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APA Utah News & Events

APAUT President Elect 2021 Kirsten Whetstone, AICP

August 26, 2020 by Nicole Mason

Congratulations Kirsten!

Kirsten Whetstone, MS, AICP has over thirty years of professional experience in municipal government working on a variety of large-scale development projects, annexations, general planning and zoning initiatives, affordable housing, and food system resilience. She started her career as a City Planner in Fort Collins, Colorado learning and implementing intricacies of the Permit System approach to zoning and community development. She relocated to Utah to learn and solve challenges of resort town planning.  Kirsten was a Senior Planner in Park City, Utah for 25 years. She recently accepted a position in Summit County, Utah to oversee development of a planned community in the Hoytsville area and to focus on regional and rural town planning, agriculture preservation and new urbanism for Summit County’s Department of Community Development, Planning and Design.

Kirsten is currently vice president of the Utah Chapter of the American Planning Association and is a member of the American Institute of Certified Planners. She previously chaired and co-chaired Utah APA Programs Committee for many years and chaired the 2017 Utah APA Fall conference organizing committee. She holds a bachelor’s degree in Civil Engineering from Stanford University and a master’s in Town and Regional Planning from Utah State University. Kirsten hails from New Mexico, Land of Enchantment. She is an avid trail runner, Nordic skier and traveler who enjoys exploring communities and natural areas throughout the world, as well as the canyons and mesas of southeastern Utah, with her husband, Richard Bullough and son, Garrett.



There is no better time to be a planner in Utah than now. We have a great opportunity to lead our communities through these challenging times. Planners are by trade visionaries, problem solvers, protectors of community character, creative code writers, community engagers and advocates, and balancers of community interests. We have experienced widespread change in our communities, in our profession and across the state and country, but no profession is better prepared to help communities address present and future challenges. Through planning and advocacy, our communities will find and implement solutions, effectively manage change, and become truly great, inclusive and resilient places.


Utah APA has a mission of fostering the principles of visioning and planning for a better future, providing a wide range of educational opportunities, and representing our members in matters related to national American Planning Association. Utah APA has a long tradition of providing leadership to the planning profession and citizen planners in Utah.  As our professionals, students, academics, and citizens work together to solve problems and create great communities for all, so should our professional organization. As president, I will work to ensure that Utah APA continues to support all our members and the communities they serve. That work includes providing valuable SERVICE, inclusive LEADERSHIP, and effective COMMUNICATION.

SERVICE to members includes: 1) supporting professional development and networking opportunities, 2) providing accessible and affordable training and continuing education on relevant topics, 3) building on successes of our bi-annual conferences, 4) maintaining connections and awareness of legislative issues, and 5) recognizing achievements and contributions to the profession and our communities.

One focus of Chapter LEADERSHIP that is critical in addressing future challenges is inviting and engaging our bright, enthusiastic, emerging professionals in the work we do. Their fresh ideas, energy and insight into their future should drive our conversations. Developing tomorrow’s leaders through Chapter involvement and mentoring will bode well for the future of planning in Utah.

Effective COMMUNICATION is key to achieving the Chapter’s mission.  Utilizing new technologies, such as video conferencing, to not only provide important information and resources to planners, but to effectively engage all our members is critical.  Continuing to develop an inclusive, multi-pronged communication system that supports the efforts of our members and Chapter committees, is vital as we articulate our collective role in creating great communities for all.”

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