APA Board of Directors Biographies


Angela D. Brooks, FAICP headshot

Angela D. Brooks, FAICP

Angela Brooks is the director of the Illinois office of the Corporation for Supportive Housing. She currently serves on the Chicago Board of Zoning Appeals, and the Illinois Affordable Housing Advisory Commission, and is co-chair of the National Housing Supply Accelerator helping communities meet the housing needs of residents. Brooks is a native of Seattle and a graduate of Jackson State University, where she received her Bachelor of Arts in Urban Studies, and the University of New Orleans, where she received a Master of Urban and Regional Planning. An active member of APA since graduate school, Brooks has held numerous leadership positions in the Housing and Community Development Division, Planning and the Black Community Division, Diversity Task Force, Washington Chapter, and co-chair of the Housing Policy Guide. She is a member of Alpha Kappa Alpha Sorority, Inc., and The Links, Incorporated.

Sue Schwartz, FAICP headshot

Sue Schwartz, FAICP

Sue Schwartz's career in planning spans over four decades. Thirty-six of those have been in Greensboro, North Carolina, where she has been the planning director since August 2011. Her previous work focused on neighborhood revitalization and corridor reinvestment. Several of her projects have earned state and national awards. Since 2006, she has been a faculty/consultant for NeighborWorks America and is an adjunct faculty in the Public Administration Program at UNC Greensboro. She is also an accomplished TED Talk speaker. Being active in APA has been integral to Sue's growth as a planner. She previously served as AICP President and has held other leadership positions for APA North Carolina, the Chapter Presidents Council, and the Planning Accreditation Board. She has a bachelor's from the University of Pittsburgh in geography and urban studies and holds a master's in geography from the University of North Carolina at Charlotte Sue was inducted into the AICP College of Fellows in 2003.

Kristen Asp, AICP headshot
Secretary, Director Region VI

Kristen Asp, AICP

Kristen Asp is the planning director for the city of Westlake Village, California. She is a certified planner and earned a master's degree from Woodbury University and a bachelor's degree from Cal Poly San Luis Obispo. Asp originally became a member of APA as an undergraduate student and served as a student representative for the APA California Chapter. She has also served as the Los Angeles Section director and vice president for administration for the APA California Chapter.

Lauren M. Driscoll, AICP headshot
Treasurer, Director at Large

Lauren M. Driscoll, AICP

Lauren Driscoll is the director of Community and Development Services for the City of Salina, Kansas. She is a certified planner and holds a bachelor's degree from Grand Valley State University. Within APA, Driscoll has served as the president of the APA Alaska Chapter, chair of the Leadership Development Committee, chair of the Emerging Issues Committee for the Chapters Presidents Council, and chair of the Communications Committee.


Scott D. Turner, AICP headshot
Director Region I

Scott D. Turner, AICP

Scott Turner is the director of Planning for Environmental Partners in Quincy, Massachusetts, where he leads the firm's planning and stormwater practices. He is a member of the American Institute of Certified Planners, a registered Professional Engineer, and a LEED Accredited Professional in Neighborhood Development. His 30-year career has focused on private development, stormwater planning and design, sustainability, and climate change. He is the past chair of APA's Sustainable Communities Division and was the local host subcommittee chair for the 2021 National Planning Conference. He holds a Bachelor of Science degree in civil engineering and environmental studies and a Master of Science degree in city planning from Georgia Institute of Technology.

Ben Hitchings, FAICP headshot
Director Region II

Ben Hitchings, FAICP

Ben Hitchings, FAICP, is the principal of Green Heron Planning, LLC, in Durham, North Carolina, and an adjunct faculty member at the UNC School of Government. He has 30 years of experience working on planning issues and has developed award-winning plans at the local and regional levels. He is the former planning director for the Towns of Chapel Hill and Morrisville in North Carolina. He received his master's degree in planning from the University of North Carolina at Chapel Hill and a bachelor's degree from Amherst College. An active association member, Hitchings is a past president of the APA North Carolina Chapter. He also co-chaired the APA Student and New Member Task Force and chaired the Chapter Presidents Council.

