Lifetime Achievement Award Brian K. Smith, FAICP

Brian’s 41-year career as a professional planner, in conjunction with his long-term involvement in APA Florida, exemplify the sustained contributions to the planning profession that this award is intended to recognize.

Brian began his career in 1970 as a Planner III for Pinellas County. Through the next several decades, he served as the assistant director of planning, the director of planning and the executive director of the Pinellas MPO. He was involved in the Penny for Pinellas initiative to fund infrastructure growth, establishment of a countywide transit system, improvements to the U.S. 19 corridor and implementation of the GIS and ITS systems. His contributions to the community planning process during those years was considerable and his leadership proved extremely valuable to the industry and the agencies, organizations and cities he served and helped in those roles.


Brian’s love for the natural environment has led him over the years to be an advocate for Florida’s trail and greenways system. Brian had a key role in the Pinellas Trail from its inception. He was a significant player in the development of the Friendship Trail and the Progress Energy Corporation extension of the Pinellas Trail. Brian is a governor appointee to the Florida Greenways and Trails Council and serves as its chairman. He also currently serves as the president of the Florida Greenways & Trails Foundation.


Brian was elected to the Fellows of the AICP for his contributions to the profession and community in 2006. For the past 8 years, Brian has chaired the APA Florida Sustainability Committee that had its origins in a 2010 chapter retreat. Under Brian’s leadership, the committee has developed and continues to expand the remarkable Livable Florida: Planning for Sustainable Communities educational efforts that we know today. These include chapter conference sessions on sustainability related topics and the development of an extensive APA Florida Livable Florida website that provides a plethora of sustainable tools for local planners on a wide variety of planning topics.


As one committee member stated, “Brian’s many efforts to ensure this one small committee succeeded in its charge provides a vivid example of how Brian’s planning efforts have effectively furthered the knowledge of sustainability planning principles in Florida.”