Sessions & Registration

AICP members can earn Certi­fication Maintenance (CM) credits for the activities at this event. When CM credits are available, they are noted at the end of an activity description. More information about AICP’s CM program can be found at

AICP members must be in attendance for the duration of the event in order to receive CM Credit.

Keynote Session

Date: February 23rd, 2021

Time: 5 PM – 7 PM

CM: 2.0

APA CM #: 9211837

The opening session will begin with Arlene Way (Executive Director, Arbor Hill Development Corporation) and Dr. David Lewis (UAlbany) discussing the partnership and forthcoming studios, followed by Professor Jared Enriquez (UAlbany) who will outline the conference agenda. Tanya McGee (Chemung County Planning and Doctoral Candidate, Binghamton University) and Nasibah Elmi ( NYS Department of Environmental Conservation) will discuss the intersectionality of their work experience as female planners of color in upstate New York. Dr. Ruth Wilson Gilmore will keynote this session. She will take the long broad view to illuminate the need for more planners of color, how planning has marginalized communities of color, and provide comprehensive view of what planning for racial justice should/could be.

Speakers: Dr. David Lewis, Arlene Way, Jared Enriquez, Tanya McGee, Nasibah Elmi

Keynote with Dr. Ruth Wilson Gilmore

Public Health Justice and Planning

Date: February 24th, 2021

Time: 12 PM – 2 PM

CM: 2.0

APA CM #: 9211831

Centuries of policies have contributed to the creation of segregated neighborhoods and enforced methods of anti-Blackness and systemic assault on the mental, physical and emotional health of people of color.

Panelists will share their experiences as practitioners on the importance of seeing public health from an intersectional social justice lense to explore 1) how the practice of planning has contributed to the creation of the multihazard neighborhoods.; 2) explain the emergence of the theories of John Henryism and Weathering; 3) articulate how both the physical and social environmental factors result in minority health disparities; and 4) provide potential new planning practices that might assuage racist health outcomes.

Speakers: Kiara Van Brackle, Tanya McGee

In Pursuit of Racial Justice in Housing Policy

Date: February 24th, 2021

Time: 5 PM to 7 PM

CM: 2.0

APA CM #: 9211830

Housing Policy in the United States has deep roots in colonialism and racism. Government led efforts to provide class mobility to primarily to whites have led to enormous disparities in socioeconomic characteristics between whites and people of color in America.

This session will explore the inextricable link between the geographic boundaries where racist policies existed and the disparity in wealth, access to opportunity and housing for the populations within those boundaries. This session aims to arm participants with the tools to identify where current practices are causing disparate impacts on people of color and how to incorporate anti-racism and build community resiliency.

The session will be comprised of academic scholars, practitioners in housing and community organizers who will share their perspective, achievements and challenges in pursuing equity and social justice in housing policy.

Speakers: Dr. Jeffrey Lowe, Virginia Rawlins, Rebecca Gerrard, Sam Wells, Sean Taylor

Recentering Race in Environmental Justice

Date: February 25th, 2021

Time: 12 PM – 2 PM

CM: 2.0

APA CM #: 9211829

As the primary arbiters of land use and development decisions, urban planners have played a central role in America’s ongoing legacies of environmental racism. The concept of environmental justice emerged because scholars and activists recognized how Black, Indigenous, and Latinx communities have borne a disproportionate share of environmental and health risks. Scholars like Robert Bullard, Laura Pulido, and Dorceta Taylor, among many others, have illustrated how race usually predicts subjectivity to many environmental hazards, including the distribution of air pollution, the location of municipal solid waste facilities, the location of abandoned toxic waste sites, toxic meat and farming facilities, and lead poisoning in children. Despite many studies confirming that racial minorities are more likely to be exposed to environmental threats than whites of the same social class, many Americans deny the centrality of race, instead asserting that economic class or the political affiliations of public officials have greater influence over the distribution of environmental hazards. As government leaders increasingly focus efforts on solving climate change, it is critical that activists and scholars call for racial reconciliation in proposed solutions for economic inequality. This session will explore various methods for reconciliation to revise planning processes so that we can redress past and ongoing injustices and position minority communities for a better future.

