Committees - Metropolitan Planning Council

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MPC’s policy development, implementation, and advocacy work is informed by five issue-oriented committees:

Housing & Community Development
Land Use and Planning 
Water Resources
Effective Government 

The purpose of the committees is to provide leadership and counsel on work plan activities, policy formation, outreach, and other activities that advance short and long-term goals of the organization.

Housing & Community Development

Amy Khare

Pamela Daniels-Halisi

This committee focuses on policies and projects that address inequities in affordable housing provision and investments in community development across the region. This includes expanding affordable housing opportunities in job-rich areas, revitalizing disinvested communities through strategies to increase economic competitiveness, and pursuing more efficient and equitable allocation of government (municipal, state, public housing authority) resources to provide individuals with greater choice in where to live and work.

This committee is co-chaired by Amy Khare, Research Director, National Initiative on Mixed-Income Communities, and Pamela Daniels-Halisi, Managing Director of Community Development Lending, BMO Harris Bank. MPC staff liaison for this committee is Kendra Freeman, Director of Community Engagement and Ahmadou Drame, Manager of Housing and Community Development. 

Bennett Applegate
Applegate & Thorne-Thomsen, P.C.

Forrest D. Bailey
Draper and Kramer

David E. Baker

Chester Bell
U.S. Bank 

Betsy Benito
Corporation for Supportive Housing

Matthew Brewer
Bartlit Beck Herman Palenchar & Scott LLP 

Todd Brown 

Lee Brown
Teska Associates, Inc.

Andre Brumfield

Lissette Castañeda

Pamela Daniels-Halisi, Co-Chair
BMO Harris Bank

Ahmadou Drame, Staff Liason
Metropolitan Planning Council

Kendra Freeman, Staff Liason 
Metropolitan Planning Council 

Andy E. Geer
Enterprise Community Investments

Veronica Gonzalez
The NHP Foundation 

Linda Goodman
Goodman Williams Group

King Harris 
Harris Holdings Inc. 

Juanita Irizarry
Friends of the Parks 

Amy Khare, Co-Chair 
National Initiative on Mixed-Income Communities at Case Western Reserve University

Peter Levavi
Brinshore Development LLC

Laritza Lopez 
Purple Group

Fanny Lopez Benitez
Latino Policy Forum 

Bernard Loyd
Urban Juncture, Inc.

Robert E. Miller
Applied Real Estate Analysis, Inc.

Sameer Patel
Holland & Knight LLP

Bob Pamer 
Housing Action Illinois

Matthew R. Reilein
Cresset Partners

Pete Saunders
Village of Richton Park 

Bruce W. Taylor
MB Financial Bank, N.A. 

Mary W. Vasys
Vasys Consulting Ltd.

Stacie Young
The Preservation Compact

Wyllys Mann 
Baird & Warner, Inc. 

Terri Worman 

Land Use and Planning   

Alejandra Garza

Paul Carlisle

Through the improvement of current processes focusing on better planning and land-use decisions, local governments and agencies can actively chart the region’s future and determine investments to prioritize, based on agreed-upon goals and objectives, that can catalyze inclusive and sustainable economic growth. This committee will advise on the advocacy framework and research needed to understand how land-use policy shapes development and what is needed to align land use and planning challenges and solutions into a comprehensive vision.

This committee is co-chaired by Alejandra Garza, founder and President, AGG Consulting and Paul Carlisle, Executive Vice President, Wintrust Commercial BankingMPC staff liaison for this committee is Christina Harris, Director of Land Use and Planning. 

Paola Aguirre
Borderless Studio

Jaime Arteaga
Local Initiatives Support Corporation 

Christopher B. Burke
Christopher B. Burke Engineering, Ltd.

Adam Ballard 
Access Living 

Philip Beckham
P3 Markets

Ellen C. Craig

Paul Carlisle, Co-Chair
Wintrust Commercial Banking 

Fernando Se Maio 
Wintrust Commercial Banking 

Zena Diggs 
Bank of America  

Ghian Foreman 
Emerald South

Alejandra Garza, Co-Chair
AGG Consulting

Meleah Geerstma 
Natural Resources Defense Council 

Linda Goodman
Goodman Williams Group

Christina Harris, Staff Liaison 
Metropolitan Planning Council 

Juanita Irizarry
Friends of the Parks 

Rebecca Judd 
Donnelley Foundation

Thomas C. Kirschbraun
Jones Lang LaSalle

Kindy Kruller
Cook County Bureau of Economic Development

Sarah Langeliers

Mary Ludgin 

James Mann 

Erica Marquez Avitia 
Old Mission Capital LLC

Zorica Nedovic-Budic
UIC, College of Urban Planning and Public Affairs

Scot Pepper
Pepper Construction

Julian Posada
The Resurrection Project

Anjulie Rao 
American Institute of Architects 

James E. Mann

Rob Reuland
Site Design 

Emma Rodriguez Ayala 

Carol Ross Barney
Ross Barney Architects 

Traci Sanders
WXY Studio

Carol Ross Barney 
Ross Barney Architects, Inc. 

