The CNUdc Board


Nominated to two year terms, the CNUdc board contains local architects, landscape architects, urban designers, planners, researchers, and more.  The board organizes events, lectures and more for local members to participate in, and they also lead the outreach to design issues in the Washington, DC region.

Stephanie Bothwell


Ms. Bothwell is the principal of Bothwell Urban and Landscape Design, located in Washington, DC. She is a city and town planner and a landscape architect. Her practice focuses on the creation of sustainable, beautiful and healthy landscapes such as the Long Beach, Mississippi Post Katrina Conceptual Plan Development. Recently, she has designed civic spaces as Consulting Town Landscape Architect for the new town of East Beach in Norfolk, Virginia, a brownfield redevelopment site; the neglected Duke Ellington School of the Arts in Washington DC; and consulted on policy and programs addressing the relationship between housing, open space and transportation.


Since its inception in the early 90’s, Ms. Bothwell has worked extensively on HOPE VI projects and program development with HUD, during which she instituted training programs, conferences and partnerships. HOPE VI’s innovative and transformative program is currently being adopted and expanded by the new administration into the Choice Neighborhoods Program. Since receiving her Master of Landscape Architecture degree from the Harvard Graduate School of Design, Ms. Bothwell has served on the faculties of the Rhode Island School of Design, Radcliffe College, and the Boston Architectural Center, and for a number of years was Associate Professor of Architecture at Auburn University.

Lee Sobel


Mr. Sobel is RCLCO’s Director of Public Strategies, a position that blends his expertise in real estate and finance with his knowledge of land use and transportation policy. He has been a commercial real estate broker with CB Richard Ellis, in South Florida, and he spent 10 years handling real estate development and finance matters with the U.S. EPA’s Office of Sustainable Communities in Washington, D.C. He is a recognized expert in urban retail, market analysis, economic development, and smart growth.


During Lee’s tenure in the public sector, he provided technical assistance, policy research and development, and implementation strategies to local governments, quasi-governmental entities, community groups, and national and local advocacy organizations on real estate, finance, and economic development issues with the goal of achieving sustainable community development. 


Mr. Sobel is a nationally recognized speaker in smart growth, mixed-use and town center development, greyfield and suburban retrofits, economic development, land planning, infrastructure finance, retail real estate development trends, and capital investment trends as they relate to sustainable community development. 

Abbey Oklak


Miss Oklak is an architectual and urban designer with the firm Cooper Carry.  She works on urban design, masterplans, and planning initiatives for both the public and private sectors as well as creating schematic drawings for individual residential, commercial and retail buildings. 

Previously, Miss Oklak completed the the Prince’s Foundation for Building Community (PFBC)'s Graduate Fellowship program where she developed a kitemarking scheme for PFBC, helped organize educational events for professionals and the public, and worked on multiple design projects in cities, such as Rushden and Truro. In her second year, Ms. Oklak was seconded to Stanhope Gate Architecture and Urban Design where she worked on restorations and renovations to traditional buildings in London. She also wrote a dissertation on the urban morphology of early American colonial towns. 

Miss Oklak graduated from the University of Notre Dame with a Bachelor’s Degree in Architecture, and she received a Masters in Sustainable Architecture from the University of Wales.  She is AICP licensed and a LEED Accredited Professional.  She is also on the board of her Alexandria neighborhood civic association - the Braddock Metro Citizens' Coalition.

Dhiru Thadani

Mr. Thadani is an architect and urbanist who has been in practice since 1978.  As a design principal and partner for more than thirty years, he has completed projects the world over, and he continues to provide a broad range of consulting services in architecture and urban design.


Mr. Thadani was born to the boisterous urbanism of Bombay, India and moved to Washington, D.C. in 1972 to attend the Catholic University of America, where he received his undergraduate and graduate degrees in architecture.  During his forty years in Washington, he has taught, practiced, and worked to place architecture and urbanism in the public eye.


Since its formation in 1993, Mr. Thadani has been a charter member of the Congress for the New Urbanism (CNU), and has been a member of the CNU Board since 2005.  He was a 2001 Fellow in the Knight Program for Community Building, a four-time recipient of the CNU Charter Award for design, and the recipient of the 2011 Seaside Prize.


