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Current Instructors

 Core Session 1: The BIG Picture- Planning in the City - April 11, 2018
  • ian h

Ian Hegarty, AICP, Community Planner, Philadelphia City Planning Commission

Ian Hegarty is a Community Planner for the Upper North and Upper Northwest Districts with the Philadelphia City Planning Commission. Originally from New York State, he has found a welcoming home in Philadelphia. Following a stint as a Recycling Program Planner with the Streets Department, Ian joined the Planning Commission in early 2015. He led the Upper North District Plan, adopted in 2016.  Ian serves as the Board President of Summit Children’s program, a nonprofit community childcare center in his home neighborhood, Mount Airy.

  • garlen capita

Garlen Capita, Senior Associate, Urban Designer, WRT 

Garlen Capita is an Urban Designer with WRT, a Philadelphia based team of planners, urban designers, architects and landscape architects. She is currently working with a number of communities on neighborhood and district-scale revitalization efforts that include commercial corridors, mixed-income housing, parks, and open space amenities that support resident health and promote vibrant communities. Her local work includes the Hunting Park West Industrial Reuse Plan, North Central Philadelphia Choice Neighborhoods revitalization effort and the Logan Comprehensive Neighborhood Plan. In her practice, Garlen strives to support community capacity in order to address issues of equity, access, and promote a balanced approach to planning and sustainable development. She does this through a thoughtful and inclusive planning process that engages a broad constituency in planning for their future. Garlen has taught at the University of Pennsylvania Department of City and Regional Planning, served as Board President for Germantown United CDC and has recently been appointed to the City Planning Commission.

Garlen, has a BS in Landscape Architecture from Cornell University and a Masters in Urban Design from the University of California Berkeley.

Core Session 2: Zoning and Land Use - April 18


  • dojo

Donna J. Carney, Citizens Planning Institute Director, Philadelphia City Planning Commission

Donna is the founding Director of the Philadelphia Citizens Planning Institute, the education and outreach arm of the Philadelphia City Planning Commission.  She brings to this role years of project management and design experience as an architect specializing in historic preservation and sustainable design. Her goal is to guide the development of educational tools to empower communities of people within Philadelphia to learn, grow, and improve the quality of their neighborhoods.

Donna is inspired to meet so many life-long learners who love where they live all across Philadelphia!  She is a strategy designer and facilitator, aiming to engage all community stakeholders in creating a shared vision. She has developed educational and interpretive materials for municipalities (downtown façade programs), arts & historical non-profits and the National Park Service. 

Donna is a graduate of Fielding University’s Organization Management & Development program (MA), Columbia University’s Graduate School of Architecture, Planning & Preservation (MS Historic Preservation), New Jersey Institute of Technology College of Architecture & Design (MArch) and Iowa State University's College of Design (BA). She is a Certified Charrette Planner (National Charrette Institute, 2006) and a registered architect in the state of Pennsylvania. She was recognized by the Pennsylvania Chapter of the American Planning Association (APA) with its 2014 “Planning Leadership Award for Professional Planner”. Her position as Director became institutionalized within the City Planning Commission in 2015.

  • andy

 Andy Meloney, AICP, Senior Planner for Implementation, Philadelphia City Planning Commission

Andrew Meloney is the Senior Planner for Implementation at the Philadelphia City Planning Commission. Andrew joined the Planning Commission in 2008. While at PCPC he has managed plans for Walnut Hill, North 52nd Street, South 58th Street, and Station Square & 30th St Vicinity as well as the West Park and University Southwest District Plans as part of the comprehensive plan, Philadelphia 2035. He currently supervises a team of planners working to implement the recommendations of the comprehensive plan with policy, legislation, and grant writing. Prior to coming to the Planning Commission Andrew worked as a Planner and Real Estate Development Analyst at The Reinvestment Fund (TRF) and as the Mapping Unit Supervisor for the Philadelphia Department of Records.

  • judy landis

Judy Walterson, Member, West Powelton Saunders Park RCO, Spring CPI grad 

Judy Walterson has been a resident of West Powelton for the past 27 years.  She originally moved into the neighborhood to be near the faith-based community outreach work in which she was involved for 25 years, specifically children and youth programming for residents of public housing and other local neighborhoods throughout West Philadelphia.  However, Judy also discovered that she moved onto the best block in all of West Philadelphia and greatly appreciates both the long-time and newer neighbors who look out for each other and who all pitch in whenever there is an issue (or a snowstorm).  Her neighborhood is changing due to an influx of student housing and so now Judy also has experience with RCOs, zoning, and all that those entail and she is a somewhat regular attender of West Powelton/Saunders Park RCO and West Powelton Concerned Community Council neighborhood meetings.  

