numerous local governments and regional transportation providers.  Mr. Neal holds a Bachelor of Science Degree (Geography) and Master of Science Degree (Regional and City Planning) from the University of Oklahoma. Mr. Neal is also the current MPO representative of the Federal Highway Administration’s (FHWA) Transportation Asset Management Expert Task Group (TAM-ETG), a member of the Transportation Research Board’s (TRB) Standing Committee on Transportation Asset Management (AJE30), member of the American Association of State Highway Transportation Officials’ (AASHTO) Center for Environmental Excellence (CTE) Technical Working Group, member of the Association of Metropolitan Planning Organizations (AMPO) Technical Committee, and the inaugural chair of the Statewide Resiliency Technical Work Group for the Texas Association of MPOs (TEMPO).

Jose Marines, City of Lewisville

Jose Marines is an urban planning research student with hands-on experience with non-profit, government, and private business entities. Jose graduated from the University of North Texas with a Bachelor's in Urban Policy and Planning, where he is currently pursuing his Master’s in Public Administration. He currently serves as the administrative analyst for the city of Lewisville parks and recreation department. 

Kendall Howard, AICP, Halff Associates

Kendall Howard, AICP is a young professional senior planner/project manager at Halff Associates with over ten years specializing in community, parks, and trails planning. She joined Halff in 2016 after working as a transportation planner at the North Central Texas Council of Governments. Kendall received her Masters in City and Regional Planning from UT-Arlington and her Bachelor's in Urban Studies and History from UT-Austin. She has been AICP-certified since 2014. Kendall has worked with over a dozen communities to develop systemwide parks, recreation, and open space master plans that are both visionary and implementable. She is passionate about bringing together diverse voices to create a community-driven plan. 

Laura Freeland, Southern Dallas County IPTMA

Laura Freeland assumed the position of Executive Director of the (Southern Dallas County) Inland Port Transportation Management Association (IPTMA) on January 1, 2021.  She works with the Board and member companies to provide comprehensive transportation solutions to employers and employees in the Southern Dallas County Inland Port area.

Laura brings to the IPTMA a strong background in transportation, logistics, strategic planning, and non-profit management. During her extensive career she has implemented industry leading revenue management systems and created multi-year strategic plans to transform organizations through change management practices. 

Dr. Lindsey Wilson, City of Dallas

Dr. Lindsey Wilson serves as the inaugural Director for the Office of Equity and Inclusion, where she operationalizes equity and inclusion and provides oversight for four divisions and internal and external welcoming efforts. Prior to joining the City of Dallas, she served as the Senior Program Coordinator for Snohomish County in Everett, Washington. Dr. Wilson holds over 10 years of experience in local government and has a background in postsecondary education as she supported the University of Washington’s commitment to diversity, equity, and inclusion through the development and oversight of graduate student programming for racially diverse populations. She believes everyone has a role in advancing equity and is committed to system changes to address disparities.

Mikel Wilkins, P.E., ENV-SP, LEED AP, TBG Partners 

An Environmental Engineer with over 25 years of experience, Mikel collaborates with teams across the firm to evaluate the sustainable performance of projects under design to identify opportunities to enhance the triple bottom line. Mikel specializes in planning, design, and policy related to the integration of green infrastructure systems into the built environment. He enjoys multi-disciplinary design approach projects that rely on creativity, innovation, education, and compassion to guide the planning and design process and ultimately provide the most community benefits. Mikel also has a passion for education and currently teaches a class on sustainable infrastructure as an adjunct professor at Southern Methodist University.

Richard Luedke, AICP, City of Lewisville

Richard Luedke earned a Bachelor of Environmental Design in 1991 and a Master of Urban Planning in 1993, both from Texas A&M University.  He started his career in Wichita Falls and went on to serve the North Texas communities of Keller and Argyle.  For the past eight years, Richard has served the City of Lewisville, a community of 132,000, as Planning Director.  He became a member of the American Institute of Certified Planners (AICP) in 1996 and has served as the Professional Development Officer (PDO) for the Texas Chapter of the American Planning Association for the past twelve years.  As PDO, Richard administers scholarships for planners taking the AICP exam and conducts 11 exam preparation workshops across the state each year.  He also has written and implemented many development regulations and comprehensive plans for the communities that he has served over the past 29 years.

