Welcoming Toni Griffin

Welcoming Toni Griffin

Dean Mohsen Mostafavi has announced the appointment of Toni L. Griffin (LF ‘98) as Professor in Practice of Urban Planning at the GSD, where she will lead a Design Lab this spring.

Griffin spent the last five years as professor of architecture and director of the J. Max Bond Center on Design for the Just City at the Spitzer School of Architecture at the City College of New York.  She previously served as distinguished professor and chair of the Department of Real Estate Law and Urban Planning at UC Berkeley, and scholar in residence for the Department of Urban Planning at Michigan State University. At the GSD, Griffin had been an adjunct associate professor (2009-2011) and a design critic (2006-2009).

Griffin’s practice Urban Planning for the American City–which combines urban design, planning, and civic engagement with innovative mixed-use redevelopment projects and citywide and neighborhood planning strategies–recently completed the award-winning Detroit Future City Strategic Framework Plan.

Prior to returning to private practice, Griffin was the director of community development for Newark, where she created a centralized division of planning and urban design. Between 2000 and 2006, she was vice president and director of design for the Anacostia Waterfront Corporation in Washington, DC, and deputy director for revitalization planning and neighborhood planning in the DC Office of Planning. Earlier, Griffin served as vice president for planning & tourism development for the Upper Manhattan Empowerment Zone Development Corporation.

She began her career as an architect with Skidmore, Owings & Merrill LLP in Chicago, where she became an associate partner involved in architecture and urban design projects. Griffin received a BArch from the University of Notre Dame.

Watch Toni Griffin's TED Talk offering a new vision for Detroit.

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