Speakers: Jared Enriquez, Dr. Scott Kellogg, Nasibah Elmi

Race and Economic Development: Towards More Than Just Growth

Date: February 26th, 2021

Time: 5 PM – 7 PM

CM: 2.0

APA CM #: 9211833

The backbone of any thriving place is a strong economy. Economic development strategies and programs have the potential to shape the distribution of benefits derived from growth. Historically, people of color have been limited in their ability to participate and prosper in the economy in any meaningful way. From the New Deal to Urban Renewal, ARRA, and the CARES Act, policies and programs intended to create economic opportunity have overwhelmingly benefited white, affluent, property (including invest capital) owning people and the industries they work for and own. Even strategies that hold great promise for leveling the playing field and promoting economic independence for people of color, such as entrepreneurship and workforce development, have fallen short due to long-standing structural inequality that limits their reach and effectiveness. How we differentiate growth from development, measure the success, and value racial justice will be key to changing future outcomes.

This session aims to: 1) discuss the role that economic development strategies and approaches have played in creating and perpetuating racial inequality; 2) illuminate how core concepts and the metrics of success in the field are inherently biased in ways that perpetuate white privilege; 3) expose how the process leaves many communities of color behind, and 4) discuss strategies to amend existing economic injustices and new tools that can promote more equitable distribution of the economic resources.

Speakers: Dr. Elsie Harper-Anderson, Arlene Way, Dr. David Lewis

Equitable and Just Practices for Transportation Planning

Date: February 27th, 2021

Time: 11 AM – 1 PM

CM: 2.0

APA CM #: 9211832

The fair distribution of transportation’s benefits and burdens is not often realized in transportation planning and investments. Instead, disadvantaged communities – namely, low-income communities and communities of color – are often disproportionately, negatively affected by transportation planning decisions. This calls into question how transportation decisions are made and how justice and equity concerns factor into transportation decision-making processes and outcomes.

This session thus aims to: 1) discuss definitions and measures of equity; 2) highlight equity (and inequity) in transportation planning; and 3) discuss strategies to embrace equity in transportation planning. Foundational to this session is the understanding that transportation equity issues go beyond issues of mobility, access to transit service, and access to jobs and urban areas. Instead, and in addition to mobility and accessibility, discussions of transportation equity also concern the disproportionate impacts of the negative externalities of transportation and are connected to a wide range of planning issues including housing, environmental sustainability, and economic development, among others. As such, this session examines transportation equity as related to mobility and accessibility, as well as embracing transportation equity as fundamental in examining larger, urban equity concerns.

Speakers: Dr. Dwayne Baker, Dr. Calvin Brown, Alexander McClean, Dr. Do Lee, Eric Bettis, Charles Brown

Body and Community Mapping: Healing and Mobility Tools for Feminist, Anti-Racist, and Decolonial Planning Practice

Date: February 27th, 2021

Time: 2 PM – 4 PM

CM: 2.0

APA CM #: 9211834

One of the primary ways that urban planning continues to enact sexist/racist/colonial practices is through methods of data “collection” and the approaches of analyzing that data, which put communities in the position of the known and planners in the position of the knower. For example, how Black communities experience “new urbanism” as a universal planning design goal has been ignored. New Urbanism has been promoted without recognizing the historic and contemporary privileges of white-settler communities (Raciti 2020). These positions and practices relegate the knowledge, institutions, ceremonies, and practices of women and non-white-settler community members in a subordinate place and uplift the knowledge, institutions, ceremonies, and practices of professionally trained planners, resulting in harm to and limited mobility for women and people of color. See Sweet 2018 for more on this, specifically on how planners can practice cultural humility to combat these power inequalities. With that context, this session will introduce methods that planners can use to co-create, rather than collect, data, and analytical techniques with the possibility of undoing sexist, racist and colonial practices that permeate planning in the field. Furthermore, these methods put into motion processes for healing and increased mobility. We will present both body map storytelling and feminist community mapping as methods that focus on co-creating data with community members and how those data can be collaboratively analyzed and used as the bases for collective planning to resolve past, current and future planning mistakes. An important part of these methods is the position of planners as culturally humble collaborators and foregrounding their subjectivity. Planners must be willing to engage in ways that include emotions, feeling and sensations connecting bodies and land within and around communities. They must also be willing to use their bodies and pay attention to their own vulnerability and power in planning practice. Using both body map storytelling and feminist community mapping provide a path for planners toward feminist, decolonial and anti-racist planning practices.

Raciti, A. (2020). Whose Traditions Count? Questioning New Urbanism’s Traditional Neighborhood in the American South. Journal of Planning Education and Research,

Sweet, E. L. (2018). Cultural Humility: An Open Door for Planners to Locate Themselves and Decolonize Planning Theory, Education, and Practice. E-Journal of Public Affairs, 7(2), 1-17.

Speakers: Dr. Sara Ortiz Escalante, Ana Romero Diaz, Dr. Elizabeth L. Sweet