Staron Faucher, AICP, WSP

Staron Faucher, AICP is an Assistant Vice-President and Senior Lead Mobility Planner at WSP in Dallas, Texas, specializing in thoroughfare planning, bike and pedestrian studies, corridor redevelopment, and land use analyses - but he is most passionate about advocacy planning and equity. He received his Master in Regional and City Planning from the University of Oklahoma, and Environmental Studies from Baylor University. Staron is a member of the American Planning Association's AICP Ethics Committee and is currently the Director for the North-Central Section. He was also the author of the 2018 APA Viewpoint Article “Doing Good vs Doing Well,” which discusses the balance of fiscal and social responsibility planners have to consider while serving their communities.

Dr. Valerie Miller, AICP, The Olsson Studio

Valerie has over 17 years of experience in urban planning, urban water issues in both drought and flooding, and project management. She has worked in both public and private sectors, developing short-term and long-term strategy plans, cross-functional collaboration, and strategy management and implementation. Valerie enjoys working on projects involving multiple stakeholder groups and complex, large-scale visioning. She specializes in bringing people together and writing effective policy, while ensuring the character of the community is kept. She also forecasts potential hazards that could impact communities to better prevent long-term damage. Valerie received her PhD of Public Administration from UT Dallas, Master’s of Water Management and Bachelors of Landscape Architecture and Urban Planning from Texas A&M University. 

Alexis Jackson, AICP, City of Celina EDC

Alexis Jackson has spent the past 5 years working for the City of Celina’s Economic Development Corporation as the Executive Director. Previously, she spent much of her career in the private sector with larger AE firms. She has over 20 years of experience in community and economic development. Alexis is very passionate about supporting small businesses and shopping local in Celina. Alexis received her Masters of Urban and Regional Planning from the University of Florida in 2002. Go Gators! She received her American Institute of Certified Planners registration in 2007.  Alexis considers herself a Texan, although she was born and raised in Florida. Her son, Wyatt Jackson, is a 3rd grader this year at O’Dell Elementary. She loves Celina and hopes to continue to support the community in a number of ways.

Bill Dahlstrom, FAICP, JD, Jackson Walker

Bill Dahlstrom, FAICP, JD,  is a partner at Jackson Walker, LLP who practices in the Firm’s Land Use Law Practice Group.  He combines the practical knowledge learned as a professional land planner with his legal training to provide a most unique approach to land use matters. He focuses his practice on all areas of land use and incorporates a planning problem solving process in land use and land development issues.  He graduated with a Bachelors of Urban Planning from the University of Cincinnati, College of Design, Architecture, Art & Planning, and a law degree from the University of Texas School of Law. Bill has spoken at numerous seminars on land use law, including programs at the University of Texas School of Law Land Use Law Conference, Focus North Texas, State Bar of Texas Advanced Real Estate Law Course, PESI Land Use Law Seminar, CLE Eminent Domain Conference, American Planning  Association Annual Conference, APA Texas Conferences, and The Institute for Local Government Studies Short Course.

Dr. Nikki Ceaser Small, Dallas College Cedar Valley

Catherine Osborn, AICP, AECOM

Catherine Osborn is a Transportation Planner in the Transit-Rail Planning Division of AECOM. With over 4 years of professional planning experience, she specializes in parking management, transit planning, and transit-oriented development.Prior professional experience includes several land use and parking studies as Transportation Planner with the North Central Texas Council of Governments (NCTCOG). Some notable projects include the Regional Parking Utilization Database and a district parking study in Deep Ellum. Catherine received a Master of City and Regional Planning (MCRP) from the University of Texas at Arlington and a Bachelor of Urban Studies from the University of Texas at Austin.

