Mission and Objectives

We’re the Tennessee Chapter of the American Planning Association. Our mission is to provide professional development opportunities using various training platforms for our state-wide members thereby fostering an environment for higher ethical standards in decision-making and accountability. The Chapter carries out the objectives and mission of APA by:

  • Advancing the art and science of the urban planning profession;
  • Encouraging the exchange of information, ideas, and professional experience;
  • Promoting interest in, and the welfare of, the planning profession as both a profession and an integral part of the public policy process, both locally and nationally;
  • Sponsoring activities that advance the overall goals and objectives of APA and the urban planning profession;
  • Encouraging the growth and enhancement of planning education and preparation, particularly, but not limited to, at the university and graduate levels;
  • Fostering a professional community among members;
  • Providing members with opportunities for professional growth and development;
  • Promoting and maintaining professional exchanges and cross-communication with planning-related professions; and
  • Reflecting the diverse personal backgrounds of those in the planning profession as well as those impacted by the planning process.

TAPA Sections

As anyone who has ever had to drive across it can attest to, Tennessee is a long state; it's 557 miles from Trade Gap to the Memphis-Arkansas Bridge. Due to its diversity and length, TAPA is broken up into five sections across the State. Each section has its own Director, Vice Director, Treasury, and Secretary. These sections are responsible for planning local events in their section of the State. Below are the five sections of TAPA:

West Tennessee (including Memphis and Jackson)

Middle Tennessee (including Nashville)



State of Franklin (including Tri-Cities)


Map of the five sections of TAPA

To contact your local section director, please see the Chapter Leadership page.

TAPA Executive Board

The Board is responsible for organizing statewide TAPA events such as our annual planning conferences, awards ceremonies, social happy hours, volunteer opportunities, and CM & AICP training. The board also promotes planning in the community and encourages professional development within the industry. You can see who serves on the Executive Board here.

Strategic Plan

TAPA is guided by a five year strategic plan that was adopted on September 21st, 2016. The plan has goals and objectives that were created to help TAPA fulfill its mission. It also defines its Organizational Structure and has additional plans from several standing committees. Review the plan here


If you're interested in planning in Tennessee, you should become a member of TAPA. Already over 500 members strong, our organization would love to have you be a part of it. We offer two ways to join: a stand-alone Tennessee Chapter only membership, as well as a membership with APA National as well.