Max Sokol has been elected president of the American Planning Association, New York Metro chapter (APA-NYM).
The chapter represents more than 1,000 urban planners in a 14-county region that includes New York City, Long Island and the Lower Hudson Valley.
Prior to his election as APA-NYM president, Sokol served as the chapter’s vice president of committees in 2015-16, and as its New York City section director in 2013-14.
“I firmly believe that one of the core functions of the chapter is to promote the inherent value of the planning profession and to continually demonstrate the relevance of the APA as a significant voice in the region,” Sokol said in his opening message to the chapter. “In this way, we are all ambassadors of the profession and our chapter, and as a volunteer organization, we thrive when we work together.”
Among his APA achievements is the building and enhancement of the chapter’s inter-organizational partnerships, organizing APA events with the American Society of Landscape Architects, the American Institute of Architects, the American Society of Civil Engineers, WTS, and other professional associations.
“As president, I hope to further these efforts with other members of chapter leadership to encourage interdisciplinary partnerships among related professional associations,” Sokol said.
Sokol, an urban planner in the New York office, has worked in the private, public and non-profit sectors of the planning profession. His experience includes local municipal, county and regional planning across the specializations of transportation, land use, environmental review and public policy.
Originally from Port Washington, New York, Sokol graduated with a bachelor’s degree in economics and anthropology from Brown University, and a master’s degree in urban planning from Columbia University.
Since joining WSP | Parsons Brinckerhoff in 2012, Sokol has served as project manager and deputy project manager on a range of projects, including multimodal transportation planning and transit-oriented development planning in the New York metropolitan area and elsewhere in the Northeast, including:
Prior to joining WSP | Parsons Brinckerhoff, Sokol served as a land use planner at a consulting firm and as a transportation and regional planner for the Nassau County Planning Department. He was also a Century Foundation Fellow at the Regional Plan Association (RPA) and a September 11th Memorial Fellow at the New York Metropolitan Transportation Council (NYMTC).
“I am inspired by those who have decades of experience with our company, and I view such longevity as a testament to the fact that we are the preeminent firm in our industry,” Sokol said. “Our culture of technical excellence is the cornerstone of our success, and we are fortunate to have so many thought leaders as colleagues.”
Sokol said he feels energized by the range of opportunities for career advancement provided by the firm, and is thankful that professional development is a central component of the corporate culture.
“I have great pride in representing WSP | Parsons Brinckerhoff to our clients, which is a reflection of how privileged I feel to be a valued member of such an esteemed firm,” Sokol said.
New York City is hosting the APA National Planning Conference in May, which is expected to attract between 5,000 and 10,000 planners from across the country.
“WSP | Parsons Brinckerhoff will be well represented at the conference, with participation in many panel discussions and mobile workshops that offer opportunities to showcase the firm’s technical excellence to a national audience,” Sokol said.
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