David Nevarez, P.E., PTOE, CFM, City of Dallas

David has worked at the City of Dallas since 2017 managing reviews of engineering plans and zoning changes. He is a registered professional engineer with experience in traffic operations and transportation projects including site planning, roadway design, urban planning and municipal services. Throughout over 18 years of experience across these disciplines, David has conducted parking demand studies and design projects. Prior to joining the City of Dallas, David was a project manager at DeShazo Group. David’s oversight included parking demand studies and design projects for NorthPark Center, Galleria Dallas, Dallas Arboretum and the Shops at Park Lane in Dallas, Texas, among others. David is currently chair of the Institute of Transportation Engineers Parking Standing Committee. He holds a bachelor’s degree in Civil Engineering from The University of Texas at El Paso and an engineering Master’s Degree from RWTH University in Aachen, Germany.

Jason Laumer, City of Celina

The City of Celina’s City Manager, Jason Laumer, joined in 2017 and immediately began fostering an environment that has led to several key partnerships with community stakeholders; including the Celina Independent School District, Collin County, Collin College, and area businesses and developers, that have resulted in Celina being fastest growing city in the state of Texas. In addition, Jason’s commitment to servant leadership has instilled taking ownership and using innovation from his leadership team, employees, as well as the City’s elected officials. He continues to collaborate with the Mayor and City Council on managing Celina’s smart growth and development while still maintaining the City’s strong sense of community and agriculture roots.

Jennifer Sanders, Dallas Innovation Alliance 

Jennifer Sanders is Cofounder and Executive Director of the Dallas Innovation Alliance (DIA) a 501c3 public-private partnership dedicated to supporting Dallas’ smart cities strategy. At the DIA, she has collated a network of three dozen members and works with over 20 departments at the City of Dallas. DIA’s Smart Cities Living Lab is the fastest-to-market smart cities initiative in the country. The DIA is currently working on projects related to equity, focused on mobility, digital access and public safety; and launched a regional initiative in 2020, the North Texas Innovation Alliance (NTXIA), which works cross-sector and cross-jurisdiction to create the most connected, smart and resilient region in the country. The NTXIA is the largest regional initiative in the country. She is community-driven, and has served as President of the Mayor’s Star Council, cohort member of Leadership North Texas, board member of the Suicide & Crisis Center, Vice Chair of Better Block, among others. She has received the UN Day Global Leadership Award, has been named to Dallas Business Journal’s 40 Under 40 and Top Women in Technology, State Scoop’s Top Women in Technology, and Tech Week 100. She graduated from the University of Virginia.

Josh Giles, City of Carrollton

Josh Giles is the Development Program Manager for the City of Carrollton, responsible for executing strategic land acquisitions, managing a tax increment financing district, cultivating redevelopment opportunities, negotiating and managing development agreements and serving as the staff liaison for the Transit-Oriented Development (TOD) Committee and the Historic Downtown Carrollton Association (HDCA). Josh is a 6th generation Texan who grew up in Fort Worth, where he attended All Saints’ Episcopal School, earned a BA in Music, cum laude from the University of North Texas and a Master of Land and Property Development from Texas A&M University. In previous roles, Josh served as an Associate for an adaptive re-use commercial real estate developer, an Analyst for an international residential investment firm and a Land Acquisitions Specialist for a Fortune 500 company. Josh is an Eagle Scout. 

Kim Dobbs, City of Lavon

Kim currently serves as the City Manager of the City of Lavon, a rapidly growing small city in southeast Collin County. Having worked in local and state government for 35 years, Kim previously served as the Assistant City Manager and Director of Community and Economic Development for the City of Heath. Kim holds a Master of Public Policy and Administration and a Bachelor of Business Administration from Baylor University. 

