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CNU Illinois is pleased to announce an esteemed jury composed of thought-leasders in New Urbanism.  Each jury member brings a wealth of experience and career accomplishments to evaulating the entries.  Below are your 2016 Charter Awards Jury Members:


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Brenda Kiesgen

Brenda Kiesgen is a Project Manager and Designer at site design group, ltd. (site) with a passion for social spaces that integrally fit into the contextual urban fabric. Her skills in site analysis, communication, and aesthetic considerations within the collaborative design process produce unique, vivid spaces which culminate in the creation of enduring solutions. Projects include collaborations between architects, city agencies, and community residents. Brenda’s education as an architect allows her to envision the creation of spaces through the creative juxtaposition of material and form, while her research of innovative sustainable technologies lay the foundation of an integrated site development process.

John H Paige


John H Paige, AICP, is the President of Urban Planning Services, Inc., a registered City Planning firm in the State of Illinois.  He just finished a 12 year term as Administrator of the Illinois Chapter of the American Planning Association.  Mr. Paige’s career in the planning profession has included all levels of government and the private sector. 


He served twenty-nine years with the Chicago based Northeastern Illinois Planning Commission (NIPC) where he was the Planning Director from 1984 to 2003. Prior to NIPC, Mr. Paige held positions in local government, as a senior planner with the City of Hartford Connecticut, and in state government, as an engineer with the Connecticut Department of Transportation.  Also, currently Mr. Paige is a Docent with the Chicago Architecture Foundation (Class of 2009) giving downtown and neighborhood architecture tours, and coordinating tour development for the 606/Bloomingdale Trail. Paige is also a member of The Congress for New Urbanism.   


Paige received both a Bachelors (1971) and a Masters (1973) degree from Purdue University in the fields of Civil Engineering, Transportation Planning, and Public Policy.  

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Heather Smith


As Senior Program Officer at The Field Foundation of Illinois, Heather Smith reviews and evaluates grant requests from Chicago area not-for-profit organizations. In addition to conducting site visits with applicants and making funding recommendations, Heather also manages the foundation’s internship program. Prior to Field, Heather served as the Planning Director for the Congress for the New Urbanism and coordinated the Metropolis Plan activities for Chicago Metropolis 2020.  She also received an American Planning Association fellowship to advance sustainable development and planning in the United States Senate.


Heather is a member of Chicago Women in Philanthropy and the American Planning Association and serves on the Chicago Metropolitan Agency for Planning Land Use Committee. Heather is also an adjunct faculty member in DePaul University’s Geography Department and holds a master’s degree in urban planning from Columbia University and a bachelor’s degree in Urban Studies and Japanese from Macalester College. Heather enjoys biking, sailing, and traveling in her spare time.

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