Sun Coast 2018 Annual Awards Reception and Ethics Event

2014 Sun Coast Section Annual Awards Reception

The time has come to celebrate the accomplishments of our Section!

The Sun Coast Section invites you to attend the Annual Awards Reception to celebrate local excellence in planning! Purchase of a ticket will also include admission to our pre-reception Ethics CM event.

3:45 PM – 4:00 PM: Registration

4:00 PM – 5:30: “Best Practices for Professional Relationship Building – Strategies, Techniques and Ethics for Planners” (1.5 CM Ethics Pending – Details Below)

5:30 PM – 8:00 PM: Annual Awards Reception

Awards ceremony will begin at approximately 6:00 PM. Join us to celebrate the accomplishments of the Section! This year, we are honoring:

  • Distinguished Service
  • Planner of the Year
  • Public Outreach and Engagement Award
  • Best Plan, Report or Study
  • Placemaking or Design Award
  • Adaptive Reuse or Redevelopment Award
  • Student Project Award

Heavy hors d’oeuvres and one free drink ticket included with purchase. Annual Awards Reception generously sponsored by Mark S. Bentley, Esq., B.C.S., AICP and Bang the Table

Sun Coast Annual Awards Reception Sponsored by Mark S. Bentley, Esq., B.C.S., AICP with Johnson Pope Counselors at Law and Bang the Table.


“Best Practices for Professional Relationship Building – Strategies, Techniques and Ethics for Planners”
1.5 CM Pending
Pre-Reception Event Details

Along with technical skills, developing and maintaining strong professional relationships is critical to accomplish projects and advance your planning career. This session will feature presentations on strategies to create and strengthen these relationships both in person and online, as well as how to navigate more complex issues and relationship scenarios that may arise as you progress in your planning career. Best practices and ethical issues in social media will also be covered. Following the presentations, a panel of local planning leaders will discuss their experience with professional relationships, strategies for success, and guidance from the AICP Code of Ethics.

Featured Speakers:

  • Tara Poulton, Director of Special Projects, Desoto County and FPRA Central West Coast Chapter President
  • Amy Elmore, M.S., Branch Communications Coordinator, Pasco County Development Services

Panel Discussion:

  • Laura Everitt, AICP, Transit and Rail Planning Manager, VHB and APA Florida President-Elect
  • Melissa Zornitta, AICP, Executive Director, Hillsborough County City-County Planning Commission and APA Florida Immediate Past President
  • Clarence Eng, FAICP, Smart Mobility and Transit/TOD Practice Leader, Kimley Horn
  • Panel moderated by Troy Salisbury, AICP, Senior Competitive Sites Coordinator/Analyst, Hillsborough County and Section Professional Development Officer

1.5 CM Ethics Pending


Past Winners:


  • Award of Excellence: City of Clearwater – U.S. 19 Zoning District and Design Guidelines
  • Planner of the Year: Jay Collins, AICP
  • Distinguished Service: Mark Bentley, PA, AICP
  • Distinguished Service: Lorraine Duffy-Suarez, AICP


  • Award of Excellence: Hillsborough River Interlocal Planning Board
  • Planner of the Year: Catherine Hartley, AICP, CNU-a
  • Distinguished Service Award: Bob Bray


  • **See 2016 awards.**
  • Award of Excellence – Urbanism on Tap
  • Planner of the Year – Karen Kress, AICP, LCI
  • Distinguished Service – Mark Sharpe
  • Distinguished Plan: InVision Tampa
  • Distinguished Project: Nathan Benderson Park
  • Planning Advocacy: The Green Artery
  • Planning Advocacy: Laurel Park Overlay District, Sarasota
  • Planner of the Year: Stephen L. Benson, AICP, CNU-a
  • Distinguished Service: Robin R. Jones
  • Distinguished Project: Pinellas County Transit Alternatives Analysis
  • Planning Advocate of the Year: Jim Shirk, P.E.
  • Distinguished Service: Michael Taylor, AICP
  • Distinguished Plan: Walk/Bike Plan, City of Tampa
  • Distinguished Service: Joe Bell, AICP
  • Distinguished Project: Tampa Bay Mitigation Bank
  • Planner of the Year: Richard Gehring, AICP
  • Distinguished Service: David Healey, AICP
  • Distinguished Project: Skycrest Roundabout Corridor, City of Clearwater
  • Distinguished Plan: TBARTA Regional Transportation Master Plan
  • Planner of the Year: Mark Bentley, Esq., AICP
  • Distinguished Service: Robert B. Hunter, FAICP