Indiana Chapter - American Planning Association

A Post from the President


Posted on May 27th, by Jill Ewing in APA Indiana. No Comments

I think Spring has arrived even though I might question it after attending my daughter’s sectional track meet in Lowell last night. A brisk 41 degrees last night and I felt every cold degree run right through me while watching the girls compete with my wife. I am a licensed track starter for Indiana High School Athletic Association (IHSAA) as well as a soccer and basketball referee. I enjoy the team and personal competition and achievements of the girls and boys with their respective high schools and also the numerous recreational leagues. It is great to see the youth out there and hopefully they will continue a healthy lifestyle.

I myself enjoy biking and running on a regular basis for a healthy lifestyle or as a stress relief after a long day in the office. After reading a recent Facebook post, I guess the State of Indiana is not doing so well in the healthy lifestyle area. Hopefully this will change with two of our cities recently receiving a grant through APA from the Center for Disease Control (CDC). Two of the opportunities for those submitting grant applications were for opportunities for physical activities or access to healthy foods. Cities of Columbus and Indianapolis are currently working on studies to help promote physical activities within their communities. If interested the APA has information on their website at Plan4Health. This includes all of the grant awards across the country. As a region we did well in grants awarded with our fellow states in OKI also being awarded. Ohio received two while Kentucky received one award. Keep up the great planning work in Indiana and the region.

The Chapter has been busy on issues recently. Christopher Huff our Treasurer is planning the Fall Conference in South Bend which will be held on October 7-9, 2015. Something new this year at the conference is that the APA-IN Chapter will be joining forces with the Indiana Association for Community and Economic Development. Rose Scovel of IACED approached the Chapter and asked about joining forces for the Fall Conference. We felt this was a great opportunity for us to network with IACED membership and also provide diverse educational opportunities for our membership. This will be a great event and I hope you can join us in South Bend. More details will be coming soon and if interested please consider proposing a session at the conference. This will allow you to showcase the planning efforts you have worked hard at.

Jamie Palmer and Rose Scovel have been working on the OKI 2016 conference that will be held in Indianapolis in the Fall. Jamie and Rose are our co-chairs for the event and we will soon be asking for volunteers to help assist with the preparation for this three state conference.

Speaking of volunteers this is a great time to get involved and become a member of the Chapter Board. Josh Desmond the President-Elect is looking for candidates to run for our board positions. Those positions are Secretary, PDO, Citizen Planner, and the three region representatives for North, Central and South. The Chapter Board also has a vacancy at the PODO position which works on our citizen education and training for planning. APA will be handling the consolidated elections. You will receive the ballot from APA so you can vote on the national candidates as well as division and chapter candidates. Please make sure you email is correct with your APA membership listing.

The Chapter has been trying to also start a Young Planners Group. We need to hear what interests young planners have with educational opportunities to advance their careers or even a get together with a social event to meet and discuss the issues facing young planners. Jonathan Blake wants to hear from young planners around Indianapolis to help start this group up, if interested please contact.

Recently Josh Desmond and I attended the Leadership meetings in Seattle during the National Planning Conference on behalf of the Chapter. The Seattle NPC at the start was close to breaking the attendance record. The current record was the Las Vegas NPC which drew 6800 attendees and at the start of the Seattle NPC the attendance was 6600. Seattle was a great host and put on a great conference. To report on a few of the items learned while out in Seattle. APA staff is currently working on a new web page, one that is friendlier than the current set up. Chapter Presidents Council has even said it is difficult to find material on the APA site. APA Board has heard everyone and has instructed staff to work on a new website and hopefully this will roll out in the Fall. AICP Commission is continuing their work on Core Competency for the AICP exam. This is a work in progress on what areas of expertise or study a planner needs to be considered as a certified planner. AICP is considering areas that a planner needs to be competent in as environment, transportation, housing, zoning, economic development, historic preservation and other planning related topics. The Chapter Presidents Council has updated their requirements of the Chapters during meetings held in Seattle. Most importantly they are requiring the Chapters to offer a minimum of 16 CM credits to their membership during the year. Between the Fall and Spring Conference the Chapter Board has been meeting those requirements easily.

Please consider volunteering some time to help the Chapter as either a Board member or helping out with an upcoming conference such as OKI 2016. So let us hope that the weather changes and warms up. Enjoy your summer and hope to see everyone at a Chapter event, thank you.

Bob Thompson





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