27 Sep 23

Von Eckartsberg appointed Vice President of Urban Design Forum

Woods Bagot Urban Design Leader (Australia & New Zealand) Heinz von Eckartsberg has been appointed Vice President of the Urban Design Forum for 2023/24.

The forum’s annual general meeting (AGM) was held in August, during which Katherine Sundermann was also named the next president, succeeding former president Leanne Hodyl, and Audrey Leonore Lopez the new secretary and treasurer.  

The Urban Design Forum is a non-profit organisation supporting public interest outcomes in Australian cities, advocating for the role communities can play in addressing major environmental and social challenges since 1986.

UDF is informed by three key pillars: creating a supportive network of urban designers and allied professionals; sharing knowledge on best practice urbanism; and researching and advocating for better urban education, systems and outcomes.

Von Eckartsberg was previously an elected committee member and secretary on the forum. In his new post as vice president, von Eckartsberg will represent the forum in media and speaking opportunities, advocate for best practice urbanism, educate supporters through workshops and knowledge building, and help garner a wider membership base through industry engagement.  

Alongside the president, Von Eckartsberg will represent the forum to uphold a visible independent advisory presence in the public eye, holding committee meetings and streamlining various subcommittees.  

Over the last year, UDF has grown its membership base through events and programs; shared knowledge through public events and media appearances; and advocating for change through numerous government submissions. Von Eckartsberg intends to continue the forum’s trajectory through advocacy like the recently released Victorian Planning Reform: Re-framing urban design at the heart of liveability as well as education and knowledge building through events like Practice Forum, and the upcoming MPavilion event: Place as Protagonist on 5 December. 

“I am honoured to support Katherine Sundermann as Vice President this year, with a focus on growing the impact of UDF, involving our members further through a range of events and growing our influence toward holistic urban design within planning policy,” says von Eckartsberg.

“I look forward to the year ahead with this exceptional group of people to expand on the impact of Urban Design Forum Australia as a platform for elevating public interest outcomes in our cities.”Von Eckartsberg also thanked former UDF President Leanne Hodyl for her guidance and leadership over the past year.

The Urban Design Forum 2023/2024 committee comprises Katherine Sundermann (President); Heinz von Eckartsberg (Vice President); Audrey Lopez (Secretary and Treasurer); Alison Potter; Amanda Roberts; Andy Fergus; Ben Thorp; David Morison; Ella McDonald; Gunali Ajgaonkar; Mrunal Venkatakrishnan; William Priestley.

Media enquiries
Isla Sutherland
Content and Communications Specialist (Australia & New Zealand)

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