Dawn Warrick, AICP headshot
Director Region III

Dawn Warrick, AICP

Dawn Warrick is an urban planner at Freese and Nichols, Inc. Before joining FNI, she worked for more than 23 years as a public-sector planner, including seven years as the City of Tulsa's planning director. She has served in senior planning roles for the Louisville Metro Government in Kentucky and the City of Fayetteville, Arkansas, giving her an understanding of large urban cities, as well as smaller communities. She taught as an adjunct lecturer for the University of Louisville's Master of Urban Planning program for six years. Dawn has served in APA leadership roles for the Arkansas, Kentucky, and Oklahoma chapters including professional development officer and chapter president. She earned a bachelor's in landscape architecture and a master's in geography from the University of Arkansas. She has been a certified planner since 2002.

Sara Copeland, FAICP headshot
Director Region IV

Sara Copeland, FAICP

Sara Copeland is the planning section manager in Burns & McDonnell's transportation practice and is based in Kansas City. Before joining Burns & McDonnell, Sara spent most of her career in the public sector, where she gained extensive experience in the development of comprehensive plans, redevelopment, and corridor plans, with a focus on plan implementation and capital improvements. She is an adjunct instructor for the University of Missouri-Kansas City's Urban Planning and Design program. She earned a master's degree in city planning and a bachelor's degree from the Massachusetts Institute of Technology. Sara has been active in APA throughout her career, including serving as chair of the APA Chapter Presidents Council, as the past president of APA Kansas, and in leadership positions with both the Missouri and Kansas Chapters. She was inducted into the AICP College of Fellows in 2022.

Allison G. Mouch, AICP headshot
Director Region V

Allison G. Mouch, AICP

Allison is a managing partner at Orion Planning + Design and is currently based in Missoula, Montana. Bringing 15 years of professional planning experience to the team, her areas of specialization include comprehensive plans, code development, public engagement, project management, mapping, and analysis, with a focus on collaboration as a means of achieving positive outcomes. She is AICP and an active member of the APA, past president of APA's Western Central Chapter, and currently sits on the Montana Association of Planners (MAP) Board of Directors. She holds a bachelor's degree in architecture from Miami University (Ohio), and a master's degree in urban and environmental planning from the University of Virginia in Charlottesville.

Nina Idemudia, AICP headshot
Director at Large

Nina Idemudia, AICP

Nina has been the CEO of CNT since September 2023. Previously, Nina served as Chicago Recovery Plan director for the Chicago Department of Planning and Development, ensuring equitable grant distribution across 11 critical program initiatives supporting Chicago's economic revival, director of planning for MUSE Community + Design, and as a planner for the City of Los Angeles. She is a Vanguard Fellow, a New Leaders Council Fellow, and a Civic Leadership Academy Fellow; and was also honored with a SHEro award by Los Angeles Councilmember Curren D. Price, Jr. for her community leadership. She was elected the first Black president of APA Illinois and is also a board member of the Chicago Metropolitan Agency for Planning. She is a graduate of the University of Michigan and the University of Southern California. As a native Detroiter, Nina understands firsthand how the built environment shapes the lives of society's most vulnerable populations.

Bruce Stiftel, FAICP headshot
Director at Large

Bruce Stiftel, FAICP

Bruce Stiftel is Professor Emeritus of City and Regional Planning at Georgia Institute of Technology where he served as school chair. His teaching and research at Georgia Tech and Florida State have focused on environmental planning, planning theory, citizen participation, and international development. Past president of the Association of Collegiate Schools of Planning, member of the Planning Accreditation Board, editor of the Journal of Planning Education and Research, and founding chair of the Global Planning Education Association Network, Stiftel has served APA on the chapter executive committees for Florida and Georgia, as co-chair of the departmental membership task force, education chair of the National Planning Conference Committee, vice-chair of the International Division, and member of the editorial advisory board of the Journal of the American Planning Association. He is a graduate of the State University of New York at Stony Brook and the University of North Carolina at Chapel Hill.

