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Francesca PatricoloMeet Francesca Patricolo. You might recognize her from the 2019 Core Value Awards as her PedPDX: Portland’s Citywide Pedestrian Plan project was recognized as IAP2 USA’s Project of the Year and went on to win IAP2 International’s Project of the Year Award in Sydney, Australia!

Francesca first learned about IAP2 when she was serving in AmeriCorps Central Oregon after undergrad.

“I was responsible for gathering public feedback and shaping it into a plan, but I didn’t have a strategy,” Francesca said. “Fortunately, I found the IAP2 Spectrum of Public Participation online and immediately used it in my work. I knew after that experience that public participation was my calling in life.”

December 11, 2019   Posted in Featured

December Webinar – Inclusion. Register today!


In the field of Public Participation, you often hear the expression, “Meet people where they are.” Sometimes, that means you have to understand where they’ve been. That is never more true when engaging with Indigenous people.

On December 10, at 11am Pacific time (2pm Eastern), join us for the monthly Learning Webinar, as Nadine St-Louis of Sacred Fire Productions presents Understanding History, Territory and Indigenous Identity for Inclusion … a step towards reconciliation. Engaging ethically with Indigenous communities is about moving forward within a respectful, egalitarian and participatory process. This webinar is a conversation looking at how to shift social structures of “us” and “them”, looking at history as narrative and reclaiming Indigenous voices in colonial spaces. 

While this webinar is based on Canadian experiences, there are applications to the USA and other countries.  In public participation we strive to include all voices. What do we need to think about when we want to be truly inclusive?  Do you know?

Register here, and remember the two-stage process: follow the link in your confirmation email to receive your login information.

We look forward to your joining us on December 10!

December 6, 2019   Posted in Webinars

WEBINAR REWIND – November – Charlotte Encore: “Walk it Like You Talk It – Youth Empowerment and Racial Equity”

Our first “Charlotte Encore” – a presentation from the previous IAP2 North American Conference that attendees told us should be shared via webinar – brought back the Thursday lunch keynote speakers. Liz Styron and Kaleia Martin of YES! Youth Empowered Solutions challenged us to consider the intersection of racial bias and marginalizing young people. (Read more) Liz and Kaleia show that, even if everything else is equal or a non-white person has an advantage, race puts that person at a demonstrable disadvantage. Race, they’ve learned, is the number-one deciding factor in health and life outcomes.

WEBINAR REWIND: October 2019 – IAP2 Projects of the Year

Two projects, which focused on equalizing conditions for everyone, were featured in the October learning webinar. The Portland (OR) Bureau of Transportation (PBOT) and the Canadian Partnership Against Cancer were named IAP2 Projects of the Year for the USA and Canada, respectively, at the 2019 IAP2 Core Values Awards. 

Member Profile: Dan Adams

Dan AdamsExecutive Director, The Langdon Group

Recipient, 2019 IAP2 USA Greater Good Award

Dan Adams is with the The Langdon Group and was nominated for his many outstanding qualities as an innovator and collaborator. Dan focuses on engagement by encouraging his staff to visit and build relationships with stakeholders. He has brought IAP2 and its core values into his work ethic and team. His blends the disciplines of alternative dispute resolution and public participation to help people see other points of view. 

“I look at public involvement from a systemic approach. One thing I learned from working in ADR is that most of the problems I saw were organizational conflicts. The parties would come to mediation trying to solve situational issues, but not addressing the larger systemic issue.

To help me learn how to think systemically and work from that perspective, I earned a master’s degree in organizational behaviour from BYU.  I have learned through tough experience that you really have to tackle what I call the ‘5Ps’ when you are asked to do public involvement.”

Member Profile: Isis Lopez

Isis LopezIf you drive through the streets of Austin, you will see juxtaposed living situations—model luxury homes next to homes that are older and in need of maintenance. When the Austin Code Department was initiated, the message for our office was that of awareness – “call Austin 311 to report violations.” But our team realized that we were treating the symptoms and not addressing possible solutions or preventing the violations.