Elizabeth Scott 
Chicago Metropolitan Agency for Planning

David Siegel
Sidley Austin LLP

Dawveed Scully

Anton Seals 
Grow Greater Englewood

Paul Shadle 
DLA Piper

Raj Shah
Rush University 

David Siegel
Sidley Austin LLP

Unmi Song 
The Lloyd A. Fry Foundation 

Will Tippens
Related Midwest

Michael Toolis 

Steven Vance 
Map Strategies 

Pam Walter 
Drinker Biddle & Reath

Kimberly Wasserman Nieto
Little Village Environmental Justice Organization


Tom Kotarac

Paula Worthington

Mobility is a human right. Universal access to a multimodal, affordable, safe, reliable and efficient transportation system is a necessary condition to exercising that right. In our region, transportation plays a key role in economic and environmental sustainability. The Metropolitan Planning Council’s transportation program uses research and advocacy to sustain and improve that system, while ensuring that mobility outcomes are equitable across race, age, income and disability. The Metropolitan Planning Council Transportation Committee supports MPC staff with information, expertise, and professional connections.

This committee is co-chaired by Tom Kotarac, Vice President, Transportation and Infrastructure, Civic Committee and Paula Worthington, Senior Lecturer, University of Chicago- Harris School. MPC staff liaisons for this committee are Audrey Wennink, Director of Transportation, and Jeremy Glover, Associate

William Abolt 

Felip Ballesteros
Purple Group

Kyle Barnett
BMO Harris Bank

Dionne Baux
National Main Street Center, Inc.

Pedro J. Cevallos-Candau, Ph.D.

Kristi DeLaurentiis 
South Suburban Mayors and Managers Association

Cindy Fish
Fish Transportation Group 

Jackie Forbes
Kane County Division of Transportation

James Franczek
Franczek Radelet P.C.

Jeremy Glover, Staff Liaison
Metropolitan Planning Council 

Jacques Gordon
LaSalle Investment Management

Sidney Kenyon
DuPage County Division of Transportation

Tom Kotarac, Co-Chair 
Civic Committee of the Commercial Club of Chicago

Jill Leary
Regional Transportation Authority

Lynda Lopez
Active Transportation Alliance

Kate Lowe
University of Illinois at Chicago, CUPPA

Peter Malecek
Bank of America

Neil McMonagle
Ernst & Young LLP

David Mook
US Bank

Thomas H. Morsch 
Morsch Expeditions

J. Scot Pepper
Pepper Construction Company  

Paula Pienton
T.Y. Lin International, Inc. 

Oboi Reed

Robert G. Reiter
Chicago Federation of Labor, AFL-CIO

Carol Ross Barney
Ross Barney Architects

Stephen E. Schlickman
Schlickman & Associates 

Smita Shah
SPAAN Tech, Inc.

James P. Stirling

Emily Tapia-Lopez 
HNTB Corporation 

Erik Varela
Union Pacific Railroad

Audrey Wennink, Staff Liaison
Metropolitan Planning Council 

Laura Wilkison
Chicago Metropolitan Agency for Planning

Paula Wolff
Illinois Justice Project 

Paula Worthington, Co-Chair 
University of Chicago Harris School of Public Policy

Jon Zabrocki
Robinson Engineering

Water Resources  

Manju Sharma

Suzanne Malec-McKenna

Northeastern Illinois’ proximity to the abundant resources of the Great Lakes and access to multiple rivers and underground aquifers mean that we generally enjoy ample water. While our region’s water assets are considerable, they are also finite—in the case of Lake Michigan, governed by a Supreme Court Decree—and are facing a multitude of challenges due to infrastructure age, fragmented system management, and potential contamination. As climate change advances, shorter duration but increasingly intense and more frequent storm events—much of which cannot infiltrate nor evapotranspirate because of storm intensity and urban land use decisions—overwhelm stormwater infrastructure which is undersized and aging. The result is negative impacts for humans, aquatic ecosystems, and the ecosystem services they provide from Chicago to the Mississippi River and beyond. These realities jeopardize both public health and economic growth.

