The senior staff at APA oversees its functional areas and leads the day-to-day activities of departments to carry out the vision of APA's dedicated volunteer leaders.


Joel Albizo
Chief Executive Officer, APA and AICP

Joel Albizo, FASAE, CAE

The Chief Executive Officer plays a pivotal role in facilitating strategic planning and aligning the organization’s resources and activities with its vision and goals. The CEO builds relationships and influence with partners, advances the association's objectives and policies; facilitates a culture of excellence, innovation, and member service; and leads an exemplary volunteer management environment.

Ann Simms
Chief Operating Officer and Chief Financial Officer, APA and AICP

Ann Simms

The COO/CFO is responsible for Membership, Accounting, Information Technology, Human Resources, and Administration. Ann also serves as Assistant Secretary-Treasurer of the APA Board of Directors, representing the board primarily on financial matters.

Harriet Bogdanowicz
Chief Communications Officer

Harriet Bogdanowicz

The CCO leads the development and implementation of integrated communication and marketing strategies for the association. Harriet oversees Marketing, Communications, Publishing, Policy, social media, and library and taxonomy initiatives.

Mark Ferguson
Chief Information Officer

Mark Ferguson

The CIO guides APA's organization-wide information technology program. Mark leads the planning and implementation of enterprise information systems that support operations and achieve efficiencies, and oversees the IT department.

Professional Practice Director

Felicia Braunstein

The Professional Practice Director is responsible for the programs of APA's professional institute, the American Institute of Certified Planners. Felicia oversees the AICP certification exam, Certification Maintenance program, AICP Candidate Pilot Program, Fellows of AICP, and the Community Assistance Program.

Headshot photo of APA staff member Petra Hurtado, PhD
Research Director

Petra Hurtado, PhD

The Research Director 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.

Education Director

Kimberley Jacques

The Education Director 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.

Jason Jordan
Policy Director

Jason Jordan

The Policy Director is responsible for government affairs, advocacy, and policy efforts of the association. This includes development of APA policy guides; representation of APA with congressional offices, federal agencies, and partner organizations; and management of advocacy networks and campaigns. Jason also provides strategic guidance to volunteer leaders on policy matters at the national, state, and local levels.

Marketing Director

Liz Lang

The Marketing Director is responsible for leading strategic promotional efforts for APA and its professional institute, AICP. Liz oversees the dissemination of all APA broadcast email, and the effective implementation of marketing plans that highlight APA products, services, and events, and the value of certification.

Development Director

Christine Ott

The Development Director is responsible for the administration of the APA Foundation in concert with the APA Foundation Board. Christine is also responsible for the strategic development of initiatives, partnerships, and fundraising for APA and the Foundation.

Karl F. Schmidt
Membership Director

Karl F. Schmidt

The Membership Director is responsible for customer service, billing, and payment processing for services provided by APA and APA's Professional Institute, AICP.

Jeff Soule, FAICP
International Director

Jeff Soule, FAICP

The International Director is responsible for the international program, which serves APA members in over 80 countries and governments through funded, capacity-building efforts from China to Latin America.

Mike Welch
Leadership Director

Mike Welch

The Leadership Director supports the work of the organization's elected leaders, including the APA Board of Directors, AICP Commission, Chapter Presidents Council, Divisions Council, Student Representatives Council, and many committees and task forces. Mike also oversees program development and administrative services to chapters, divisions, and student organizations.

Meetings Director

Eva Wilczek

The Meetings Director is responsible for strategically coordinating with staff, members, and others on the planning, implementation, and assessment of all aspects of the National Planning Conference and all other association meetings. Eva also oversees registration services for many of APA's live and virtual events and many chapter conferences.