The BEPIC Governance Structure
Abigail Moriah, Co-Director
Abigail Moriah, Founder/Director of the Black Planning Project, is an urban planner specializing in affordable housing. In 2018, Abigail founded the Black Planning Project and through her practice is elevating Black Planning to centre Black experiences and engagement in planning and development. She is excited to be a founding member of the Mentorship Initiative for Indigenous, Black and Planners of Colour (MIIPOC) in 2019 and also the Black Planners and Urbanists Association established in 2020.
Dr. Magdalena Ugarte, Co-Director
Dr. Magdalena Ugarte is an Assistant Professor in the School of Urban and Regional Planning at Toronto Metropolitan University, where she teaches courses in social planning, planning theory, and public policy. Her work examines the relationship between planning, settler colonialism, and other forms of institutionalized dispossession, as well as how communities historically excluded from mainstream planning plan for themselves.
Hanaa Ali, Project Manager
Hanaa Ali is an architect, urban designer and planner, with international experience teaching and researching architecture and urbanism. Her research focuses on forced displacement. She has published a number of articles and a book chapter on the topic. Her publications include “At Home with Displacement? Material Culture as a Site of Resistance in Sudan” in Home Cultures and has contributed a book chapter to The Road to the Two Sudans, Cambridge Scholars Publishing, chapter title ‘Settlement and Displacement in Sudan’.
Simone Weir, Community Coordinator
Simone is a community developer, project manager and event organizer, with over 10 years’ experience working in community economic development in both Montreal and Toronto. Simone’s involvement with the Black Planning Project is born from a passion to increase dialogue, engagement and understanding of the Black experience and its relation to public spaces. Simone hopes to achieve this through writing, innovative research and education.
Dr. Beverley Mullings
Dr. Beverley Mullings, Professor at the University of Toronto. She is interested in the ways that evolving racial capitalist regimes are recasting and transforming work, divisions of labour, patterns of urban governance and responses to social and economic injustices in the Caribbean and its Diaspora.
Dr. Andrea Roberts
Dr. Andrea Roberts is Associate Professor of Urban and Environmental Planning, and Director of the Center for Cultural Landscapes at the University of Virginia, and the consultant/owner of Freedom Colonies Project LLC. She is also the founder of The Texas Freedom Colonies Project, a research & social justice initiative documenting placemaking history and grassroots preservation practices in the African Diaspora. Her research frames planning and historic preservation practices as avenues to social justice.
Dr. Sheryl-Ann Simpson
Dr. Sheryl-Ann Simpson, Assistant Professor at Carleton University, brings research expertise in community development, environmental justice, and participatory research, including piloting hybrid online-in person participatory design research tools to engage youth. She is also leading research focused on the relationships between planning and abolition.
Dr. Ren Thomas
Dr. Ren Thomas, Associate Professor at Dalhousie University, brings research expertise in social justice and equity with a focus on issues critical to low-income people such as comparing rental housing policies across Canadian cities and exploring the growth of the non-profit housing sector. Her teaching actively engages students with keynote speakers on these challenges.
Dr. Leela Viswanathan
Dr. Leela Viswanathan, is the principal and founder of Viswali Consulting. She is a community-driven researcher, educator, and advisor on equity, diversity, inclusion, anti-racism, and decolonization.
ade abegunde is a creative and cultural producer, with a background in spatial design. She is one of the co-founders of local·global, a creative studio dedicated to sharing stories from African communities across the globe.