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New Fellows elected for championing EDI and community planning

The Royal Town Planning Institute would like to congratulate Nick Wright and Jeanie Russell on being elected Fellows of the Institute.

Chartered Fellow is the highest professional membership grade offered by the RTPI and is only awarded to chartered members who have made a major personal contribution to the planning profession for the benefit of the public. Under the provisions of the Royal Charter, they are now entitled to use the designatory letters FRTPI.

Nick Wright is a self-employed planner working mainly in Scotland for the public sector and community groups on area plans, strategies, regeneration and research.

He was an RTPI Scottish Executive Committee member, RTPI Scotland Convenor in 2016 and was a board member and volunteer at Planning Aid for Scotland.

The Subcommittee were particularly praiseworthy of how he has used his mediation training to assemble different stakeholders and help people work together more effectively.

Nick said: “It's both heart-warming and humbling to be commended by fellow professionals for doing a good job over a long period of time.

"But as all planners know, good planning doesn't revolve around any one of us as individuals. Rarely do we have the privilege of pointing at a good outcome and saying ‘that was me’, because everything we do is through partnership and teamwork.  For me, the real power of planning is through facilitating, influencing and persuading others, across communities and professions. 

"For me becoming a Fellow isn't about the personal accolade, nice though that is. It's about stepping up what I do for the good of the profession and the quality of the places we help to create.”

Jeanie Russell is an Inspector Manager specialising in enforcement at the Planning Inspectorate.  She is also co-chair of the Inspectorate's Rainbow Network. Her previous career was spent mostly in local government, notably Manchester City Council and the Merseyside Policy Unit.

The Subcommittee were particularly impressed with her leadership on complex enforcement issues with undervalued groups and promoting EDI and gender issues within the built environment.

Jeanie said "I'm honoured to be elected as a Fellow of the RTPI, particularly for my contributions to equality, diversity and inclusion at the Planning Inspectorate, and to the Inspectorate’s knowledge in areas including human rights and the public sector equality duty. 

"I can never pay back the opportunities I've been given but will keep trying to 'pay it forward', and use the privilege of my role and the fellowship, to help make planning more inclusive and accessible for all.”


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