Pre-Conference Sessions

Sunday, September 15

Experts will provide training in an interactive setting and share their knowledge in their fields of expertise.


Incorporating Next Generation Technology Into The Comprehensive Planning Workflow.  Hands-On Technical Workshop With Arcgis Urban  CM | 6.0

9:00 am - 3:30 pm | Santa Cruz

Additional $90 fee applies. Attendance limited to 12 participants. Lunch included.

Around the world, organizations use the geographic information system (GIS) to visualize the built environment, make smarter plans, engage stakeholders, and foster vibrant communities. Government leaders, partners, and citizens increasingly expect engaging online maps of their communities that convey planning information in an easy-to-understand way. Innovative cities are starting to utilize 3D mapping of zoning and plausible future conditions to effectively communicate effectively to non-experts through a visual representation of what can be developed. 

Attend this workshop for an overview of ArcGIS Urban, a modeling and planning system to orchestrate urban development. Use ArcGIS Urbans native 3D capabilities to understand the development potential for any parcel within a planning study area; Explore the use of Urbans plan authoring tools to create and evaluate multiple alternatives or scenarios, using metrics and performance indicators as design feedback. Use the same 3D scenes to engage with Plan and Project influencers and decision-makers. All of this informs an evaluation of the capacity for additional urban growth, locations likely to support this growth, and the potential impacts of urban policy choices and market forces.

Please Note:

Training Session Participants will need to bring their own Wi-Fi capable laptop running either Microsoft Edge, Google Chrome, or the latest version of the Safari web browser. 

Brooks Patrick | Account Executive / ArcGIS Urban
Esri | 380 New York St. Redlands, CA 92373 |

Brooks Patrick is a Global Business Development Manager for Smart Cities at Esri helping customers and partners, across local government and private sectors, understand and implement Esri software and solutions. Brooks leads a cross-sector team responsible for ArcGIS Urban, a geospatially enabled system for cities and planning organizations to orchestrate urban development. 

Robert Kain | Geospatial Services Business Leader 
PlaceWorks | 3 MacArthur Place, Suite 1100 | Santa Ana, CA 92707 |

Robert Kain is the Geospatial Services Business Lead at PlaceWorks, has over 20 years of planning experience, including 20+ years of municipal planning and geospatial analysis experience, leads a team of highly qualified GIS experts in the development of GreenScore PlaceWorks proprietary suite of GIS tools and analysis methodologies for measuring and evaluating the sustainability of the built environment.


Effective Leadership Skills for Planning Professionals  CM | 6.5

9:00 am 4:00 pm | Santa Rosa Room

Additional $90 fee applies. Attendance limited. Lunch included.

Learn skills and strategies for effective leadership and training to take your leadership abilities to the next level through this intensive and interactive training session.  Learn from colleagues with proven records of leadership in planning practice in the public and private sectors. The trainers use a collaborative team approach to guide you through a day of inquiry, dialogue, introspection, and group exercises that focus on key leadership skills, practices, and challenges.  You will leave this session with new leadership tools and insight to inspire your colleagues, team members, and others, and techniques for more effective outcomes in your planning practice. This all-day training will provide:

  • Understanding of the difference between leadership and management

  • Leadership and team-building strategies to manage and motivate individuals and teams

  • Communication skills and effective digital and media communication

  • Strategies for leading and managing in political environments

  • Tools and strategies for practicing inclusion in diverse environments

  • Ways to manage conflict and build consensus

  • An open forum for feedback and sharing leadership experiences and best practices.

Participants will receive a pre-conference survey to assess their key interests and expectations for this workshop. 

Susan Harden, FAICP | Planning Consultant

Susan J. Harden, FAICP, CNU-A, LEED AP, is the owner of a recently established small business, Susan Jackson Harden, Inc. providing expertise in urban planning, community engagement, and public facilitation services. Clients include cities, counties, and other public agencies, along with private firms and non-profit organizations who are involved in changing and improving the built, social, and natural environments. Susan J. Harden has a broad background in community development, engagement, and planning.  For over twenty years, she has built her career around community-based planning and visioning, striving to create a network of healthier, more livable communities. She has provided planning, revitalization, and community engagement services to public clients across the country. Prior to starting her new company, Susan was National Planning Practice lead for a large engineering and planning firm and led the firms internal Urban Design Studio.  Susan was appointed to the California Planning Roundtable in 2012, an organization of experienced planning professionals whose mission is to provide a forum for prominent planners to exercise creativity and leadership. Susan is a member of the Advisory Board for the Department of Planning & Public Policy at UCI where she also teaches in the graduate program. She has been on the faculty of NeighborWorks America Training Institute for over ten years and serves on the   board of directors at Jamboree Housing, an affordable housing developer.

Jeff Lambert | Community Development  Director, City of Oxnard

Bio Coming Soon!

Richard Rojas | Community Development Director, City of Compton

Richard A. Rojas, Jr., AICP, is the Director of Community Development at the City of Compton where he oversees the Planning, Building, Successor Agency and Housing Successor Agency services. He is motivated to utilize planning to address some of our most pressing environmental and social issues of our time including climate change, pollution, transportation, and housing. Richard is an active member of the American Planning Association and served as a section board member and presenter at state and national conferences. In 2016, he developed the APA Los Angeles Leadership Program. He is also active in the Urban Land Institute. Richard has a Masters in City and Regional Planning from Cal Poly San Luis Obispo and a BA in Environmental Studies from UC Santa Barbara. In his free time, Richard enjoys the outdoors with his wife and two daughters.

Linda F. Tatum, FAICP | Director of Development Services, City of Long Beach

Linda F. Tatum, FAICP, is the Director of the City of Long Beachs Development Services Department, which provides planning, building safety, code enforcement, housing and neighborhood services to the community. Linda is a California Planning Roundtable member and serves on the APA Foundation Board of Directors; the Planners Emeritus Network, Past President of the California Planning Foundation and a member of the Planning Accreditation Board Site Visit Team. Linda is married and a proud grandmother of four boys.

Al Zelinka, AICP | City Manager, City of Riverside

Al Zelinka, FAICP, CMSM, is the City Manager for the City of Riverside the City of Arts & Innovation. His public service roles over the past decade include Assistant City Manager and Community Development Director for the City of Riverside, as well as Community Development Director and Planning Manager for the City of Fullerton, California. Prior to his municipal service career, Al was Vice President with RBF Consulting and Principal of RBF Consulting's URBAN DESIGN STUDIO. He has practiced city planning and delivered presentations or training in about 30 states (plus the District of Columbia), directed more than 150 projects and played an active role in another 150. He is the co-author of two books, SafeScape and Placemaking on a Budget, and is an Emeritus Member and Past President of the California Planning Roundtable. As Riversides City Manager, Al believes that the community and regions best days are ahead and, anything can be achieved through positive mindsets and commitments to healthy partnerships.