Susan Harden, FAICP, LEED AP, CMSM, CNU-A
Susan Jackson Harden, Inc. is a small woman-owned business providing expertise in urban planning, community engagement, and public facilitation services. Clients include cities, counties, and other public agencies, along with private firms and non-profit organizations who are involved in changing and improving the built, social, and natural environments. The firm’s emphasis is on empowering communities to have a significant and meaningful influence on their future through creative, fun, and impactful public engagement.
Susan J. Harden has a broad background in community development, engagement, and planning. For over twenty years, she has built her career around community-based planning and visioning, striving to create a network of healthier, more livable communities. She has provided planning, revitalization, and community engagement services to public clients across the country. As an educator, author, and presenter, Susan is committed to empowering communities to create positive and meaningful change.
Susan co-authored a national APA Planners Advisory Service Report entitled Placemaking On A Budget and has presented at numerous state and national conferences. She was appointed to the California Planning Roundtable in 2012, an organization of experienced planning professionals whose mission is to provide a forum for prominent planners to exercise creativity and leadership in promoting understanding of California's critical public policy issues, and recommending action. She has taught urban planning and engagement courses at CalPoly Pomona University, CalState Fullerton University Extension Education program and University California Irvine where she developed and currently teaches a Healthy Neighborhoods practicum course in the graduate planning program. She is also on the faculty of the NeighborWorksTraining Institute where she teaches several neighborhood revitalization and community engagement courses to community development professionals from around the country. Susan is a member of the Planning Accreditation Board (PAB) Site Visitor Pool where she provides professional review and evaluation of universities seeking Planning accreditation or re-accreditation. She served on the Social Equity Technical Advisory Committee for the development of ICLEI’s STAR Community Index, a community-wide sustainability rating system. Currently, Susan is also on the Board of Directors for Jamboree Housing, a non-profit affordable housing developer in California.
Prior to her eighteen-year career as an urban planning consultant, Susan volunteered with the Peace Corps in Senegal, West Africa and with the AmeriCorps National Service Program in Kansas City. Additionally, she worked for a Kansas City-based non-profit environmental organization involved in local sustainable transportation, and environmental justice and worked with the State of Arizona as a community planning specialist, providing technical planning support and assistance to rural and tribal communities.
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