The EDI Committee is proud to bring you the Planner to Leader series, featuring interviews with a diverse group of planners who now hold leadership positions in various organizations throughout the state of Florida. Follow the series to gain insights on how to make the transition in your career.


Episode 1: Lessons from Leaders

What are some lessons you've learned from leaders?

This interview is with John Cooper, Planning and Zoning Director with the City of Rockledge, who talks about what he has learned from leaders and how they have impacted his career.

Key topics: lessons from leaders; impacts from leaders; introduction to the video series

John W. Cooper has more than 15 years of experience in local government serving at a number of levels within land development and currently serves as the Planning Director for the City of Rockledge.  Before serving in his current position, John worked in land development for Fairfax County, Virginia.  He holds degrees in Business Administration and Business Management from Strayer University. John serves as the Section Vice Chairman for APA Florida Treasure Coast Section and sits on the APA Floirda Equity, Diversity, and Inclusion Committee.

Episode 2: Career Journey

What is the best career advice you have received?

Episode 2 of the Planner to Leader Series features Lori Cox, a Senior Planner at RK&K. In this episode, Lori talks about her career journey and how she became interested in planning. She also mentions the best career advice she has received.

Key topics: career advice; career journey; planning as a profession

Lori Cox, AICP, has more than 20 years of experience working in the private and public sectors in transportation, environmental, economic, and community planning. Lori earned her Master of Urban & Regional Planning (2006) from Florida State University. Lori also earned her Health and Life Coach certification in 2020 & is dedicated to supporting the personal and professional resiliency of women navigating the seasons and demands of life. Lori also currently serves on the APA Florida Equity, Diversity, & Inclusion Committee, the APA Florida Orlando Metro Section (OMS) Women & Planning Group, & serves on the WTS Central Florida Chapter’s Communications Committee.