President's Message

Chapter President, Nancy Eklund, AICP 

Robert Burns had some prescient words about the 2020 and 2021: “The best-laid plans of mice and men often go awry.” Although we made some progress on a few items, my term as APA Washington chapter president was unfortunately not what I’d hoped for or expected. COVID threw a big wrench into things; that said, fortunately, our planning community is largely still intact, in both health and employment. We are all adjusting to a new norm and making the best of what still seems an unnatural way to interact and do business. A resumption of relative “normalcy” can’t come fast enough!

APA WA/OAPA Joint Virtual Conference – the conference is coming fast upon us – October 13–15. A great session line-up is planned, with three very interesting keynote speakers. Have a look at the schedule of sessions and registration 2021 Virtual Joint Planning Conference page on our website. 

FYI, the 2022 APA Washington conference is scheduled for the week of October 10-14, in-person, in Vancouver! (We have to be out of the woods by then, don’t we??)

Student Scholarships to the APA Conference – Washington APA is providing a limited number of student scholarships to attend the 2021 Chapter Virtual Joint Conference. Please submit the scholarship application by Friday, October 8 to be considered for a scholarship.

Certification Maintenance Deadline – Be sure to check your CM status—APA has notified us of a large number of members who are running short on their credits, which must be logged by December 31, 2021. (May be a good idea to sign up for the conference! Over the next year, you can go back, watch sessions you may have missed, and collect a few more CMs.)

APA WA Chapter Awards – The winners of the Chapter Awards will be announced at the upcoming Planning Association of Washington Annual Conference, Monday, November 15, 5:30–7:00 PM The conference is going to be in-person at Campbells Resort in Chelan. If the ceremony becomes available virtually, we will provide instructions on the APA WA Awards page.

October is National Community Planning Month! – Now, almost more than ever, is a good time to celebrate how the work of planners is focused on making our world a better place. The pandemic has changed so much about not only our personal and professional lives, but also the complexion of our communities. Despite external pressures, it is your work that will lead us toward safer, resilient, more equitable, and more prosperous communities. 

Chapter Election Results – See the enclosed article about the newly elected leadership slate for the chapter and several of its sections. Congratulations to all! If you are in the Puget Sound Section, nominations for those positions must be submitted by Friday, October 8, 2021. Visit the Puget Sound Section webpage for nomination information.

Congratulations to Yorik Stevens-Wajda, AICP, on ascending the helm of APA WA in November. I wish him the best, and hope (like the rest of you) that we can resume normal life again soon, and put this pandemic behind us. And thanks to the hardworking board members who overcame hurdles to get good things done for the Chapter. All board members did fabulous work, with a special thanks to those who kept the Continuing Education and Planner Forums coming throughout the pandemic; ran the Awards Program, and those Section Presidents and Boards who managed to keep their Sections energetic and productive. A particular shout-out to Dee Caputo, FAICP, who, with the help of an active committee, made incredible strides in providing support and information about planning for our planning commissioners and elected officials; Yorik Stevens-Wajda, AICP and Paula Reeves, AICP, for their important work on the Legislative Committee; Maren Murphy, AICP, and Gwen Rousseau, AICP, of the Equity, Diversity, and Inclusion Committee who have begun development of the Chapter’s EDI charter and program; Kirk Rappe, AICP, of the Scholarship Committee who has wrestled with standardizing the program implemented throughout the four Planning Accreditation Board-approved planning programs in the state; and finally, the hard-working and incredibly patient Communications Committee members, Laura Benjamin, AICP, and Andrea Harris-Long, AICP, who have put out an excellent newsletter since they took it on two years ago!

I will continue to serve on the chapter board and a few APA Chapter President’s Council boards over the next year, wrapping up some of the activities that have progressed slowly during the pandemic. There’s a lot more we can do to improve the planning world, and APA WA will continue to get better and better! 

Get involved, … and keep up the good Planning! Thank you.

Nancy Eklund, AICP
APA WA President
[email protected]
(206) 850-1779