The power of the written word
Not many people know what Jason Valerius does, even after he tells them.
So, the senior planner at MSA Professional Services Inc., Madison, decided to help write a book about his profession, to help more people understand what a planner does and interest young students in the profession.
“Planning is not a transparent job,” he said. “Even many of my engineering colleagues were curious as to what we do.”
In their book, “Becoming an Urban Planner: A Guide to Careers in Planning and Urban Design,” Valerius and coauthors Michael Bayer, planner with Environmental Resources Management in Annapolis-Md., and Nancy Frank, associate professor at the University of Wisconsin-Milwaukee School of Architecture and Urban Planning, describe what a planner does — everything from developing master plans to drawing up design standards for municipalities. Through interviews with a variety of planning professionals, the book also details how to get into the profession and potential pitfalls.
In the section “Buyer Beware: Things you might not like about a career in planning” the authors warn future planners of the sacrifices of attending night meetings and the frustration of politics, Valerius said.
The book also warns potential planners to be patient.
“This is not a job with immediate payoffs,” Valerius said. “For most projects, you just hope to see the payoff in your lifetime.”
Bartering for building supplies
Looking for a relatively guilt-free shopping experience?
Check out the Milwaukee/NARI Foundation’s Home Improvement Rummage Sale on April 23 in Milwaukee. At the event, shoppers will find good deals on a host of building materials — from tile to lumber — while supporting scholarships and other charitable offerings.
The annual event, now in its fifth year, offers a wealth of building supplies at low prices, said Greg Adamec, general manager of Huse Milwaukee Millwork & Lumber Co. Inc., West Allis, where the sale will be held.
Milwaukee/NARI Home Improvement Council members donate the items for sale, he said, which can be the result of overstock, incorrect orders and salvaged items from demolition work. All proceeds benefit the Milwaukee NARI Foundation.
“Bartering is allowed,” Adamec said. “But remember, it is for a good cause.”