Judy currently works in administration at Drexel University, but her passion lies in facilitating empowering partnerships between diverse communities, most notably between urban communities and suburban volunteers, and in developing student understanding of and commitment to urban social justice issues with an emphasis on integrity and dignity in building cross-cultural relationships.  Judy has been privileged to travel to Ecuador, India, Liberia and Nigeria to participate in faith-based NGO work and has been getting to know the African diaspora community in Philadelphia through her marriage to her Nigerian husband, Ray, and their involvement in their church, Winner's Chapel International Philadelphia.  In her free time Judy enjoys walking all over Philadelphia with her husband, Ray, reading historical novels, eating dark chocolate, and playing with the laser pen with her City Kitties rescue, Teddy B.

Core Session 3: The Development Process - April 26

Unit One: The Development Process- the Private Side

  • kenweinstein

Ken Weinstein, President, Philly Office Retail

Ken is an active entrepreneur and real estate developer in the Philadelphia area. He serves as President of Philly Office Retail, which has renovated and restored more than 250 vacant and deteriorated commercial and residential units in the Philadelphia region during the past 30 years.  Philly Office Retail currently owns and manages more than 800,000 square feet of commercial space in the Philadelphia region.

Ken founded and operated Cresheim Cottage Cafe from 1996 until 2004 and now owns Trolley Car Diner, Deli and Ice Cream Shoppe in Mt. Airy since 2000 and Trolley Car Cafe in East Falls since 2010.  Ken's third restaurant, Trolley Car Station, will open at 40th and Baltimore in University City later this year.

Previously, Ken served as Chief of Staff for Philadelphia City Councilwoman Happy Fernandez from 1991-1995 and Organizer/Board Member of Valley Green Bank from 2007-2015. Ken founded the Mt. Airy Business Improvement District, the Trolley Car Teachers' Fund and the Trolley Car Table Tennis Club and continues to oversee all three. 

In 2007-2008, Ken headed Mayor Michael Nutter’s economic development transition team and was appointed by Mayors Nutter and Kenney as President of the Board of the Philadelphia Housing Development Corporation.

Ken’s mission is to revitalize neighborhoods by renovating vacant, deteriorated properties along Philadelphia’s commercial corridors. He believes that you can do well by doing good.  His newest initiative, Jumpstart Germantown, has already trained 235 aspiring developers and provided more than $7 million in loans to get them started, over the past 3 years.

Unit 2: The Development Process- the Non-Profit View 
  • stephanie wall

Stephanie Wall, Deputy Director of Community & Economic Development, People's Emergency Center

Stephanie Wall is the deputy director of community and economic development at People’s Emergency Center, a nonprofit in West Philadelphia with a mission to revitalize its surrounding neighborhoods, provide comprehensive services to homeless women and their children, and advocate for social change. PEC’s community development work focuses on transforming its section of West Philadelphia into a healthy, vibrant community through real estate development, commercial corridor revitalization, and quality of life programs. After receiving her Master’s Degree in Urban Planning from the University of Toronto, Ms. Wall moved to Philadelphia in 2006 to join PEC as its community development grants manager and later becoming the real estate project manager where she guided PEC’s residential developments from conception to construction completion. She serves on the board of Scenic Philadelphia and a mentor in the University of Toronto’s Planning Alumni Committee’s mentorship/mentee program.

Elective #1: Preparing Your Community - May 2
  • freeh headshot

Richard Freeh, Office of Sustainability

Rich Freeh is the City Energy Project Manager for the Office of Sustainability in the City of Philadelphia. In this capacity, he is responsible for leading Philadelphia's initiatives as part of the City Energy Project, which is designed to improve performance in the city’s largest privately-owned buildings. He also supports Philadelphia's climate adaptation planning efforts and co-authors the city's Greenworks ​sustainability plan updates. Prior to taking on this role, Rich administered the city's energy benchmarking program for commercial buildings.

Before working for the City, Rich worked in the public policy consulting and publishing sectors. He holds a bachelor’s degree from the University of Pittsburgh and a Master’s in City Planning from the University of Pennsylvania.

  • lynn fisher

Lynn Fisher, Community Preparedness Program Manager, Office of Emergency Management

As the Community Preparedness Program Manager, Lynn works with residents, businesses and communities to achieve a prepared and resilient Philadelphia. Lynn has redesigned the "Ready, or Not?" program offerings to include READYHome, a family preparedness workshop; READYBusiness, a workshop specifically for business owners and managers to create a continuity of operations plan with the goal of resiliency during and after disaster; and READYCommunity, a multi-engagement program to educate and empower communities to prepare and plan for all hazards, while creating a collective ownership for personal response and recovery activities.

Lynn also served as a Regional Integration Center Coordinator for Philadelphia OEM for four and a half years. She served as primary interface and point of contact for Philadelphia OEM personnel to provide critical information, updates and support during all stages of the emergency response cycle.

Prior to joining OEM, Lynn served as the Communications Technical Coordinator for the City of Midland, TX, Public Safety Communications Center. Lynn has experience working closely with first responders, city and county officials, and the public.

Before joining the field of emergency management, Lynn was a science teacher and assistant director of the Hyde School Wilderness Program in northern Maine, and dean of students for 10 years in a boarding high school. Lynn holds a Bachelor’s Degree in Outdoor Experiential Education from Appalachian State University.

