Sam Casella, FAICP (Nov. 5, 1944 - Feb. 18, 2014)

Sam Casella, FAICP, made major contributions to the practice of planning. With over 45 years of planning experience, Sam had a passion for planning, not only in Florida but nationally and in later years he engaged international planning issues. Sam worked in both public and private sector planning, including President of Casella and Associates from 1983 to 1996 and Principal/President at The Planning Authority, LLC beginning in 2001. Sam was a licensed Professional Planner (PP) in the State of New Jersey. Sam served as President of APA from 1993 to 1995, AICP President from 2001 to 2003 and the Editorial Advisory Board, Journal of the American Planning Association from 1997 to 2002. He was inducted into the AICP College of Fellows in 1999. As APA President Sam displayed dedication to social equity and the advancement of planning ethics. He served as “Planner in Residence” at Florida State University from 1996 to 2001, which involved teaching, directing the graduate studio program and supervising a variety of consulting projects for the Florida Planning Lab. Sam began his international planning work in 2000 with a focus on China. He served on an advisory committee to the International Association for China Planning and cooperated on a wide variety of strategic issues in China as an advisor, speaker, and consultant with ministries, universities, local governments and planning institutions.

Examples of his urban planning work include comprehensive planning, land development regulations, urban regeneration, economic development programs, tax increment financing, sustainable development practices and historic preservation. Sam displayed great communication skills and shared a keen sense of humor that many of his friends and colleagues will miss. Sam’s FAICP summary states, “Sam Casella epitomizes the practitioner who aspires to serve the public interest in every arena.”

Sam held a Bachelor’s degree in political science from Long Island University and a Master of Urban Planning degree from Hunter College. In addition to several leadership awards from APA, Sam received the Donald Sullivan Urban Leadership Award from the Department of Urban Affairs and Planning at Hunter College in 1995. Sam is survived by his wife, Xiaovun, a daughter, Chloe House and two sons, Sam H. Casella and Alex Casella.