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College of Environment and Design

Bruce Lonnee


Bruce Lonnee

Personal Interests

Municipal and regional planning theory and practice
Philosophies of community design and development
State and local public planning policy
Affordable and alternative housing
Historic Preservation planning theory and practice
Neighborhood planning
Urban history
20th Century North American Historic Resources
Commercial archaeology.




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Biographical Information

Before I graduated from high school, my family had the opportunity to live in seven communities in two countries, and every summer was spent traveling to visit extended family and friends across the United States and Canada.  Those experiences inspired my curiosity about the broad variety of places that people call home and the shared experiences that these people have within their communities.  The process of being transplanted from place to place taught me that every community has worth, and even the toughest environments have their own charm.  Thankfully my curiosity was rarely denied, often encouraged, and never resulted in me getting into any big trouble.

That same curiosity leads me to attend McMaster University in Hamilton, Ontario, for my undergraduate studies, then on to Moscow State University for specialized coursework and an internship in the office of Moscow Mayor Yury Luzhkov. Following that experience, I realized that I wanted to pursue a graduate degree in urban planning.  I enrolled in the Master of Urban Planning program at the University of Wisconsin-Milwaukee and worked simultaneously as the City Planner for the City of Greenfield, Wisconsin until graduation. My time in Milwaukee refined my love for neighborhood planning, urban history, and historic architecture, and my growing curiosity in those fields lead me to move to Athens in 1996 to enroll in the Master of Historic Preservation program at the University of Georgia. 

Growing up in the South without ever having lived in Georgia, I only had second-hand knowledge of Athens from school friends, neighbors, and countless pop culture references.  I arrived with expectations of Athens as a unique place, and what I found was a community filled with stories and a built environment reflective of its layered history.  After completing the MHP coursework, I was offered a grant-funded position with the Athens-Clarke County Planning Department in 1998 and that opportunity evolved into a permanent long-range planning position.  In 2001, I was named Assistant Director of the Planning Department, and have been fortunate ever since to work with a highly-skilled staff in serving the diverse needs of our growing community.

I have held professional planner positions at the neighborhood, municipal, county, and regional levels since 1992.  My experiences have taught me that, even though the planning profession’s primary purpose is to manage change, guiding appropriate community change relies on appreciating the true value of a place.  Understanding of a place requires listening to residents, learning their history and hopes for the future, and actively observing everything possible first-hand before taking any action.



Honors B.A. in History and Political Science (1992) McMaster University;  Hamilton, Ontario, Canada

Graduate Certificate, Center for Social and Political Studies (1992) Moscow State University; Moscow, Russia

Specialization in Urban History and Municipal Administration

Master of Urban Planning (1995).  University of Wisconsin - Milwaukee; Milwaukee, Wisconsin

Graduate Project:  Community Development Strategy for Milwaukee’s Near South Side

Master of Historic Preservation (1999).  University of Georgia; Athens, Georgia

Masters Thesis Topic:  Preserving the American Drive-In Theater



Member – American Institute of Certified Planners

Member – American Planning Association and Georgia Planning Association

Member – National Trust for Historic Preservation



PLAN 6124 – Justice, Ethics, and Professional Practice
LAND 6710 – Professional Practice


Municipal and regional planning theory and practice; Philosophies of community design and development; State and local public planning policy; Affordable and alternative housing; Historic Preservation planning theory and practice; Neighborhood planning; Urban history; 20th Century North American Historic Resources; Commercial archaeology.



University of Georgia; Athens, Georgia

  • Part-Time Instructor (2016 – Present), College of Environment & Design
  • Guest Lecturer (1999 – Present), College of Family and Consumer Science, Institute of Ecology, Terry College of Business, and College of Agriculture and Environmental Science.  



Assistant Planning Director (2001 – Present)

Athens-Clarke County Planning Department; Athens, Georgia

Senior Planner, Long Range Planning Division, (1999 – 2001)

Athens-Clarke County Planning Department; Athens, Georgia

Assistant Comprehensive Planner, Long Range Planning Division (1998 – 1999)

Athens-Clarke County Planning Department; Athens, Georgia

Preservation Planning Research Assistant, Local Planning Division (1996 – 1998)

Northeast Georgia Regional Center; Athens, Georgia

Project Director, Sherman Park Economic Development Initiative (1995 – 1996)

Sherman Park Community Association (SPCA); Milwaukee, Wisconsin

Urban Planner,City of Greenfield, Wisconsin (1993 - 1995)

Land Use Research Assistant,Regional Planning Division (1994)

Southeastern Wisconsin Regional Planning Commission; Waukesha, Wisconsin



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