Silvia E. Vargas, FAICP headshot
Director at Large

Silvia E. Vargas, FAICP

Silvia Vargas, FAICP, is a principal planner at Calvin, Giordano & Associates in Miami. Having started her professional career as a planner in Monroe County, Florida, where she also served as a parks and recreation planner, Silvia spent 20 years at WRT Planning and Design before going on to form her planning practice. Silvia served as AICP Commissioner for Region III (2016-2020). During her term, she led the AICP College of Fellows Committee and co-chaired the AICP Exam Committee, and APA's Equity, Diversity, and Inclusion Committee. Silvia has been an active member of ULI's Women's Leadership Initiative (WLI) in South Florida. She has a Master of Urban Planning and a Bachelor of Arts in architectural studies from the University of Kansas. She is a member of the KU School of Public Affairs & Administration Advisory Board.

Karen Wolf, FAICP headshot
AICP President

Karen Wolf, FAICP

Karen Wolf has dedicated her career to public stewardship and advancing the benefits of planning. She recently retired from King County, Washington, where she served as a trusted advisor to elected leaders for more than 30 years. She has demonstrated her commitment to planning through mentoring, volunteering, and teaching new planners and graduate students. Within APA, she has served in several leadership roles, including the AICP Ethics and Exam Committee, APA Washington Chapter, and CM Equity Credit Task Force. Additionally, Wolf is an affiliate instructor at the University of Washington and serves on the UW Professional Council for Urban Design and Planning. She also served as the chair of the Advisory Committee for Children's Hospital of Seattle providing input on the development of the hospital campus. Wolf has a master's degree in urban planning and a bachelor's degree in economics from the University of Washington.

Julia Lave Johnston headshot
Chapter Presidents Council Chair

Julia Lave Johnston

Julia Lave Johnston is the director of education services for the California Association of Councils of Government (CALCOG), where she manages the California Academy for Regional Leadership (CARL) and develops and assists in creating education and training opportunities for CALCOG's 48 member agencies. Previous positions focused on integrating health and sustainability at the local and regional level and providing cutting-edge education for professionals as the director of the Land Use and Natural Resources program at UC Davis Extension. She developed and implemented climate and planning policy for the State of California as deputy director for planning policy in the Governor's Office under Governor Schwarzenegger. Julia has volunteered with APA for over 30 years including vice chair of the Chapter Presidents Council, president of the California Chapter, and director of the Sacramento Valley Section. Julia received a bachelor's degree in English from the University of California, Berkeley, and a master's degree in community and regional planning from the University of Oregon.

Chad M. Nabity, AICP headshot
Divisions Council Chair

Chad M. Nabity, AICP

Chad has been the planning director for the Hall County Regional Planning Commission in Grand Island, Nebraska, since December 1999. He has been involved with APA leadership since 2002. Chad has a variety of experience in planning issues in Nebraska ranging from work relative to infectious and communicable disease prevention, housing and land use, and zoning. In his spare time, he and his wife run a small community-supported agricultural operation on the outskirts of Grand Island.

Bianca Mers headshot
Student Representatives Council Chair

Bianca Mers

Bianca is passionate about creating more just and inclusive spaces and places. In her current role at EJP Consulting Group, she supports public housing authorities, cities, nonprofits, and numerous other stakeholders who are working together to build more affordable housing and transform neighborhoods. As the chair of the Student Representatives Council, she guides the council as it seeks to create meaningful opportunities for students and emerging planners to engage with and excel in the planning profession. Bianca earned her master's degree in city and regional planning from Georgia Tech and her bachelor's degree in international relations from the University of Delaware.