APA Executive Staff

These executive staff members are the heads of departments and functional areas within APA, which has offices in Washington, D.C., and Chicago.

Paul Farmer, FAICP

Paul Farmer, FAICP

Chief Executive Officer

Paul Farmer is Chief Executive Officer of APA and AICP. He has primary responsibility for the long-term strategic direction of the association, in concert with elected leadership. He is responsible for representing the leadership of the association, its members and the interests of planning with partners and with the public. He is the prime spokesperson for APA. He is also president of the Planning Foundation.

Ann Simms

Ann Simms

Chief Operating Officer and Chief Financial Officer

Ann Simms is Chief Operating Officer and Chief Financial Officer for APA and AICP. She is responsible for Membership, Accounting, Marketing, Information Technology, Human Resources, and Administration. She also serves as Assistant Secretary-Treasurer of the APA Board of Directors, representing the board primarily on financial matters.

Mark Ferguson

Mark Ferguson

Chief Information Officer

The Chief Information Officer provides leadership and management in the development and implementation of APA's organization-wide information technology program. The CIO leads APA in planning and implementing enterprise information systems to support operations and achieve more effective and cost-beneficial IT and development operations, including APA's website.

Deene Alongi

Deene Alongi

Director of Meetings and Conferences

The Director of Meetings and Conferences has overall responsibility for the APA National Planning Conference and the Fall Leadership conference. Additionally, the conference department is responsible for numerous other APA meetings held throughout the year. The Director of Meetings and Conferences also supervises the sale of advertising in APA publications and on the APA website.

Felicia Braunstein

Felicia Braunstein

Director of Professional Practice

The Director of Professional Practice is responsible for the programs of APA's professional institute, the American Institute of Certified Planners, in the areas of education, professional development, and certification. Specific programs include the AICP certification exam, Certification Maintenance program, AICP Symposium, Fellows of AICP, Planners Training Service workshops, and the Community Assistance Program.

Monica Groh

Monica Groh

Director of Early Career Programs

The Director of Early Career Programs is currently responsible for the expansion of APA's efforts to attract, retain, and inspire the next generation of planners. This includes the redesign of the Early Career Program; enhanced communication efforts; improved collaboration with APA's chapter, division, and student components; and the development of new programming.

Jason Jordan

Jason Jordan

Director of Policy and Communications

The Policy Director is responsible for government affairs, public information, and policy efforts of the association. This includes development of APA's policy guides and statements, communication with the media, outreach to allied organizations and the public to bring visibility to APA and the planning profession. He also manages relationships with Chapters and Divisions regarding their legislative and public relations programs at the state and regional levels.

Elizabeth KnutsonElizabeth Knutson

Director of Marketing

The Director of Marketing is responsible for leading strategic marketing efforts for membership recruitment and retention for both APA and APA's professional institute, AICP. The marketing department produces Interact, APA's weekly member newsletter, and is also responsible for promoting the association's products and services, including the annual National Planning Conference.

Sylvia Lewis

Sylvia Lewis

Director of Publications and APAPlanningBooks.
com

The Director of Publications is the Editor and Publisher of Planning magazine. She oversees Planners Press as well as APA's bookstore, APAPlanningBooks.com.

David Rouse, AICPDavid Rouse, AICP

Managing Director, Research and Advisory Services

The Managing Director of Research and Advisory Services is responsible for the overall design, direction, and management of APA's research program, including sponsored research, the National Centers for Planning, the Planning Advisory Service, and other research initiatives.

Karl F. Schmidt

Karl F. Schmidt

Director of Membership

The Director of Membership is responsible for APA member services including customer service, billing, and payment processing for services provided by APA and APA's Professional Institute, AICP. Membership is also responsible for registration services for many chapter conferences, as well as the annual National Planning Conference, the fall Federal Policy and Program Briefing and web conferences.

Jeff Soule, FAICP

Jeff Soule, FAICP

Director of Outreach and International Programs

The Director of Outreach and International Programs is responsible for the outreach and partnerships through which APA's mission is advanced. One component is the international program that serves members in over 80 countries and governments through funded capacity-building efforts from China to Latin America.

Carolyn Torma

Carolyn Torma

Director of Education and Citizen Engagement

The Director of Education develops and manages the organization's education programs for practicing planners, planning commissioners, students and youth, as well as developing the program for the National Planning Conference and other initiatives.

Mike Welch

Mike Welch

Director of Leadership and Component Services

The Leadership and Component Services Department promotes and develops leadership among APA's members and supports the work of the organization's elected leaders, including the APA Board of Directors, AICP Commission, Chapter Presidents Council, Divisions Council, and Student Representatives Council. The department also provides program development and administrative services to the individual components of APA, including chapters, divisions, and student organizations.

Arlis Withers

Arlis Withers

Director of Finance

The Director of Finance provides financial leadership and management in the development and implementation of APA's organization-wide accounting and finance operations for APA, AICP, the APA Foundation, and Division Component Groups. The finance team manages internal controls and ensures accurate financial transactions for all programs and activities. In addition, the department manages all financial reporting, budgeting, audits, and tax filings.