David White, FAICP

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FAICP Statement

David White’s nearly 30-year public-sector planning practice has served Vermont’s most rural communities to its most urban. Working in Vermont’s largest city, David has helped secure Burlington’s place as one of the country’s most progressive livable and dynamic small cities. His work has been widely recognized within Vermont and across northern New England. Recognized for his patient manner and collaborative spirit, David’s distinguished career demonstrates a sustained commitment to planning with the long view. The result is a legacy of past work and future opportunities that provide a significant contribution to the community, and the planners that will follow him.

About Me

David is a life-long Vermonter - born and raised in the Connecticut River Valley, and long-time resident of the greater Burlington area. With his wife of 37 years Susan, they have three adult sons, two daughters-in-law, and three grandsons. They are passionate about being outdoors as much as they can, and are often found in the mountains skiing and hiking, on their boat enjoying Lake Champlain, or traveling to new destinations.

David has been a member of the National Ski Patrol since 1981 serving as both a professional and volunteer apline ski patroller (Alta Ski Lifts, 1984-87; Smugglers’ Notch Resort, 1981-84 & 1999-2011; and, the Mt. Mansfield Ski Patrol at Stowe Mountain Resort 2021-present).

Professional Biography

David E. White, FAICP is a widely recognized leader, urbanist, and innovator in fostering and facilitating successful and vibrant community planning and urban development projects.

He is the founder and principal of Sterling Mountain Community Planning & Design, LLC - a consulting practice he created in 2022 specializing in helping communities, planners, consultants, nonprofits, and enlightened developers improve the quality, vitality, sustainability, and livability of their projects.

Prior to going into private practice,, David worked for the City of Burlington, VT - Vermont’s largest city nestled on the eastern shore of Lake Champlain. David served as the Director of Planning from 2007 to 2021, and the City’s Comprehensive Planner from 1995 to 2007. In his 26+ years of service to the City, David played a leading role in securing and advancing Burlington’s place as one of the country’s most celebrated progressive livable and dynamic small cities. 

David is a past President of the Northern New England Chapter of the American Planning Association where he served as a member of the Chapter’s Executive Committee from 1995 to 2021. He was admitted to the American Institute of Certified Planners (AICP) - the professional institute of the American Planning Association - in 1997. In 2018 David was inducted into the AICP College of Fellows in recognition of his transformative impact in the communities he has served, significant contributions to the field of planning, and excellence in professional practice.

David holds a Master’s Degree from Duke University’s Nicholas School of the Environment and Earth Sciences received in 1989, and a Bachelor’s Degree in Geography from the University of Vermont received in 1984.


Duke University
Graduation Date: May, 1989
Degree Level: Graduate

University of Vermont
Graduation Date: May, 1984
Degree Level: Undergraduate

Job History

Burlington (VT) Office of City Planning
Director of Planning
July,2019 - November,2021
Burlington, VT
United States

Burlington (VT) Dept. of Planning & Zoning
Comprehensive Planner
August,1995 - August,2007
Burlington, VT
United States

Burlington (VT) Community and Economic Development Office
Interim Director
January,2019 - July,2019
Burlington, VT
United States

Burlington (VT) Dept. of Planning & Zoning
Director of Planning & Zoning
August,2007 - June,2019
Burlington, VT
United States

Lamoille County Planning Commission
Assistant Director
October,1989 - August,1995
Morrisville, VT
United States

Sterlington Mountain Community Planning and Design, LLC
January,2022 - Present
Jericho, VT
United States