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2023 Conference Program
Please check back as the Conference Program page is updated daily

All sessions are currently being certified for CM credits. The Annual Conference will include sessions that have been certified for all mandatory CM credits including law, resilience, equity, and ethics.


Board Meeting


Registration Open


Mobile Tours


Click here for mobile tour details/descriptions

Welcome Reception



Registration Open


Breakfast Buffet


Leadership Development Breakfast


Welcome & Opening Keynote


Breakout Sessions


Lunch Buffet | Chapter Meeting & Bylaws Vote


Mobile Tours


Click here for mobile tour details/descriptions

Planning Commissioner Training


Breakout Sessions


Breakout Sessions


Breakout Sessions


President's Circle Reception (By Invitation Only)


An Evening Under the Stars in Star City Reception 



Registration Open


Breakfast Buffet


Planning Directors Breakfast


Mobile Tours


Click here for mobile tour details/descriptions

Breakout Sessions


Deep Dive Session #2


Breakout Sessions


Breakout Sessions


Lunch Buffet | 2023 APA Virginia Awards Ceremony

*Lunch & Awards Ceremony included in Conference Registration


Deep Dive Session #3


Breakout Sessions


Breakout Sessions


YPG Evening Social



Registration Open


Breakfast Buffet




Ethics Plenary



Ethics Case of the Year

Conference Program Highlights

All sessions are currently being certified for CM credits. The Annual Conference will include sessions that have been certified for all mandatory CM credits including law, resilience, equity, and ethics.


Keynotes & General Sessions

  • Keynote Speaker: Jenny Schuetz

  • Zoning Reforms for Housing

  • Ethics Case of the Year


Breakout Sessions

  • Storytelling Toward More Inclusive Public Engagement

  • Collaborating to Advance Affordable Housing Production

  • Affordable Housing Public-Private Partnership Case Study: A Planner's Perspective from Both Sides

  • Improving Communication Skills for Planners

  • Zoning and the Market: A pragmatic review of the Impacts of each on Housing

  • The Future of Cooler Streetscapes 

  • Route 419 Town Center Plan: Placemaking and the Art of Leveraging

  • Danville's Twenty-Year Overnight Success

  • Richmond’s Equity Moves: Using Transportation Planning to Build a More Equitable City

  • Establishing the Framework for Walkable Urbanism in Appropriate Locations: The Form-Based Alternative Overlay District

  • Oak Grove Center Plan Award-Winning Public Schools Engagement

  • Downtown Roanoke Flood Resilience

  • From Gray to Green: The Blueprint for Transforming a Coal-Fired Power Plant into a Sustainable and Accessible Neighborhood in Alexandria

  • Sustainable Waterfront Placemaking

  • Planning Supervisor's Shark Tank - Improving Management Skills

  • Expanding the Housing Landscape in Botetourt

  • Complete Streets – Safety Improvements Through Lane Reductions and Signal Removals

  • Collaborating with the Virginia Statewide Community Land Trust 

  • Environmental Justice Considerations in Planning with an Emphasis on Community Outreach

  • Cradle to Cradle – Trees, Planning, and the Living Landscape

  • Legislative & Supreme Court Decisions Update

  • Resume Clinic

  • Speed Planning - Mentoring Session

  • In the Zone with HousingForward Virginia: Virginia Zoning Atlas and ZONED IN

  • Developing a Virginia Zoning Atlas


Deep Dive Sessions

  • Leveraging the Outdoor Recreation Economy for Rural Revitalization and Health

  • Overwhelming the Most Photographed Location on the Appalachian Trail: McAfee Knob Trailhead Challenges and Opportunities 

  • 30X30: The Chesapeake National Recreation Area Designation

  • The Creation of a Solar Ordinance and the Lessons Learned Along the Way OR  Deep Dive Option – County Lessons Learned, VADEQ PBR Process and Solar Information, Dominion Energy Batter Storage & Share/Community Solar Program, working on getting someone for DCR Pollinator Smart Program


Quick Takes Sessions

  • Collaboration and Customer Service with a Splash of Land Use Planning

  • Public Engagement in Today's Hybrid World: The Good, The Bad, and The Oops

  • Climate Resilience in Housing: Collaborating for Success

  • Visualizing sea level rise in Virginia’s coastal zone

  • Green Infrastructure Applications to Mitigate Climate Change

  • Living Shorelines and Fairfax County: Striving to balance new laws with outdated stabilization practices   

  • Tactical Growth for Active Transportation in Northern Virginia

  • Mad about Matrices

  • On Track With the Virginia State Rail Plan


Mobile Tours

Sunday, July 16th — 1-5pm​

  • Rocky Mount/Franklin County - Including important economic development & transportation projects

  • Appalachian Trail Hike to Sawtooth Ridge​

  • Exploring Roanoke County’s Explore Park 


Monday, July 17th — 1-5pm

  • Botetourt Center at Greenfield - the County's signature economic development investment

