Rose Fellows head to San Francisco Bay Area for study tour

Members of the Urban Land Institute’s 2013-2014 class of Daniel Rose Fellows arrived in San Francisco on Sunday for this year’s Daniel Rose Fellowship Study Tour.

The event will include working sessions with San Francisco’s planning department, the San Francisco Planning and Urban Research Association, and mayor Jean Quan of Oakland, Calif. Fellows will be on their feet for much of the four-day tour — visiting San Francisco’s Forest City Pier 70 development and Third Street light rail project, Twitter’s downtown office and Oakland’s Broadway and Uptown districts. At SFMade in San Francisco, senior director Janet Rees will lead a discussion about how her organization is supporting a vibrant, small-business based manufacturing sector in the city.

At each stop, they will examine successful strategies on the variety of land use challenges faced by each participating Rose Fellowship city.

The fellowship provides leadership training, professional development, and technical assistance, exposing mayors, city department heads and development authority directors to innovative projects and programs in other cities — giving them the opportunity to exchange ideas with the public and private sector players who helped make those projects happen.

This year’s fellows include mayors Gregory Ballard of Indianapolis, Ind., Kirk Caldwell of Honolulu, Charlie Hales of Portland, Ore., and A. C. Wharton of Memphis, Tenn., as well as three other public or private-sector professional from each invited city. The 2013-2014 class represents a cross-section of high-level public officials including planning directors, city managers, economic development directors and transportation directors.

“There’s no such thing as a school to train mayors to be mayor,” alumni fellow Pedro Segarra, mayor of Hartford, Conn., said last month at an event welcoming the new class of fellows. “This [fellowship] is where you get that experience,” he said.

The fellowship kicked off in November as the 2013-2014 fellows were introduced at a panel discussion at the 2013 Fall Meeting in Chicago. A year-long program, the Daniel Rose Fellowship will also include the 2014 Spring Meeting, a working retreat and study visits to each of the four participating cities.

“In the business of city building, we need to see other places — to be inspired, to make new contacts, to examine how the market context can drive work in our own cities, and to learn about what works and what doesn’t,” says Jess Zimbabwe, executive director of the Daniel Rose Center for Public Leadership. “This study tour is an integral part of these fellows’ year with ULI.”

“It’s a benefit that we’re proud to offer,” adds Gideon Berger, the fellowship program’s senior director, “especially considering how financially-strapped cities can no longer afford to pay for travel and professional development for their public officials.”

Previous year’s study tours included visits to Toronto, Ontario, London, Liverpool and Manchester in England and San Juan, Puerto Rico. The Daniel Rose Fellowship of the Rose Center for Public Leadership was established in 2009.

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