Mr. Thadani has been the principal organizer of numerous design workshops, charrettes, and professional symposia, and his work has been widely exhibited and published.  He has lectured throughout the Americas, Europe, and Asia. His professional work has included new and adapted buildings, new developments, neighborhood revitalization, and urban retrofits and infills.   

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Matthew Bell

Matthew Bell, FAIA is a registered architect who specializes in large-scale architecture and urban design and is Professor of Architecture at the University of Maryland.  Professionally Matt has been active throughout the Washington/Baltimore region with projects ranging in scale from waterfronts, new towns and neighborhoods to civic and mixed-use buildings and schools. From 1994 to 1999 Bell was the Director and conference chair of the Northeast Regional meeting of the Mayor's Institute for City Design, sponsored by the National Endowment for the Arts.  His work has been exhibited at the Triennale di Milano and in 2006 he served as a juror for the Biennale of Venice (Italy).  In addition, his graduate students at Maryland have twice won the prestigious Urban Land Institute/Gerald Hines Urban Design and Development Competition.

Bell is a Fellow of the American Institute of Architects and a member of the Congress for the New Urbanism.  He is a Principal in the Washington, DC office of Perkins Eastman Architects ( and also Vice President of the Restoring Ancient Stabia Foundation (, an international effort to restore the ancient seaside villas of Stabiae, near Pompei.  His professional work with Perkins Eastman has received awards from the American Institute of Architects, the Congress for the New Urbanism, the USGBC, the Urban Land Institute and the Committee for 100 on the Federal City.  Bell has degrees in Architecture and Urban Design from the University of Notre Dame and Cornell University.

Gracie Williams

Miss Williams is an architectural designer at the firm Cooper Carry. Currently working in the higher education studio, her projects focus on both new and existing science and technology buildings. She previously worked on a mixed use project in Alexandria, VA as well as some residential projects in Colorado Springs and San Francisco.

Miss Williams graduated from the University of Notre Dame in May of 2018 with a bachelors in architecture. While studying there, she was introduced to new urbanism and grew more interested in building great cities while living in Rome for a year. Inspired by her travel through Europe, she focused her thesis on the walkability and growth of a city and designed a train station for her hometown, Colorado Springs. During summers home, Miss Williams worked for the City Parks Department which gave her the opportunity to visit and care for many of the public green spaces within the city.

After graduation, she moved to the DC area where she hopes to become a licensed architect and continue learning more about cities and how they come together.

Michael Medick

Mr. Medick is a Principal in KTGY’s Tysons office. As a registered architect and urban planner, Mr. Medick brings extensive experience in real estate development, community design and revitalization of cities, buildings, campuses and neighborhoods. Mr. Medick possesses design experience in all segments of the real estate industry, including single-family, multifamily,  mixed-use development, campus planning and housing, military base housing, retail, commercial, Traditional Neighborhood Development (TND), Transit-Oriented Development (TOD) and community design guidelines.


Mr. Medick has served as chairman of the American Institute of Architects (AIA) National Housing Committee and a member of AIA’s Livable Communities Committee; president of the University of Maryland School of Architecture Alumni Association and a member of the Alumni Board of Directors; and, most recently, the Baton Rouge Growth Coalition Board of Directors and the USGBC – Louisiana Chapter Board of Directors. Mr. Medick currently serves as a member of the Urban Land Institute (ULI) Residential Neighborhood Development Council.

Robert A. Peck

Mr. Peck is a co-leader of Gensler's Government & Defense practice. He served for eight years as Commissioner of the U.S. General Services Administration’s Public Buildings Service, responsible for design, construction, leasing, and management for more than 375 million square feet of space housing more than 1.1 million employees with an annual budget of more than $9 billion. He has been a land use attorney, commercial real estate mortgage banker and broker, and has also served as President of the Greater Washington Board of Trade and Vice President for Public Affairs at the American Institute of Architects. He received his B.A. cum laude with distinction in economics from the University of Pennsylvania and his J.D. from Yale Law School. A Gensler Principal, Bob has been a visiting Loeb Fellow at Harvard University's Graduate School of Design and a visiting lecturer at Yale College. An Honorary Member of both the AIA and American Society of Landscape Architects, in 2012 he received the AIA Thomas Jefferson Award for Public Architecture.