Beth White is one of the nation's leading urban park planners. In June 2016, she joined the Houston Parks Board as president and CEO. She leads the organization in implementing and maintaining the $220 million Bayou Greenways 2020 project, an ambitious, public-private effort to create a 150-mile network of parks and trails along Houston's major waterways. She brings extensive experience from The Trust for Public Land, where she served as director, Chicago region, and oversaw the development of Chicago's innovative park and elevated trail system, The 606.Over the past decade, White has led several successful projects involving public-private partnerships, planning, fundraising, and opening new parks throughout the Chicago metropolitan region, spanning three states. White was also instrumental in the designation of Hackmatack, the only U.S. National Wildlife Refuge within 150 miles of Chicago and Milwaukee. Prior to her work at The Trust for Public Land, White served as Chicago Housing Authority managing director in charge of communication activities, resource development and intergovernmental relations. She also served as Chief of Staff for the Chicago Transit Board, directed the initial phases of Chicago's $100 million Empowerment Zone program, supervised the City of Chicago's award-winning CitySpace program, and, as the founding executive director of the non-profit Friends of the Chicago River, led the creation of the lauded Chicago River Urban Design Guidelines. She currently serves on the advisory board for Houston Urban Land Institute. In 2016, President Obama reappointed White to the National Capital Planning Commission, the federal government's planning agency that preserves and enhances the extraordinary historical, cultural, and natural resources and federal assets of the National Capital Region. Most recently, White received the 2019 Harry Chaddick Distinguished Public Service Award, bestowed by Lambda Alpha International (LAI), an honorary land economics society driven by an obligation to provide service to the community by working to find ways to contribute professionally to the enrichment of our planned environment. Beth holds a master's degree in urban studies from Loyola University and a bachelor's degree in communication studies from Northwestern University.
View Speaker Sessions
- B08. How Landscape Conservation Is Essential to 21st Century Conservation Priorities
October 05, 2021
3:00 PM - 4:30 PM