Longtime planner switching counties

The Chester County Commissioners announced the appointment of a longtime public planner to head the Chester County Planning Commission.

O'Leary will head the Chester County Planning Commission.

Brian O'Leary will head the Chester County Planning Commission.

Brian O’Leary will join the county on Oct. 5 as executive director, replacing Ronald Bailey, who retired earlier this year, a county press release said. O’Leary has nearly 30 years of public planning experience with the Montgomery County Planning Commission, where he served 16 years as section chief. He is also president of the Board of Directors of the Pennsylvania Chapter of the American Planning Association and a government representative board member of the Delaware Valley Smart Growth Alliance.

“We are pleased to appoint someone who has such an extensive background in public planning in Pennsylvania municipal government, as well as someone who is so highly respected within his professional community,” said Chester County Commissioners’ Chairman Terence Farrell in the release.

O’Leary was responsible for the development of Montgomery County’s new comprehensive plan, “Montco 2040, A Shared Vision.” Many county government planning projects that have been managed by O’Leary have received state and national awards, including the new comprehensive plan, as well as his work on transitions to residential neighborhoods, workforce housing and mixed use developments, the release said.

“Brian’s experience in the development and management of county comprehensive plans, his collaboration with many community stakeholders and his leadership of public outreach efforts on planning issues will serve Chester County well as we approach the point where we need to begin the process of reviewing and updating our Landscapes2 comprehensive plan,” said Commissioner Kathi Cozzone in the release.

Commissioner Michelle Kichline agreed, adding that O’Leary’s experience overseeing Montgomery County’s farmland preservation program would be particularly beneficial. “We also thank David Ward for his leadership as interim director of the Planning Commission, as well as the staff for their work in providing many high quality programs and services to the citizens of Chester County,” Kichline said.


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