At its May 25, 2016 meeting, the Vancouver City Planning Commission elected Nola-Kate Seymoar and Neal LaMontagne as co-chairs. Nola-Kate and Neal bring extensive professional urban planning experience to the Commission. They will provide leadership and direction in the implementation of the Commission’s work plan. They will also play a central role in our engagement activities with planning and urban development professionals, partners, and the broader community.
Nola-Kate is the retired president and CEO of the International Centre for Sustainable Cities (1999-2010). Under her leadership, ICSC won international recognition in urban planning and design, solid waste management, urban greening, energy efficiency and food security, and Canada’s top award for long-standing commitment to international cooperation.
Nola Kate has worked at all three levels of government. This includes serving as director general in Environment Canada and executive director of a royal commission of inquiry. In the non- governmental sector, she headed two large international conference events and was deputy to the president of the International Centre for Sustainable Development.
Nola Kate has contributed to many international summits and events as a speaker, delegate, and organizer. She served on advisory committees for the World Urban Forum and the World Peace Forum in 2006 in Vancouver. She also headed a team of writers that produced From Ideas to Action: 70 Actionable Ideas for the World Urban Forum III.
Nola Kate has three interdisciplinary degrees. These include a Ph.D. in social psychology, a master’s in community development and a bachelor of arts in recreation administration. She has taught at both undergraduate and graduate levels. Her writing and research centers on communities and empowerment.
Nola-Kate received the UN Association’s Global Citizen Award in 1995, the Queen’s Golden Jubilee Medal in 2002 and the Queen’s Diamond Jubilee Medal in 2012.
Neal is a practicing city planner with a decade and a half of experience in the public and private sectors in California and BC. His most recent position was that of Manager of Long Range and Community Planning for the City of North Vancouver. He seeks to shape the urban environment in a just, sustainable and collaborative manner through policy, regulation, and community dialogue.
Past experience includes work as a Senior Planner for the City of Vancouver on civic sustainability, transportation, and housing issues. Neal has also worked as a consultant on comprehensive city and local area plans, zoning codes, design guidelines, and urban design strategies in the US and Canada. He has been an adjunct professor at the New School of Architecture and Design, San Diego State University and the University of California San Diego.
Neal received his Master of Urban Planning from McGill University. He is currently completing a PhD in Urban Planning at the University of California Los Angeles. His academic interests include urban design policy and regulatory frameworks, the political economy of the built environment, complexity and adaptive urbanism, urban design history, and planning practice.
Past Chair: Danielle Bauer
Nola-Kate and Neal were elected to the positions following the early resignation of Commissioner Danielle Bauer, who left to launch her business in the field of public space projects. Danielle had been Chair since January, 2015.