The Importance of People-Centered Planning with RAYO Planning

Episode 29 April 03, 2023 00:41:01
The Importance of People-Centered Planning with RAYO Planning
Urban Planning is Not Boring
The Importance of People-Centered Planning with RAYO Planning

Apr 03 2023 | 00:41:01

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Hosted By

Natalie Ikhrata Samantha Ellman

Show Notes

Attention all urban planning enthusiasts! In the latest episode of "Urban Planning Is Not Boring," co-hosts Sam and Nat sit down with Victoria Ferrell Ortiz, Executive Director, and Evelyn Mayo, Co-Chair, of RAYO Planning, a non-profit planning firm based in Texas.

RAYO Planning is a 501(c)3 urban planning nonprofit that is committed to closing the health, wealth and opportunity gap in communities through land use planning, policy creation and cultural preservation. RAYO works with communities in Texas in four main subject areas: community education, direct advocacy, reforming city planning, and community planning.

In this episode, Victoria and Evelyn share their insights on operating a planning firm as a non-profit organization and the unique challenges and opportunities that come with this structure. They also discuss some of the communities and organizations that they have worked with while at RAYO and some of the amazing accomplishments that have been realized!

If you're interested in learning more about RAYO Planning and the important work they're doing in Texas, be sure to tune in to this episode of "Urban Planning Is Not Boring." Trust us, it's anything but boring!

To learn more about RAYO Planning, visit their website at https://www.rayoplanning.com/ and support them by donating at https://www.rayoplanning.com/donate!!

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RAYO Mission Statement: 

Mission Statement: RAYO Planning is a 501(c)3 urban planning nonprofit that is committed to closing the health, wealth and opportunity gap in communities through land use planning, policy creation and cultural preservation.

Evelyn Mayo: RAYO Planning Co-Chair

Evelyn’s last point of departure before leaving the U.S. as a child was Austin, Texas. She spent her childhood moving around Europe and Asia, which exposed her to different cultures, languages, foods and ways of life. After graduating High School in Singapore, she moved back to the U.S. and where she pursued an undergraduate degree in Environmental Science at Barnard College, Columbia University in New York City. In 2017, Evelyn moved to Dallas, Texas to pursue her interests in environmental justice and community organizing in the “belly of the beast”. She worked in poverty law as an advocate for fair housing and environmental justice issues from 2017 to 2021 with Legal Aid of NorthWest Texas and Disability Rights Texas, while also acting as Chair of the Board of Downwinders at Risk. Evelyn is AICP certified and received her MCRP from the University of Texas at Arlington. She is the inaugural Urban Research Initiative Fellow at Paul Quinn College, where she leads research and advocacy efforts to use planning as a tool to address systemic racial injustices in Southern Dallas.

Victoria Ferrell-Ortiz: RAYO Planning Executive Director

Victoria’s interest in urban planning began in high school, while attending the Judge Barefoot Sanders Law Magnet at Yvonne A. Ewell Townview Magnet Center. But it wasn’t identified plainly as “Urban Planning” at the time. She first became indoctrinated when she learned what gentrification was through a friend's experience around displacement in Old East Dallas. In 2016, she received her Bachelors of Arts in Integrative Studies from the University of North Texas in Denton, with concentrations in international studies, sociology, and public administration and community service. After graduating from college and returning home to Dallas she experienced it personally through the gentrification of her West Dallas neighborhood (Victoria has family in Ledbetter, a barrio of West Dallas) and Oak Cliff. She served on the Arts and Culture Advisory Commission for the City of Dallas as an at large member for one term. Victoria is a Barrio Historian of the Cemento Grande and Oak Cliff Barrios.

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