Team Member Profiles
Sue Schwartz, FAICP, Team Leader
Sue Schwartz has been a professional planner for more than 25 years, most of that time working with neighborhoods to facilitate reinvestment in their communities. She is director of the department of planning & community development for the City of Greensboro, North Carolina. She was the project manager for award-winning Southside, an infill Traditional Neighborhood Development on the edge of Greensboro's downtown.
Schwartz was also instrumental in focusing attention on Greensboro's East Market Street, once the hub of the African American business district. Volunteer planners spent five days in with the community, resulting in the East Market Street Development Corporation, a $12.5 million streetscape and traffic management project, and $2.5 million in redevelopment funds to leverage private investment.
Schwartz has been active in the American Planning Association at both the state and national levels, serving as president of the North Carolina Chapter of APA, two terms on the AICP Commission, and a term as AICP President. During her tenure she launched the AICP Community Assistance Program.
Schwartz holds a BS in Geography and Urban Studies from the University of Pittsburgh, and a Master of Arts from the University of North Carolina, Charlotte.
Craig Farmer, FAICP
Craig Farmer is manager of urban planning for the consulting firm of Freese and Nichols, Inc. He has more than 30 years of public sector experience managing departments in the Texas cities of Lubbock, Carrollton, Grand Prairie, and McAllen.
Farmer has extensive economic development experience. He was involved in such projects as Lone Star Park, the Verizon Performing Arts Theatre in Grand Prairie, Starplex, and a $500 million redevelopment project next to Texas Tech University. His work won a national award for streamlining zoning and building regulations.
Cities have won Texas Planning awards for 10 projects that Farmer was in charge of, including comprehensive plans and two redevelopment plans using tax increment financing and public improvement districts.
Farmer serves on the advisory board of the Institute for Local Government Studies of the Center for American and International Law. He has served on the APA Board of Directors and was president of APA's Texas Chapter. He has also served on the Board of Directors of the Texas Municipal League and was president of the City Planner's Association of Texas.
Farmer holds a Bachelor's of Business Administration from the University of Texas and a Master's of Urban and Regional Planning from Texas A&M University.
Lance Schulte, AICP
Lance Schulte is a senior community planner with HDR involved in land use and transportation solutions. He has managed the planning for programs and projects integrating pedestrian and transit design into the fabric of communities and neighborhoods. These have involved coordination of rail, bus, and shuttle transit with pedestrian, bike, and open space networks.
His projects have included a regulatory development plan creating a new 3 million-square-foot pedestrian-based town center, multiple TOD master plans, and a 2.2 million-square-foot central campus revitalization plan integrating 24/7 active land use and three transit modes.
Schulte has 18 years of experience in local government, transit, university, consulting, and the private sector. His perspective is that innovative solutions can come from effective collaboration and a focus on sustainable pedestrian-based solutions to both site and neighborhood design.
He has served APA as a member of the AICP Commission and elected positions on both state and local boards. He has also taught Planning at the University of California Extension program.
Schulte holds Master of Urban and Regional Planning and Master of Business Administration degrees.
Jeff Taebel, FAICP
Jeff Taebel is director of community and environmental planning for the Houston-Galveston Area Council where he oversees the community and economic development, disaster recovery, environmental planning, livable communities, socioeconomic modeling, and sustainable development programs
His major accomplishments include: forming a broad coalition of local governments and organizations that secured major funding from the U.S. Department of Housing and Urban Development to prepare a sustainable development plan for the 13-county Houston-Galveston region; instituting a pedestrian-bicyclist "special districts" program to promote planning and reinvestment in communities to make them more bicycle- and pedestrian-friendly; partnering with the Texas Gulf Coast Chapter of the USGBC in an education program for school district administrators, board members, facility managers, and Parent-Teacher Organizations to promote "green school" design and management practices.
Taebel is a past president of APA's Texas Chapter and has also served on the Urban Land Institute Houston District Council Executive Committee and co-chaired its Sustainability Committee. His work has received local, state, and national awards.
Taebel holds a Master of Urban Planning degree from Texas A&M University and a BS in Life Sciences from the University of Nebraska.