Daniel Burnham Award for a Comprehensive Plan

For a comprehensive or general plan that advances the science and art of planning. The award honors America's most famous planner, Daniel Burnham, for his contributions to the planning profession and to a greater awareness of the benefits of good planning.

  • 2018 - Sarpy County Comprehensive Plan
  • 2017 - Cozad Comprehensive Plan
  • 2016 - Blair Comprehensive Plan (JEO)
  • 2015 - Ralston Comprehensive Plan (JEO)
  • 2014 - Lex Plan 2033 (JEO)
  • 2011 - Environment Element, Omaha Plan
  • 2009 - Douglas County Comprehensive Development Plan

Best Practice

This award is for a specific planning tool, practice, program, project, or process. This category emphasizes results and demonstrates how innovative and state-of-the-art planning methods and practices help to create communities of lasting value.

  • 2018 - Flatwater Crossing Design Guidelines (South Sioux City)
  • 2017 - TIF Game
  • 2016 - City of Omaha Infill Guidelines and Overlay Zoning
  • 2013 - Elwood Downtown Revitalization Plan
  • 2011 - Lexington Downtown Revitalization Plan; South Omaha Development Plan
  • 2010 - Downtown Nebraska City Revitalization Plan; Omaha Downtown Master Plan; Gretna Comprehensive Plan
  • 2009 - North Omaha Development Project

Grassroots Initiative

Honoring an initiative that illustrates how a neighborhood, community group or other local non-governmental entity utilized the planning process to address a specific need or issue within the community. Emphasis is placed on the success of planning in new or different settings, with total project budget (including staff, consultant, and direct expenses) not exceeding $25,000.


Recognizing an effort that demonstrates a significant achievement for an area—a single community or a region—in accomplishing positive changes as a result of planning. This award emphasizes long-term, measurable results. Nominated efforts should have been in continuous effect for a minimum of three (3) years, not including the time for plan preparation and approval.

  • 2017 - Grand Island Downtown Redevelopment Study; Lincoln Downtown Master Plan and Update; Plattsmouth Downtown Revitalization
  • 2015 - Park Avenue Redevelopment Study, Omaha (RDG)
  • 2009 - Omaha by Design

Public Outreach

This award honors an individual, project, or program that uses information and education about the value of planning to create greater awareness among citizens or specific segments of the public. The award celebrates how planning improves a community's quality of life.

  • 2017 - TIF Workshop
  • 2016 - Lower Platte South Natural Resource District

Communications Initiative

This award honors efforts to "tell the planning story" and increase awareness and understanding about the planning profession.

Transportation Planning

This award honors efforts to increase transportation choices for all populations, reducing dependence on private automobiles and helping to ease congestion and reducing climate change impacts.

  • 2018 - Metropolitan Area Planning Agency (MAPA) Online Bike Map

Environmental Planning

This award honors efforts to create greener communities that reduce the impact of development on the natural environment and improve environmental quality.

  • 2018 - Drought Management Plan for the Lower Elkhorn River Natural Resources District
  • 2017 - Beatrice Hazard Mitigation Plan
  • 2014 - Crete Wellhead Protection Plan (JEO)
  • 2013 - Sarpy County Energy Element; Wahoo Creek Watershed Water Quality Management Plan, Lower Platte North NRD

Urban Design

This award honors efforts to create a sense of place, whether a street, public space, neighborhood, or campus effort.

  • 2018 - City of Gretna Downtown Revitalization Plan & Design Guidelines
  • 2016 - Flatwater Crossing Neighborhood Master Plan-HoChunk (HDR)
  • 2015 - Bellevue University Campus Master Plan (HDR)
  • 2014 - La Vista Civic Center Park Master Plan; University Village, UNK (HDR)
  • 2013 - South Omaha Streetscape Revitalization

Innovation in Economic Planning and Development

This award honors efforts to transform economies and stimulate economic development in communities of all sizes.

  • 2017 - Creighton University Medical Center (CUMC) and Gifford Park Master Plan
  • 2010 - Nemaha NRD Hazard Mitigation Plan

Advancing Diversity and Social Change in Honor of Paul Davidoff

This award honors an individual, project, group, or organization that promotes diversity and demonstrates a sustained commitment to advocacy by addressing the concerns of women and minorities through specific actions or contributions within the planning profession or through planning practice. The award honors the late APA member, Paul Davidoff, for his contributions to the planning profession.

  • 2013 - Pamela Dingman, PE

Charleston-Ptak Planning Advocate Award

This award honors an individual or appointed or elected official who has advanced or promoted the cause of planning in the public arena. This award is named after Steve Charleston and David Ptak for their leadership and advocacy for good planning in Nebraska. This is a National Award but is not referred to the Charleston-Ptak Planning Advocate Award.

  • 2018 - Central Nebraska Growth Foundation; Clint Schukei, Norfolk
  • 2017 - David Levy
  • 2016 - Kim Nieman, Pilger
  • 2014 - Lower Platte South NRD; Mayor Chris Beutler, Lincoln
  • 2011 - Steve Charleston; David Ptak
  • 2010 - Connie Spellman

Planning Firm

Honors a planning firm that has produced distinguished work that continues to influence the professional practice of planning.

  • 2016 - JEO Consulting Group, Inc.

Planning Agency

This award honors the work of a public sector planning agency that has continually produced a program of exceptional work that has elevated awareness about planning.

  • 2018 - Metropolitan Area Planning Agency (MAPA)

Emerging Planning and Design Firm

This award honors a young planning and design firm that has helped elevate the planning profession and build public support for planning, and through its current work demonstrates the potential of having a continual influence on the planning profession for years to come.

Alden Aust Distinguished Leadership Award for a Professional Planner

Recognizes an individual's sustained contribution to the profession through distinguished practice, teaching, or writing. (This is an APA Nebraska award only. National APA no longer has this category.) This award is named after Alden Aust former Planning Director at the City of Omaha and a former FAICP member for his leadership and professionalism in Nebraska.

  • 2014 - Steve Jensen, AICP
  • 2013 - Lonnie Dickson

Wozniak-Selander Award for a Planning Pioneer

Honoring pioneers of the profession who have made personal and direct innovations in American planning that have significantly and positively redirected planning practice, education, or theory with long-term results. (This is an APA Nebraska award only. National APA no longer has this category.) This award is named after Richard Wozniak, FAICP and Robert Selander for their leadership and pioneering attitudes toward planning in Nebraska.

  • 2014 - Harry Milligan
  • 2013 - Carol Swayne; Gordon Scholz
  • 2012 - Richard Wozniak, FAICP; Robert Selander

Great Places in Nebraska

This award is to recognize and celebrate great urban and rural places of exemplary character, quality, and planning. These areas represent the gold standard in terms of having a true sense of place, culture and historic interest, community involvement and a vision for tomorrow. This award category is modeled on the National APA award category and may lead to nomination as a candidate for national recognition.

  • 2018 - Downtown Seward
  • 2017 - South Sioux City Riverfront