Dr. Laura Keyes, AICP, UNT

Laura Keyes, Ph.D., AICP, holds a position of Senior Lecturer and Undergraduate Coordinator in Nonprofit Leadership Studies and Urban Policy and Planning for the Department of Public Administration at the University of North Texas. She teaches courses on community development, nonprofit management, and program evaluation. Her research interests include, local government, age friendly cities, livable communities, undergraduate education, and service learning. She has authored and co-authored peer-reviewed publications and book chapters covering topics on local governments, public services, nonprofit management, and organizational theory.

Lashondra Stringfellow, AICP, City of Cedar Hill

LaShondra Stringfellow obtained her Master’s Degree in City and Regional Planning from the University of Texas at Arlington. Currently the Planning Director at the City of Cedar Hill, her 20 plus years of planning experience also includes the Texas municipalities of McKinney, Arlington, League City, and Dallas. She was the Planning Manager at League City when the staff was awarded the Texas APA Planning Awards for Current Planning (2006) and the Comprehensive Plan (2011). In 2022, the City of Cedar Hill was awarded the Environmental Planning Gold Award for its Comprehensive Plan, which was completed in-house. This plan is a growth guide that will enable the city to realize its vision “to be a city within a park”. She has managed major code amendments for zoning and subdivision ordinance re-writes, city-wide rezoning, gas well drilling, alcoholic beverage uses, commercial design standards, and food deserts. Her department oversaw the planning process and adoption of the Downtown Complete Streets Plan of which construction on Phase 1 was recently completed.

Molly Plummer, Trust for Public Land

Molly Plummer is the Parks for People Program Manager for the Trust for Public Land's North Texas office.  She holds a Masters of Landscape Architecture from the University of Texas at Arlington and has a background in studio art.  Her research is focused on how social resiliency and the urban built environment are impacted by historic landscape architecture and planning mechanisms.  At the Trust for Public Land, Molly manages a number of projects including GIS-based city-wide planning initiative, a crowdsourced park quality assessment project, a watershed level master plan for parks and trails in Southern Dallas, the design and development of several parks projects in Dallas, in addition to organizing the community engagement and participatory design that accompanies these projects.

Ravi Shah, AIA, CBO, City of Carrollton

Ravi Shah, AIA, CBO,  is the Director of Development Services for the City of Carrollton, Texas, where he manages all Planning, Building Inspection and Transit-Oriented Development. He has a bachelor’s degree from the University of Texas in Architecture and Business Administration, has been with Carrollton since 1993 when he started as a Plans Examiner. He moved on to Assistant Building Official, then to Building Official and then to his current position in 2006. Shah has served on the board of the International Code Council in 2008 and 2011. 

Travis Liska, AICP, NCTCOG

Travis Liska, AICP, Principal Transportation Planner, manages regional land use / transportation planning projects for the North Central Texas Council of Governments, the Metropolitan Planning Organization for the Dallas – Fort Worth region.  His experience includes transit-oriented development planning, parking management policy, and analysis on the economic relationship of land development to transportation through value capture, benefit cost analysis, and funding. He also led the creation of NCTCOG’s Coordinated Land Use and Transportation Planning Task Force and the Transportation Department’s gentrification study.   Travis holds a bachelor’s in Geography/GIS and a master’s in urban and Regional Planning from Texas A&M University. 

Sue Hounsel, AICP, City of Dallas

Sue Hounsel is a Manager in the City of Dallas Office of Economic Development (OED) and has been employed with the City of Dallas since 2002. During this time her catalyst project achievements include the transformation of the Design District into an eclectic urban neighborhood, development of the Lake Highlands Town Center, mixed-income housing developments in the Bishop Arts area, TOD developments including Lancaster Urban Village, and the creation of the 4315 Innovation Center for workforce development. She has over twenty-seven years of experience in urban planning and economic development. Before moving to Dallas, she previously worked with the City of Houston and the City of Austin in planning and economic development. Ms. Hounsel is a member of the American Institute of Certified Planners (AICP). She holds a Bachelor of Arts in Social Science from Michigan State University and a Master of City Planning from Georgia Tech, including a Graduate Certificate in Real Estate. 

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