In 2018, we shifted our mindset from “report your neighbor” to learning more about the codes and empowering individuals with resources and information to not only avoid violations but live in a safer environment, which is the end-goal for the department.

Our department is largely complaint-driven. We get a complaint, and our inspector goes out to investigate. We decided to become more pro-active, by creating a “heat map” to see the areas with a high incidence of complaints, and then we focus our outreach on the “hottest” areas.

Training in Transition

As of January 1, 2020, responsibility for IAP2 training will transfer from the Federation to the individual affiliates. It’s part of a revision of the relationship between the worldwide body and the affiliates, with the Federation now known as “International” (yes, the International Association for Public Participation, International) and the affiliates becoming “Regions”. The regions — such as USA. Canada, Australasia, etc. — will be responsible for licensing, administering and in some cases hosting training. 

In a nutshell, what it means for trainers is:

Message from the Executive Manager

Gail MadziarAs your new Executive Manager, it has been a pleasure these past few weeks getting to know the IAP2 USA Board and members. It’s clear you are all a very dedicated group. We have been busy at the IAP2 virtual office as well and you will notice some changes as we move forward in our organizational growth.

IAP2 board elections continue through December 11 with a great slate of candidates. Be sure to vote. Watch for more opportunities to connect and serve your association in the coming months. The IAP2 USA board is reaching out for committee volunteers including participants for a new diversity and inclusion committee, ambassadors, and chapter members. We’re asking your opinions about our programs and processes in a membership survey open through December 11. Your input is important and will guide the direction of the IAP2 USA strategic planning process which begins in 2020. 

Along with the March 9-13, 2020 Skills Symposium in Sacramento, you’ll find a second opportunity to attend a 2020 Skills Symposium in Atlanta this fall. The 2020 IAP2 North American Conference is in Banff in Alberta, Canada is September 9- 11, 2020. Mark your calendars!

I look forward to working with you and hearing your input and ideas. Please contact me any time at gail[at]

Mae West Was Right

Author: Catherine Smith, CP3

“Too much of a good thing can be wonderful.” – Mae West.

Too much good—is that even possible? I don’t think so. There’s always room for doing more good in our world, and especially at IAP2 USA where we teach people what good decisions made together means.

To do more good this year, we’ve launched our first annual giving campaign, funding scholarships for practitioners of all types. Our goal is to broaden our organizational reach by defraying the cost of our learning events for a range of deserving individuals. These funds will help them access our webinars, taster series, symposia, courses, chapter events, and annual conferences. 

IAP2 USA Core Values Award winners take International Honors!

3 winning IAP2 USA Projects receive International Awards!

All three “national” award winners at the 2019 IAP2 USA Core Values Awards have just received top honors on the International stage, as announced at the recent IAP2 Australasian Conference.

Congratulations to:

The City of Portland (OR) Transportation Bureau for “PedPDX: Portland’s Citywide Transportation Plan”, which tied with the City of Brisbane, Australia, for Project of the Year. Watch their Core Values Awards video here. Portland’s project was featured in the October learning webinar: IAP2 USA members may watch the webinar here.

The City of Boulder (CO) for “Creating a Meaningful and Inclusive P2 Culture”. Boulder leaders had felt for a long time that they were being inclusive in their planning and policy-making, but when they started hearing that it could be a lot better, they set out to engage the public on how to engage the public. The result earned Boulder the Organization of the Year Award Internationally, as well as in the USA. Watch their Core Values Awards video here.

PRR Inc. of Seattle launched a comprehensive study into the best ways to assess how well a public participation process is working. Its “Measuring Public Involvement: an easy-to-use toolkit” received the award for Research Project of the Year. Watch their Core Values Awards video here.

You can read about all the Core Values Award winners from around the world in the annual IAP2 Showcase.

The IAP2 Core Values Awards recognize excellence in the public engagement field and also serve as a way for other P2 practitioners to learn best practices and elevate their own “game”. Applications for the 2020 IAP2 USA Core Values Awards will be received starting in February: watch for the announcement of the opening of the application period in the New Year.