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Richard L. Levey, Ph.D., AICP

  • Outcome-focused strategist, advising business and government in mission-critical programs

  • Experienced change management and business process improvement leader with proven success in organizational transformation 

  • Distinguished career in high profile and large-scale public and private sector project planning and execution

  • Effective collaborator in convening stakeholders to achieve consensus on complicated issues



2012 - Present

Assist local government managers with strategy, leadership initiatives, and plan execution in the areas of financial management, operations, process improvement, change management, and economic development policy.

Provide strategic advisory services to public and private sector clients in establishing and executing plans for mixed-use districts, master planned communities and specialized employment centers. Expertise includes property entitlements, economic development and job creation, land development strategy, land planning, comprehensive permitting, and governmental relations.  Current projects include a +/- 24,000-acre master planning, pro-forma development, and entitlement program for Sunbridge, a new master planned community venture between Suburban Land Reserve, Inc. and Tavistock Development Company in Orange and Osceola Counties, Florida.  Recently completed plans for a new downtown and waterfront master plan for the City of Clermont, Florida, the St. Petersburg Innovation District, Wolf Branch Innovation District, and the Green Cities Miami Health and Wellness District.  Providing strategic advisory services to the cities of Kissimmee, Clermont, Belle Isle, and Mount Dora, Florida.

VICE PRESIDENT:  Lake Nona Property Holdings, LLC

                                      Orlando, FL

2007 - 2012 

Directed the master planning and re-entitlement of the 7,000-acre Lake Nona DRI into the ‘Medical City’ Master Planned Community.  Responsible for all entitlement, community design, governmental relations, environmental permitting, development permitting, asset management and community governance programs.  Assisted the company in positioning itself in attracting new employment in all sectors, including healthcare, biotech, and medical education.  Facilitated the recruitment and development of the VA Medical Center Orlando, Nemours Children’s Hospital, Sanford-Burnham Institute for Medical Research, UCF College of Medicine and Valencia State College.     

DIRECTOR OF ENTITLEMENTS:  Donald W. McIntosh Associates, Inc. 

                                                                 Winter Park, FL

2005 - 2007 

Managed the company’s land entitlement process throughout a seven-county central Florida region.  Achieved governmental approvals for numerous commercial, residential, industrial, and mixed-use projects from conceptualization through final development orders.  Major clientele included national and regional homebuilders. 


                                                                       Orlando, FL

1999 - 2005

Directed the day-to-day operations of Orlando’s full-service municipal government by implementing the policy and regulatory directives of the Mayor and City Council.  Responsible for 3,200 employees, including police, fire, public works, utilities, growth management, parks, recreation, project/construction management, and stadium/arena. 

Areas of specialization include the following:

  • Public Sector Management, Transparency, and Fiscal Control

  • Economic Development, Public-Private Partnerships and Job Creation

  • Land Entitlements, Development Orders, and Development Agreements

  • Comprehensive Planning, Neighborhood Change, and Affordable Housing

  • Land Development and Environmental Permitting

  • Public and Private Sector Infrastructure Finance

  • Urban Design and Placemaking

  • Organizational Leadership, Re-engineering, and Change Management

Significant Initiatives:

  • Instituted benchmarking and performance measures into annual budgeting and operational reporting processes.

  • Overhauled the development review and permitting system into a new collaborative design model, eliminating the traditional ‘silo’ approach in local government. 

  • Orchestrated an aggressive municipal expansion program resulting in the City adding nearly 15 square miles to its corporate limits, marking an unprecedented period in the City’s evolution as a regional hub of political and economic activity.  

  • Redevelopment of the Naval Training Center (NTC) Orlando into the Baldwin Park master planned community

  • Creative utilization of Tax Increment Finance tools to construct Interstate 4 interchanges, which facilitated the development of the Mall at Millenia and Universal Studios Florida.

Other Positions with the City of Orlando

Economic Development Director (dual role as Chief Administrative Officer)            

Deputy Chief Administrative Officer                                                                                

Bureau Chief of City Planning                                                                                         

2003 - 2005

1992 - 1999

1986 - 1992

Other Positions in Florida and Colorado

Alachua County Government, Gainesville, FL         

Alachua County Government, Gainesville, FL                                                      Camp, Dresser & McKee, Inc. Consultants, Denver, CO                                                                                      

Chief Planner, 1982 - 1986

Planner, 1981 - 1982

Environmental Planner, 1980 - 1981


GRADUATE FACULTY SCHOLAR:  College of Graduate Studies at the University of Central Florida (UCF), February 2020 to present. 

ADJUNCT INSTRUCTOR:  School of Public Administration, University of Central Florida (UCF), August 2012 to present.  Sample courses:

PAD 4331 – Land Use and Planning – Spring 2013; Overall Assessment Evaluation - Outstanding 


PAD 4331 – Public Sector Project Management – Spring 2018; Overall Assessment Evaluation - Outstanding

PAD 6035 – Public Administration and the Policy Process – Fall 2018, Summer 2019


PAD 6053 – Public Administrators in the Governance Process – Spring 2019, Fall 2019

TEACHING ASSISTANTSHIP:  College of Liberal Arts and Sciences, Arizona State University, Tempe, Arizona, Summer 1979 – Fall of 1980.  Assisted Professor John F. Lounsbury, Ph.D.  Course taught:  Undergraduate Urban Geography.