In response to these challenges, the Metropolitan Planning Council’s Water Resources program uses research, advocacy, education and technical assistance to: 1) ensure clean, equitable and abundant drinking water; 2) prevent flooding and improve water quality; 3) facilitate and encourage stewardship of our natural assets; and 4) foster social, economic and environmental benefits within communities.The Metropolitan Planning Council’s Water Resources Committee supports these efforts through information, expertise, guidance, and professional connections.

 This committee is co-chaired by Manju Sharma, Senior Vice President, SPAAN TECH, and Suzanne Malec-McKenna. MPC staff liaisons for this committee is Josh Ellis, Vice President. 

Alaina Harkness

Amrou Atassi

Andy Hesselbach
People's Gas

Andy Martin
Greeley & Hansen

Anna-Lisa Castle
Alliance of the Great Lakes

Carolyn Grieves
Baxter & Woodman 

Christopher B. Burke
Christopher B. Burke Engineering, Ltd.

Josh Ellis, MPC Staff Liaison 
Metropolitan Planning Council 

Chuck Kaiser

Cristina Negri

Edith Makra
Metropolitan Mayors Caucus

Ellen Carnahan

Genese Leach 
Grand Victoria Foundation

James E. Mann 

Jeremy Orr
Natural Resources Defense Council

Jyotsna Jagai
University of Illinois at Chicago

Manju Sharma, Co-Chair

Margaret Schneemann
Chicago Metropolitan Agency for Planning

Mike Thomas

Moira Zellner
University of Illinois at Chicago

Nora Beck
Chicago Metropolitan Agency for Planning

Paul May
Northwest Suburban Municipal JAWA

Peter Mulvaney

Sabina Shaikh
University of Chicago

Suzanne Malec-McKenna, Co-Chair

Moira Zellner
University of Illinois at Chicago 

Effective Government  

Hill Hammock

Alana Ward Robinson

Effective government is necessary for every individual to thrive. Effective is more than a measure of efficiency, but also entails accountability, innovation and openness to being shaped by active, informed residents. Moreover, government structures are not monoliths, but must adapt and change to meet the needs of society, the economy and our ecosystems.

MPC’s Effective Government program enhances the capacity of local units of government throughout Chicagoland to operate effectively, innovate and evolve. MPC’s work includes researching and communicating the ramifications of Illinois’ overwhelming number of government bodies and advocating for government streamlining measures that won’t compromise services for residents.

MPC’s Effective Government Committee supports MPC staff with information, expertise, guidance, and professional connections to achieve the goals of this program.

 This committee is co-chaired by Hill Hammock, Chair of the Cook County Health Board, and Alana Ward Robinson, President, Robinson Group Consulting, Inc. MPC staff liaisons for this committee is Josh Ellis, Vice President. 

Bill Balling

Christina Burns
Village of Oswego

Eileen Chin
R.M. Chin & Associates, Inc.

Chris Conley 
Two Bit Ventures, LLC

Mayor Rodney Craig
Village of Hanover Park

Bob Dean
Center for Neighborhood Technology 

Josh Ellis, MPC Staff Liaison 
Metropolitan Planning Council 

Robert V. Fitzsimmons, II 
Next Generation Public Affairs, Inc.

Mark Fowler
Northwest Municipal Conference

Shubhra Govind
Village of Hanover Park

Hill Hammock, Co-Chair 
Cook County Health Board

Lindsay Hollander
Chicago Metropolitan Agency for Planning

Lindsay Hollander
Chicago Metropolitan Agency for Planning

Bo Kemp 
Faegre Baker Daniels

Martha Linsley
Morgan Stanley

Joseph Mancino

Michael Pagano
University of Illinois at Chicago, CUPPA

Heather Parish
Pierce Family Foundation

Mayor Sergio Rodriguez
Village of Summit

David Silverman
Ancel Glink

Regan Stockstell
Village of Richton Park

Sabina Shaikh
University of Chicago

Alana Ward Robinson, Co-Chair 
Robinson Group Consulting, Inc.

Paula Wolff 
Illinois Justice Project 

This page can be found online at

Metropolitan Planning Council 140 S. Dearborn St.
Suite 1400
Chicago, Ill. 60603
312 922 5616

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For more than 80 years, the Metropolitan Planning Council (MPC) has made the Chicago region a better place to live and work by partnering with businesses, communities and governments to address the area's toughest planning and development challenges. MPC works to solve today's urgent problems while consistently thinking ahead to prepare the region for the needs of tomorrow. Read more about our work »

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