College of Liberal Arts & Social Sciences > Academics > Geography and GIS > Faculty > Heather Smith

Heather Smith

MS, Columbia University (New York)
BA, Macalester College

Heather is an urban planner and adjunct professor of Geography at DePaul University. Her work is centered at the intersection of urban planning, environmental justice, and antiracism. She holds over 20 years of nonprofit experience most recently as a Senior Program Officer at the Field Foundation of Illinois.  Heather is a racial healing practitioner trained through the Woods Fund Truth, Racial Healing and Transformation Initiative.  She serves as a Vice-Chair of the American Planning Association's Illinois chapter Diversity, Equity and Inclusion committee.  She was also selected to serve on the Leadership team of Chicago Regional Organizing for Antiracism where she facilitates events. Heather served as the Planning Director for the Congress for the New Urbanism for nine years.  She developed regional plans for Chicago Metropolis 2020 making the business case for planning and worked for the New York City Planning Department. She received an American Planning Association fellowship to foster sustainable development and planning in the United States Senate. Heather was also awarded a fellowship through the Funders' Network for Smart Growth to advance equity and inclusion in philanthropy. She grew up on the South Side of Chicago and serves as Vice-President of the board for the Youth Sailing program for the Jackson Park Yacht Club Foundation.  Heather 's classes in include street design, historical geography of Chicago and a community-based service-learning class on sustainable urban development. Heather holds a bachelor's in Urban studies and Japanese from Macalester College and a Master's in Urban Planning from Columbia University.​

Courses Offered:
GEO 331 Chicago Metropolis
GEO 395 Special Topics: New Urbanism
GEO 200 Sustainable Urban Development​