Ph.D. IN PUBLIC AFFAIRS:  College of Health and Public Affairs, University of Central Florida, Orlando, Florida, 2015 

FIELD:  Governance and Policy Research 

DISSERTATION: “The Impact of the Great Recession of 2008 on Local Government Policy in Florida"                                                                                                                       

MASTER OF ARTS (MA) in GEOGRAPHY:  College of Liberal Arts and Sciences, Arizona State University, Tempe Arizona, 1980.   National Science Foundation (NSF) Program in the Spatial Analysis of Land Use

BACHELOR OF ARTS (BA) in GEOGRAPHY/URBAN STUDIES:  Wittenberg University, Springfield, Ohio, 1979 Cum Laude


PROGRAM FOR SENIOR EXECUTIVES IN STATE AND LOCAL GOVERNMENT:  Kennedy School of Government, Harvard University, Cambridge, MA 1995


Levey, R., Connors, A. & Martin, L. (2020) Public University Use of Social Infrastructure Public-Private Partnerships (P3s):  An Exploratory Examination.  Public Works Management & Policy, 25(3) 298-311.


Levey, R.  (2015)  The Great Recession:  Cities stand firm in their policy approach.  Quality Cities, 89(3), p.39-40.


Cawley, J., Levey, R., & Martin, L. (2012). The "New Normal" for Local Government. State of Local Government Review, 44(2), 17S -28S.


“Obstacles and objections regarding the implementation of sustainable landscapes, the potential benefits and values for the real estate industry, and the key metrics, incentives of financial drivers which would have the greatest impact on shifting developer behavior" presented at OUTSIDE: Sustainable Landscape Collaborative 2020, October 22, 2020

Landscape & Sustainability in Large Scale Development"  presented at Outside 2020 - A 1000 Friends of Florida Webinar, Lake County Florida, April 24, 2020


"Social Infrastructure P3’s for Public University Facilities in the United States” presented at the International Public-Private Partnership Scholars Network (IP3SN) Orlando, Florida, May 16-17, 2019


“The Importance of the Wolf Branch Innovation District to the Economic Future of Lake County” presented at Mount Dora 2019, Mount Dora, Florida, January 24, 2019


“The Sausage Making of Large-Scale Land Development:  What happens before you see the rezoning sign” presented at University of Florida/IFAS Initiative for Enhancing and Protecting Water Quality, Quantity and Supply, Winter Haven, Florida, April 27, 2017.


 “The Evolution of Miami-Dade County’s Two-Tier Government:  Have the Original Objectives been Conserved?” presented at the 45th Annual Conference of the Urban Affairs Association, Miami Florida, April 10, 2015


“Entitlement Battle Strategies” presented to the Association of Florida Community Developers Legislative Meeting, Tallahassee, Florida, February 19, 2015.

“The Impact of the Great Recession on Florida’s Cities” presented at the Annual Municipal Research Symposium of the Florida League of Cities, Hollywood, Florida, August 13, 2014.

“Planning for Large Scale Development” presented to the Environmental & Land Use Law Section of the Florida Bar, Orlando, Florida, May 8, 2014.

“Creating Jobs:  Human Capital as an Economic Driver” presented to the Urban Land Institute, Phoenix, Arizona, May 19, 2011


“Wolf Branch Innovation District” An Implementation Plan for an Employment Center in Lake County, Florida, August 2019

 “St. Petersburg Innovation District – A Place of Innovation, Collaboration and Opportunity” Visioning Summary, September 15, 2015. 

“Enhance Connect Grow” The City of Clermont Downtown & Waterfront Master Plan, March 23, 2015.

“Health and Wellness Village Employment Sector Plan” Green City Miami, Miami-Dade County, Florida, June 7, 2015 


  • Chair, Poitras East Improvement District, 2018 to present

  • Chair, Sunbridge Stewardship District, 2017 to present

  • Chair, Greeneway Improvement District, 2007 to present

  • Chair, Boggy Creek Improvement District, 2007 to present

  • Chair, 2015 & 2017 Association of Florida Community Developers Districts & Associations Task Force

  • Vice Chair, Sunshine State Governmental Finance Commission, 2002-2005

  • Chair, City of Orlando Ethics Advisory Board, 1995 -1998

  • Corporate Officer for multiple Tavistock and Lake Nona entities


  • Graduate Faculty Scholar, University of Central Florida, 2020

  • Urban Land Institute (ULI)

  • Association of Florida Community Developers (AFCD)

  • University of Central Florida, School of Public Administration, Adjunct Instructor, 2012 – present

  • University of Central Florida, School of Public Administration, Public Administration Advisory Board

  • International City/County Management Association (ICCMA)

  • American Institute of Certified Planners (AICP)

  • Association of American Geographers (AAG)

  • Graduate of Leadership Florida Class XIV, 1995

  • University of Wisconsin, Adjunct Instructor, 1992-1995

  • Graduate of Leadership Orlando, 1990

  • American Planning Association (APA) ‑ Florida Chapter 

    • Vice President for Professional Development, 1990 ‑1992

    • Award of Merit, 1986

    • Founding Chairman, San Felasco Section, 1985 -1986

    • Legislative Policy Committee, 1986

  •    Florida Planning and Zoning Association (FPZA), Secretary-Treasurer, 1987 - 1989

  •    National Association of Counties (NACO) National Achievement Award, 1986

  •    Florida Planning and Zoning Association Outstanding Innovation Award, 1986

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