Haley James, AICP has been recognized as the 2019 Outstanding Young Planner by the Kentucky Chapter of the American Planning Association. Haley was presented the award at the KY-APA Spring Conference today at Lake Cumberland State Park . The recognition honors young planning professionals who are in their first five years of practice who have demonstrated extraordinary commitment to leadership, professional development, and advancement of the planning profession.
Haley is an AICP planner with Taylor Siefker Williams Design Group in Louisville. She has a Bachelor’s of Urban Development & Planning from Ball State University and started with the company out of college in January of 2015. Over the past four years, Haley has become a key member of our community planning team and is invaluable to the communities we serve.
As Haley began her planning career, she jumped into the profession with enthusiasm, professionalism and a strong desire to learn. These qualities combined with her outstanding technical skills and ability to master new skills quickly allowed her to take a fast-paced career path that outshines many professionals with her experience level. During her first few years of practice she took every opportunity to grow her career from both a technical and personal perspective.
Haley has consistently volunteered to take on larger tasks that many young planners might be daunted by and always puts in the extra effort needed to make sure her work is completed to the highest level. She is not intimidated by areas of the practice that are outside of her comfort zone and always has a respect for making sure she can complete these tasks with accuracy and creativity. Within our company, she has soared in her career growth that is unparalleled. As a newly accredited AICP planner, she not only can lead production on multiple types of planning assignments but she also now manages multiple comprehensive plans for a variety of communities. The planning profession is stronger because of Haley.
Haley has not only created implementable, creative and visionary plans for dozens of communities, she also has become a trusted advisor to many of our communities. Haley is able to prove her technical abilities through her work and provide solutions to planning problems that are creative yet practical. Through this work, many of our communities we serve strongly rely on Haley’s ideas and opinions. One example is Corydon, Indiana. Haley helped to write the comprehensive plan for Corydon in 2015 as she started her career. She provided creative ways to help simplify planning concepts so they could be easily understood by the community partners. She then was able to help our planning team complete a downtown focus plan and strategic investment plan for Corydon that has now resulted in almost $30 million in investment in this small town. Corydon has been a consistent community we’ve served since Haley has started her career and the Town Council and town staff rely on her for many important tasks. The communities we serve are stronger because of Haley.
Haley has not stopped with accelerating her career from just a technical perspective. She has also immersed herself into her community to foster personal growth and build professional relationships through multiple organizations. Haley immediately became active in the Young Professional Association of Louisville (YPAL) by serving on their executive committee as the Director of Professional Development (2016-2017) and currently serves as the Vice President of Programming. She also became active in APA-KY by being an active volunteer on the Conferences Committee for the past 3 years. Currently Haley also sits on the Greater Louisville Inc. Talent Attraction Steering Committee and is also a citizen representative for the New Albany Planning Commission. Haley has a strong sense of responsibility to give back to her profession and community. Our professional organizations and our local community are stronger because of Haley.
According to TSWDG Principal Amy Williams, AICP, “I cannot imagine my professional life without Haley. She is the consistent rock that I rely upon daily, from leading production tasks to helping to manage clients to keeping me organized. I’m more than impressed with her abilities and growth as a young professional. She has exceeded any expectations I would have ever had for someone of her experience level and I have to consistently remind myself that she isn’t a peer with two or three times her experience. I cannot wait to see what she is able to accomplish in the next few years and I’m confident she will conquer anything she sets out to do with her career.”
Taylor Siefker Williams Design Group is proud to have Haley recognized with this impressive honor!