Best. Team. Ever.

We build trust.  Our clients entrust us with their most challenging, complex projects. We make stakeholders feel acknowledged, seen, and heard.  

We listen.  Our team is approachable and personable. We ask the right questions, listen respectfully, and gather feedback.   

We are bold and courageous.  When tempers flare or issues arise, we walk toward the conflict and provide a neutral outlet for every voice.  

We are nimble and adaptable. Our experienced team ramps up swiftly and seamlessly.             

We are peacemakers.  We are experts at moving divergent individuals and groups toward a place of acceptance and resolution.

Tanya Zwahlen headshot

Tanya Mooza Zwahlen, AICP

Principal + Owner

Tanya loves designing public meetings, thinking about go-to-them strategies, and getting to know stakeholders throughout a project process. She discovered the field of city planning after reading Jane Jacob’s book, The Death and Life of Great American Cities and studied city and regional planning at Cornell University. In 2007, she established Highland Planning so she could focus on effective public engagement and urban redevelopment projects. When she’s not working, she’s mothering, taking her dog Rose for a walk, or reading an Andrea Gibson poem.

Liz Podowski King, PLA, AICP

Director of Planning + Design

Liz has experience in planning, landscape architecture, community engagement and ecology. She thoughtfully approaches every project from an interdisciplinary perspective, valuing the unique characteristics and connections of a place. Liz’s portfolio is comprised of public sector projects that advance community priorities, and she has the ability to take a project from planning through design and implementation. Her experience includes urban design, climate resiliency planning, complete streets planning and design, parks and trails design, and placemaking. Liz is driven by a passion for designing places that improve the quality of life for all. She is a talented communicator, an active listener, and has extensive experience implementing creative public engagement strategies tailored to local community needs.

Megan Morsch

Director of Marketing and Business Development & Public Engagement Project Manager

Megan is passionate about using public engagement to build trust and collaboration. She has led complex projects, managed stakeholders, and delivered results in various industries. She believes in using innovative solutions to engage communities, from creative marketing communication campaigns to new technology. Megan is a proud St. Bonaventure University graduate and lives with her family in Rochester, NY. She enjoys playing soccer, golfing, running, and home renovation projects.

Julie Boasi Highland Planning

Julie Boasi

Public Engagement Project Manager / Transportation Planner

Julie strongly believes involving members of the public in decisions that impact them. She is driven by a passion for improving our local community and giving a voice to the most vulnerable populations within it. Julie has experience in transit service planning, transit operations, GIS, and municipal government, and is skilled at collaboration, innovative thinking, communication, and operationalizing ideas.  She holds a BS degree from Cornell University and a Master of Public Administration from Syracuse University. Julie lives in Brockport, NY with her husband, two sons, and two dogs, and volunteers with Flower City Habitat for Humanity in her spare time.

Nora Culhane Friedel Highland Planning

Nora Culhane Friedel

Assistant Project Manager

Nora was drawn to the planning profession through her years of experience in neighborhood revitalization, economic development, and community engagement. She has assisted communities throughout New York State undertake a range of public and private sector projects/plans. She is passionate about equitable access and inclusive planning practices. Nora lives in the Capital Region with her husband, child, and their two dogs. 

 

Stephanie Hyde

Engagement Associate

Stephanie has always been passionate about community, specifically with staying updated on the latest local news in Rochester. With a degree in journalism from University at Albany, she learned the importance of listening to what people have to say and telling their story in an impactful way. She believes the best part of an interview is coming away with a new perspective that you might never have learned if you hadn’t talked to someone. Stephanie is excited to gain more public service experience interacting with different communities. When she is not working, Stephanie enjoys running, reading and DJing the most exhilarating wedding dance floor.

Julie Hayden Highland Planning

Julia Hayden

Engagement Associate

With a passion for urban design and community building, she’s excited to work for an organization supporting Rochester’s growth as a diverse, vibrant, and sustainable community. She is studying for a Master of Urban Planning at the University of Buffalo. Her academic background is also in environmental studies and botany. At the same time, professionally, she has worked in event planning and meeting facilitation as an administrative business partner at a life sciences company. Julia lives in the South Wedge with her partner and six chickens. She enjoys exploring Rochester by bike, taking classes at the Flower City Arts Center and Eastman Community Music School, and attending Rochester’s many festivals.

Malikk Truitt

Engagement Associate

Malikk has always had an affinity for interacting with the community around him and naturally translates that into gathering public feedback meaningfully as projects unfold. He also has a wealth of experience in various general maintenance positions and mixes paint at a local hardware store. When he is not working, there is a great chance you will see him rollerblading or biking around Rochester.

Rose

Rose Zwahlen

Office Dog

Rose is a rescue from Texas who arrived in New York in May 2020. She enjoys looking out the window at the Geck Plumbing parking lot, treats, napping on the couch, greeting whoever is coming in the door, and going for walks at lunchtime.

Our Core Values

Let's see what we can create together.

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