Heart of Florida Section
Message from the Section Chair
As the year draws to a close and we all get busy with holiday preparations and making plans for the New Year, I would like to wish each of you a Merry Christmas and all the best for 2024.
My time serving you as Chair of APA Florida Heart of Florida Section has been an absolute pleasure. I am grateful for the section committee; Parag Agrawal, Erika Tulloch, Todd Miller and Hetty Harmon. Each of them stepped up to serve our section, have gone beyond the “job description” of their positions and have willingly volunteered their time to bring our membership closer together and make all of our events and gatherings special.
Additionally, several of you have graciously helped lead some of our sub-committees to plan and deliver many of our programs such as planning commission training, legislative affairs, disc golf, and some upcoming events in 2024. I know if I try to cover all the names and events I will inadvertently leave someone or something out, but please know I am thankful for the engagement and assistance of everyone. More than you know! It was a true team effort, and my appreciation is huge!
Going forward I plan to continue to assist the committee as needed as past chair, ensuring a smooth transition to pass the torch to Parag Agrawal who will take on the role of chair for the next two years. I look forward to seeing everyone soon and will extend an offer for anyone to feel free to reach out anytime if I can be of assistance to you.
Laura Herrscher, AICP, CPM
2024-25 HOF Executive Committee
Earlier this year there was a call for nominations and those interested in serving on the HOF Executive Committee. As our small section reunited after the pandemic, we were able to fill the vacant committee seats with volunteers. Since each of these volunteers have not completed a full two-year term, they were kind enough to commit to continuing to serve in their roles for the next two years. No other nominations for the positions of Secretary or Treasurer were received.
Heart of Florida bylaws state that the Vice Chair will move into the Chair position without further nomination or vote/election. As a result the position of Vice Chair was the only vacancy to fill. We received just one nomination for the Vice Chair position, so no formal election was required.
Congratulations to Julie Womble who will be the new Vice Chair! We are all looking forward to Julie’s input for the committee.
Beginning in January, your HOF leadership team will be:
Chair – Parag Agrawal, AICP
Vice Chair – Julie Womble
Treasurer – Todd Miller, AICP
Secretary – Erika Tulloch
Past Chair – Laura Lockwood-Herrscher, AICP
Additionally, Hetty Harmon, AICP will continue to support the section as Professional Development Officer.
2024 Mock Planning Commission
Come enjoy an afternoon of learning and networking in an informal “Mock” Planning Commission Meeting setting, where local land use planning officials and experts will go through recent local land use cases, highlighting procedural requirements, legal and ethical considerations and best practices in the field.
There are two opportunities to participate in our Mock Planning Commission events on March 22 in Polk County and April 12 in Highlands County.
This event is free! Register for the 2024 Mock Planning Commission today by clicking the link below and filling out the form!
2023 HOF Annual Meeting
The APA Florida Heart of Florida Section held its 2023 Annual Meeting and Awards Ceremony on May 11 at the Winter Haven Garden Club.
The Section Committee expressed a warm “thank you” to chapter President Whit Blanton, FAICP, for attending and participating in our panel of keynote speakers, with Diane Quigley, AICP (Stantec) and Sheila McNamara (CFRPC).