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3/9/21 - APA-IL Coffee Talk with MDRN Webcast Speakers

Updated: Jan 7, 2022

Join the APA-IL for a SPECIAL midday hour-o-networking! Grab a cup-o-joe and come have a casual conversation with the speakers from the 3/5/21 Suburban Design in the New Era national webcast. No presentations, no powerpoint, just talk!

If you missed the original webcast:


Lesley Roth, AIA, AICP, Lamar Johnson Collaborative

In her 20-year career, Lesley’s professional training and practice include domestic and international architecture and urban design experience with an emphasis on public engagement, liveable communities and sustainable design. Lesley is a Principal at Lamar Johnson Collaborative.

Brandon Svec, Director of Market Analytics at the CoStar Group

Brandon Svec is a Director and Market Economist with CoStar Group, where he leads the firm’s research and analysis on Midwestern multifamily, office, logistics, and retail markets.

Ralph Zucker, President, Somerset Development Ralph Zucker is President of Somerset Development, one of the New York region’s pioneers of New Urbanism and TND development. Zucker is perhaps best known for Bell Works, the two-million-square-foot redevelopment of the former Bell Labs property in Holmdel, N.J., and its transformation into a “metroburb,”or blossoming downtown-style ecosystem of technology, office, retail, dining and hospitality. Somerset is redeveloping The Ameritech Center in Hoffman Estates, Illinois, originally built as the former AT&T research facility, into Bell Works Chicagoland (brochure).

Bring your questions and join fellow APA-IL members for a virtual hour of conversation and camaraderie.

DATE: Tuesday, March 9, 2021

TIME: 11:00 AM - 12:00 PM

Not an APA or APA-IL member? Please consider becoming an APA-IL Chapter-Only member for just $50/year. Click here for more info!


Coffee Talk FAQ

What can I expect during Coffee Talk?

Each Coffee Talk meets for 1 hour. After a short introduction from each member, we welcome any questions from the group, for the group. Someone from the APA-IL Membership Committee will be moderating the discussion. Coffee Talks are a great way to network and stay on top of the latest trends. Discussion topics can be emailed to ahead of time.

Who participates?

APA-IL's virtual networking has included members that are students, faculty, municipal planners, plan commissioners, consultants, and those in the not-for-profit sector from Collinsville, IL to Kenosha, WI. APA-IL membership is required.

What do participants talk about?

Unless we have a Coffee Talk "special" with a predetermined topic, we welcome questions or topics from the group participating. Topics have ranged from outdoor eating spaces, capstone projects, news items, books, plan commission issues and more!.

Are there topics that should not be brought up during Coffee Talks and other APA-IL virtual networking sessions?

We ask that participants avoid the following during the session:

  • Presentations

  • Sales Pitches

  • Resume or LinkedIn reviews

  • Marketing businesses, communities or firms

  • Using the group as an ad hoc focus group for a product

  • Any violation of Zoom Community Standards

The APA-IL moderators may mute, remove, or ask that a participant stop talking at any time if they feel that a participant is taking away from the conversation.

We are all Zoom pros by now but here are a few reminders or tips for joining if you're new to virtual networking:

  • Please keep yourself muted unless you're speaking

  • You are welcome to have your camera on or off. We'd love to see your face but understand that it isn't always possible.

  • Since APA-IL's online networking is casual, you are welcome to have distractions like pets, children, etc. on screen - just remember that mute button!

  • Step up or step back.

  • Be a good listener.

  • No screenshots.

  • APA-IL will not share your contact information. If you would like to connect with another participant, please use the Zoom Chat to connect with them.

We hope the APA-IL can foster a sense of togetherness, camaraderie and understanding during networking sessions.


Please note, participants must be signed-in into Zoom in order to participate. Use your personal password to sign-in, not the meeting password. This measure is in place to help deter zoombombing. Thanks!


APA-IL's virtual networking events bring together members who don’t already know each other, helps to widen professional circles and build bonds with new people despite the lack of face-to-face events. Conversations can include hot topics, struggles, successes, solutions, and more!


Planners of Color Happy Hour

Thursday, 3/18/21

5:30 PM - 6:30 PM

The APA-IL Diversity, Equity, & Inclusion (DEI) Committee is hosting their 2nd happy hour! Network with other APA-IL Planners of Color in a relaxed, after-work virtual chat.


Coffee Talk Networking Hour

Tuesday 3/23/21

11:00 AM

A midday alternative to the Lockdown Lowdown Happy Hour.


Attention Members! Want an online community but can't join a live event?

Join the online Illinois Planners' Forum

Since 2007, the APA-IL has invited APA-IL members to ask questions and collaborate with colleagues through an online forum. In 2020, we've transitioned the APA-IL Illinois Planners' Forum to Google Groups. If you're a member and not already part of the new Forum we invite you to join! This is THE one-stop-shop for asking questions about Illinois urban planning issues. Past questions have ranged from solar panels to pigs as pets to virtual public meetings. LEARN MORE > >


Heart Sign Photo by Nick Fewings on Unsplash


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