  • Eds and Meds and Community Development - The Virginia Tech-Carilion Innovation Corridor and a Neighborhood Revitalization Target Area​

  • Transportation Projects in the Roanoke Valley


Tuesday, July 18th — 8:00-11:30am

  • Downtown Urban Sketch Workshop​

  • Downtown Roanoke Walking Tour​​

  • YOTA Art Tour - Roanoke's Year of the Artist Program

  • Mill Mountain Trails Plan


More detailed descriptions of mobile tours can be found on the Mobile Tour page
2023 Mobile Tour Sessions Descriptions


Other Events to Highlight

  • Quarterly Board Meeting

  • Planning Commissioner Training

  • Leadership Development Breakfast

  • Planning Directors Breakfast

  • Chapter Meeting and Bylaws Vote

  • 2023 Awards Ceremony

  • Sunday Opening Reception

  • President’s Circle Reception (Invitation Only)

  • Under the Stars in Star City - Monday Evening Reception

  • YPG Evening Social

2023 Keynote Speaker: Jenny Schuetz
Jenny Schuetz is a Senior Fellow at Brookings Metro, and is an expert in urban economics and housing policy. Dr. Schuetz has written numerous peer-reviewed journal articles on land use regulation, housing prices, urban amenities, and neighborhood change. Dr. Schuetz has appeared in the New York Times, Wall Street Journal, Washington Post, the PBS NewsHour, The Indicator podcast, Vox, and Slate.

Dr. Schuetz is the author of Fixer Upper: How to Repair America's Broken Housing Systems.

Topics of recent research include: how statewide zoning reform could improve housing affordability; local strategies to help renters during the COVID-19 crisis; rethinking homeownership incentives to narrow the racial wealth gap; and how housing costs exacerbate economic and racial segregation.

Before joining Brookings, Dr. Schuetz served as a principal economist at the Board of Governors of the Federal Reserve System. Dr. Schuetz was also an assistant professor at the University of Southern California and a post-doctoral fellow at NYU Furman. Dr. Schuetz is a nonresident senior fellow at GWU’s Center for Washington Area Studies and teaches in Georgetown’s urban planning program.

Dr. Schuetz earned a PhD in public policy from Harvard University, a master’s in city planning from M.I.T., and a B.A. with Highest Distinction in economics and political and social thought from the University of Virginia.

Dr. Schuetz currently serves on the Advisory Boards for Ivory Innovations and for Tech Equity.

Awards Luncheon
A record number of nominations were received for the 2023 APA Virginia Awards Program. The caliber of the nominations made the selection process very difficult for the 2023 Awards Committee, chaired by Meg Rupkey. The Awards Committee looks forward to recognizing the hard work and dedication of planners throughout the Commonwealth at the 2023 APA VA Awards Ceremony Luncheon on Tuesday, July 18th, 2023 at the Chapter's Annual Conference at Hotel Roanoke

Legislative Session
A review of the 2023 General Assembly sessions and the legislation, both passed and contemplated, that are of importance to planners within the Commonwealth. Topics include provisions related to solar energy approvals, short term rentals and public notification requirements, to list but a few. Chapter Lobbyist Eldon James will address the issues raised in 2023 and what we see on the horizon for 2024.

Ethics Session
This year's "Cases of the Year" is a series of four ethical scenarios modeled on real life planning issues. These scenarios were based on either informal inquiries or complaints filed with the Ethics Officer during 2022. Identifying factors such as names and locations have been changed so the focus can be on the educational aspect of each scenario. This "Cases of the Year" was created by the AICP Ethics Committee with assistance from Ralph Willmer, AICP Ethics Officer. The four scenarios are: sexual harassment, conflict of interest (two scenarios), and politicians and planners. AICP President Karen Wolf, FAICP, will be leading us through the Cases of the Year.

Karen Wolf, FAICP, has dedicated her career to public stewardship and advancing the benefits of planning. She is the President of the American Institute of Certified Planners (AICP) Commission after serving 2 terms as the AICP Commissioner from Region V.  She served as the Chair of the AICP Ethics and Exam Committees and is the former Secretary of the AICP Commission. Karen has served on numerous AICP task forces, including the CM Equity Credit Task Force, which recently established the new Equity credit requirement. She is co-chair of the Washington APA Chapter FAICP Nomination Committee. 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 planners new to the profession, as well as volunteering her time and teaching graduate students. Karen is also an affiliate instructor at the University of Washington (UW) in both the departments of Urban Design and Planning and Civil and Environmental Engineering. She serves on the UW Professional Council for Urban Design and Planning.  Karen has served for many years as the Chair of the Advisory Committee for Children's Hospital of Seattle providing input on the development of the hospital campus.   She has a Masters in Urban Planning and a Bachelors in Economics, both from the University of Washington.


Questions? Contact APA Virginia Staff,

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