Norquist to leave Congress for New Urbanism

Former Milwaukee Mayor John Norquist, the outspoken president and chief executive officer of the Congress for the New Urbanism in Chicago, has announced that he will step down from his position after the 22nd Annual Congress in Buffalo in 2014.


Norquist’s career at CNU spanned the boom and bust of the housing industry. Norquist initiated the establishment of CNU chapters in the United States and Canada and built partnerships with public, private and nonprofit organizations that have helped CNU grow to over 2,500 members.

“One of John’s great contributions has been to bring together people of all political stripes to understand that walkable communities are good for everyone,” said Ellen Dunham-Jones, CNU’s board chair. “He has put the organization’s emphasis from being theoretical to action-oriented, advocating on behalf of CNU’s great initiatives like urban highway removal, design for healthy neighborhoods and changing federal policies that limit mixed-use development.” 

“After working full time for more than 40 years, I look forward to having time to write and teach,” Norquist stated, adding he would stay active in the New Urbanism movement.

The CNU board has formed a search committee to select a successor, and hopes to announce the new president in the spring of 2014. 

Before leading CNU, Norquist served as mayor of Milwaukee from 1988 to 2004.

Incoming board chair Douglas Farr said, “Norquist is leaving CNU in a strong position to expand the new urbanism movement. CNU’s board, staff, growing chapters and skilled member population are well-positioned to deliver to a world more willing to embrace the CNU goal of communities that perform well environmentally, economically and generate social equity.”

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