New Director for TPL’s Chicago Office

CHICAGO, IL, 4/7/2006: The Trust for Public Land (TPL), a national non-profit conservation organization, announced today that Beth White has been hired as director of its Chicago Area Office. White, who began her duties on April 3, leads a talented team of conservation and real estate experts with an established record of land conservation throughout much of Illinois, southeast Wisconsin and northwest Indiana.

“We always have had high expectations for the Chicago Area Office,” said Cynthia Whiteford, TPL’s Central Region Director. “With Beth’s stellar credentials in governmental affairs, community planning and land conservation, we will continue those expectations. She is a demonstrated leader, manager, consensus builder, communicator, and a visionary.”

Recent accomplishments of the Chicago Area Office include the expansion of Haas Park on Chicago’s northwest side, the purchase of 240 acres that the City of Elgin will use to create one of the region’s largest municipal parks, the purchase of land for the York Center Park District in central DuPage County, and the protection from development of Plum Island on the Illinois River near Starved Rock State Park.

White said she is thrilled to be joining such a respected and effective organization.

“Conserving land for people is vital to our quality of life and no one does it better than TPL,” White said. “Communities thrive when they include parks, recreation and open space. These are as necessary as quality housing, transportation, schools, jobs and the arts.”

White most recently served as a Chicago Housing Authority managing director in charge of communication activities, resource development and intergovernmental relations for the $1.5 billion Plan for Transformation, a nationally-significant revitalization effort to create or rehab 25,000 new public housing units. White has served as Chief of Staff for the Chicago Transit Board, directed the initial phases of Chicago’s $100 million Empowerment Zone program, supervised the City of Chicago’s CitySpace program, and, as the founding executive director of the non-profit Friends of the Chicago River, led the creation of the Chicago River Urban Design Guidelines.

With this broad range of experience and accomplishments, White will bring a holistic approach to her new assignment. She holds a Masters degree in urban studies from Loyola University and a Bachelors degree in communication studies from Northwestern University.

Since 1972, The Trust for Public Land has worked with willing landowners, community groups, and national, state, and local agencies to complete more than 2,700 land conservation projects in 46 states, protecting more than 2 million acres. TPL specializes in conservation real estate, applying its expertise in negotiations, public finance, and law, to protect land for people to enjoy as parks, greenways, community gardens, urban playgrounds, and wilderness.

TPL’s other regional accomplishments are diverse and include protection of an abandoned rail line along the Mississippi River in St. Louis that will be a trail connecting recreation-poor city neighborhoods with the region’s growing trail system, thousands of acres in the growing suburbs of northeast Illinois and northwest Indiana, and several city parks in Chicago. For more information on TPL and its work, please visit