  • e giardina headshot

Emma Giardina, Community Resilience Coordinator, Office of Emergency Management

As the Community Resilience Coordinator, Emma works with communities to foster a strong, resilient neighborhood - ready for any emergency. Accomplished in curriculum writing, Emma is the principal writer and researcher in the READYCommunity workbook, a comprehensive guide to community resilience planning on the block level in Philadelphia. Emma also teaches in the READY, or not? Program; preparing businesses, communities and residents to be ready and resilient in the face of disaster.

Emma has a solid background in education. Prior to joining OEM, she was a 7th and 8th grade science teacher with The School District of Philadelphia and an 8th grade science teacher in Hamilton Township, NJ. Emma spent considerable time working at environmental education centers in the eastern PA and southern NJ region. She holds a Bachelor of Arts degree in Education and a Bachelor of Science degree in Environmental Science from Stockton University.

Elective #2:  Accessing Free City Information - May 9
  • mark wheeler

Mark Wheeler, Deputy Chief Information Officer for Data and Enterprise Architecture and Geographic Information Officer (GIO), Office of Innovation and Technology


  • mattio sara

Sara Mattio, GIS Analyst, Office of Innovation and Technology

Sara Mattio is a graduate of University of Arizona (B.S.) and Oxford Brookes University (M.S.). She currently holds the position of GIS Analyst for the City of Philadelphia’s Office of Innovation and Technology (OIT) CityGeo team. Her primary focus is on developing an addressing GIS dataset for the Next Generation 911 project, an effort that aims to overhaul the existing Legacy 911 system in favor of an updated, GIS-based system. She also assists with the development of Web Applications in ArcGIS Online (AGO). 


  • haynes tim

Tim Haynes, Sr Lead GIS Analyst, Office of Innovation and Technology

Tim Haynes is a graduate of Penn State University and has spent his career as a GIS Analyst and Freelance Cartographer.  After working with Wayne & Northampton counties, Tim has settled into a role as Senior Lead GIS Analyst on the City of Philadelphia’s Office of Innovation and Technology (OIT) CityGeo team.  Throughout his career, he has worked on a variety of projects in the local government sector including tax parcel database design, addressing, data modeling and analyses, recreational mapping, and public feedback applications.  Tim is an expert in design, coding and analysis, and is involved in many GIS projects across the City including the Next Generation 911 initiative.

  • kistine carolan

Kistine Carolan, Data Services Director, Office Digital Transformation and Open Data

As part of the Office of Open Data and Digital Transformation (ODDT), Kistine Carolan oversees the open data program and manages data releases. The ODDT and CityGeo collaboratively release data from Philadelphia's City government on and explain each dataset on "Benny," the City’s metadata catalog. Join the public open data google forum and follow on Twitter @PHLInnovation to learn more.

In previous positions, Kistine has developed performance indicators and quality improvement projects for the Philadelphia Department of Public Health; evaluated KEYSPOTs digital literacy training programs; promoted policies to improve maternal and child health; and volunteered as a citizen reporter on 88.1 WPEB. She holds a Master’s of Social Service from Bryn Mawr’s School of Social Work and Social Research, with a concentration in public policy and advocacy.

Elective 3: Safe Streets & Vision Zero - May 16 
  • charlotte castle

Charlotte Castle, Vision Zero & Neighborhood Programs Coordinator, City of Philadelphia’s Office of Transportation & Infrastructure Systems (oTIS)

Charlotte is the Vision Zero & Neighborhood Programs Coordinator for the City of Philadelphia. She joined City of Philadelphia staff in July 2015. She brings a background in community development in Philadelphia through her long-term involvement with a Southwest Philly farm and through work with various Philadelphia-based non-profit organizations. Charlotte has an M.A. in Geography & Urban Studies from Temple University—a program with themes of globalization, sustainability, and social justice—and a B.A. in Studio Art, with a concentration in Africana Studies, from the College of Wooster in Wooster, Ohio.

  • kelley yemen

Kelley Yemen, Director of Complete Streets, Office of Transportation and Infrastructre

Kelley is Director of Complete Streets for the City of Philadelphia with ten years of experience focusing on multi-modal transportation. She leads the City’s Vision Zero and Complete Streets efforts. Previously, Kelley was the Pedestrian and Bicycle Coordinator for Hennepin County, MN, and before that a Pedestrian Planner and Project Manager within the Office of Bicycle and Pedestrian Programs at the NYC DOT, and an Urban Designer for A. Nelessen Associates in NJ.


  • kasim ali

Kasim Ali, P.E.

Kasim is Acting Chief Traffic Engineer for the City of Philadelphia’s Department of Streets, where he also serves as the chair for Vision Zero’s engineering sub-committee. Kasim has worked for Streets Department for over eleven years. He is a Professional Engineer and has a Masters in Science from Drexel University in Highway Engineering. 

Read about past instructors here.