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Northern Section January 2023 Board Retreat Report

by Libby Tyler, FAICP, Director-Elect, March 14, 2023

On Saturday, January 28th, Northern Section Board members met for our annual retreat in the Oakland offices of Environmental Science Associates. The theme of the retreat was “APA 2.0: A Year of Action and Engagement.”

Section Director Michael Cass kicked off the retreat with introductions, followed by a spotlight on the Northern News from recently appointed Editor Andrew Trippel, AICP, along with Associate Editors Richard Davis, AICP Candidate, and Silvia Sulis, AICP. Northern News has moved to a bi-monthly, online publication format and will continue popular features such as Meet a Local Planner, Who’s Where, and Where in the World, along with featured articles, announcements, and the news round-up.

Photo of the Northern Section, APA California, 2023 Board of Directors

Going forward, each issue will be consolidated into a PDF and archived on the Northern Section website. This will give our members and the public a digital archive that dates back to 1981. Trippel also announced a new partnership with Island Press, a non-profit publisher focused on sustainability and the environment, to cross-promote areas of interest between the readerships. The Northern News team continues to encourage contributions from the entire section!

Board members broke out twice into their affiliated “POD” groups to discuss successes and lessons learned from the past year’s events and to plan for 2023. The PODs were formed as a way for Board members to work together in teams to promote collaboration and communication within the Board. The PODs include Executive, Communications, Administrative, Events, Professional Development, and Membership Engagement. The Communications and Professional Development PODs were spotlighted, and their members shared their successes in working together during the past year.

In the afternoon, the Board came back together to play a planning version of “Never Have I Ever” that was invented and hosted by Craciun. Many of these outrageous testimonials centered around public hearings and various encounters with the public – just let your imagination go wild!

The rest of our retreat was spent focusing on a revisit of the 2021-2022 Section Initiatives and an open discussion of the “APA 2.0: A Year of Action and Engagement”. The meeting ended with a challenge from Director-Elect Libby Tyler, FAICP, for every Board member to identify a mascot or motto to help carry them through their Year of Action and Engagement. The selected mascots were wide-ranging, from Bob the Builder to Beyonce to Bullwinkle. The selected mottos included “Be in It to Win It”, “Show Up and Be Kind”, and “Excellence, Not Perfection.” What will your mascot and motto be for your Northern Section Year of Action and Engagement?

The Board is grateful to our hosts, Environmental Science Associates, and everyone who made our 2023 retreat a success. Stay tuned for updates to the Section Initiatives and take time to determine how you can best contribute in the coming year!

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