Equity Diversity Inclusion
APA has made a focused commitment to Equity, Diversity, and Inclusion in all forms, as a means to achieving thriving communities in which everyone has equal opportunity to live a safe, healthy and prosperous life.
Diversity and Inclusion Mission, Vision, and Strategy
APA reached a milestone in April 2018 when the APA Board of Directors approved a Diversity and Inclusion strategy. This sets forth an association-wide plan for how we better promote the understanding and practices of diversity and inclusion, both within and outside the planning community and profession.
This strategy is the result of years of conversation and dedication among our members and leaders, and APA thanks the many voices that paved the way for this organizational transformation and fostered the roots of meaningful change.
In 2019, APA's Board accepted the report of a special Social Equity Task Force and ratified the Equity in Planning Policy Guide. Recommendations from both documents were reviewed by the Equity, Diversity, and Inclusion Committee and are being integrated into the existing Diversity and Inclusion Strategy. APA's elected leaders are currently centering equity in the organization's strategic planning process.
Achieving a foundation built on equity, and promoting a culture of diversity and inclusion, is an evolutionary process that will require ongoing learning and improvement. The goals in the strategy are being carried out on many fronts over time by various levels of leadership, component groups, member volunteers and staff.
This webpage will be updated regularly to describe how this journey is coming to life dynamically.
Voices of Equity in Planning Video Series
Equity is a necessary guiding principle for planners and all who participate in the process of planning as advisors, advocates, and decision makers. The first video in APA's new multi-part series, Voices of Equity in Planning, includes interviews with public- and private-sector planners across the country, whose work has centered equity for years.
How Can YOU Get Involved?
- Access tools that help you inegrate equity into planning practice through APA’s new Social Equity Research KnowledgeBase.
- Understand and apply the concept of "equity in all policies," as described in the Planning for Equity Policy Guide.
- Volunteer as an APA Ambassador to educate and empower youth, and reach diverse audiences with messaging about the value of planning in communities.
- Join one of APA's population-based divisions for more direct interaction with women, Latino, LGBTQ and Black planners.
- Volunteer on your local chapter diversity committee, or take the lead in creating new programs and initiatives.
- Enroll in the Diversity and Inclusion Training Series in APA Learn.
Equity, Diversity, and Inclusion Committee
The Equity, Diversity, and Inclusion Committee contributes to learning that advances an EDI-focused culture within APA and the profession, and provides insights to APA elected and executive leadership on equity, diversity and inclusion that advances APA's approved strategies.
Silvia E. Vargas, FAICP | Chair
Elizabeth (Libby) Tyler, FAICP | Vice Chair
Angela D. Brooks, AICP
Marcella Bondie Keenan, AICP
Alexander D. Cahill
Edna Ledesma, PhD
Victoria Mason-Ailey, AICP
Mehri Mohebbi, PhD
Perris Straughter, AICP
Susan A. Wood, FAICP
APA Chapters and Divisions
APA Chapters and Divisions are actively committed to promoting diversity, inclusion, and equity within local communities and the broader planning field.
APA Divisions and EDI
APA Divisions connect you with other planning professionals who share your passions, challenges, and experiences. Although all APA divisions are committed to promoting diversity and equity within local communities as well as the field, four APA divisions and one interest group specifically focus on planning issues that concern special populations. Explore what Divisions have to offer (students can join up to five for free).
APA Chapters and EDI
Chapters get you involved in APA close to home. They're your local source for networking and professional development. You'll share experiences with colleagues and broaden your perspective beyond your commission or office. When you join APA, you automatically become a member of your local chapter.
A number of chapters are engaged in addressing diversity and social equity. Chapters are hosting their own diversity summits, offering mentoring programs, and cultivating diverse chapter leaders. The following APA Chapters have active diversity committees:
- New Jersey
- New York Metro
- North Carolina
- Northern New England Chapter (Maine, Vermont, New Hampshire)
- Rhode Island
Visit your local chapter's website to learn more about its diversity efforts and to catch up on the latest planning information in your region.