Fostering Equitable Communities: Planning and Acting for Environmental Justice

APA Illinois Chapter


Thursday, September 14, 2017
9 a.m. - 10:30 a.m. CDT

CM | 1.50

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Equitable, healthy communities are created through the intentional examination of policies and practices that, even if they have the appearance of fairness, may serve to marginalize some or perpetuate disparities. Working toward equity requires planners to understand historical context and commit to long-term investment in social structures.


This deep dive session will examine how planners can foster equitable communities. We will discuss lessons we can learn from the past, hear about what jurisdictions are doing across our region, and engage in a facilitated discussion about environmental justice and green communities.


Speakers will give brief presentations, followed by break out sessions where attendees participate in a focused discussion facilitated by a presenter. Discussion topics include:

·         How can planners foster environmental justice in their communities?

·         What are the best methods for engaging resident groups and other historically underrepresented constituencies?

·         How can we learn from citizen planners and citizen scientists to create a community-led planning process?


This session is sponsored by the APA-IL Diversity Committee.




Marcella Bondie

Marcella Bondie Keenan, LEED AP, is the Director of RainReady Home at the Center for Neighborhood Technology. RainReady Home partners with communities to reduce their risk of urban flooding and realize the benefits of green infrastructure and resilient practices. Prior to CNT, Ms. Bondie Keenan consulted for federal and local ... Read More

Angela Brooks, AICP

Angela Brooks is the senior contract administrator for the Chicago Housing Authority. Previously she served as associate director of real estate development for Heartland Housing and was program administrator for the City of Seattle Office of Housing. She has been an active member of APA since 1996 and has served ... Read More

Dawn Thompson-Ellis

Over eleven years of water resource planning, protection, management and compliance experience: the Clean Water Act, Illinois Pollution Control Board rules, the Illinois Water Quality Management Plan (IWQMP), Section 319 Nonpoint Source Management Program, watershed and wastewater management plans and the National Pollution Discharge Elimination System (NPDES) program, and the ... Read More

Alan Walts

Alan Walts is Director of the Office of Enforcement and Compliance Assurance in U.S. EPA Region 5, which serves Illinois, Indiana, Michigan, Minnesota, Ohio, Wisconsin and 35 tribes. This Office coordinates enforcement, and manages the Region’s Environmental Justice and National Environmental Policy Act programs. From 1996-2007, Alan was ... Read More

Contact Info

Trevor Dick,