Quality of Place Conference


2018 Quality of Place Conference, Preserving Neighborhoods in Poverty

2018 Quality of Place Conference, Preserving Neighborhoods in Poverty

Richmond Columbian Properties, William G. Scott House

Thursday September 27, 2018, Registration starting at 8:00 A.M., Sessions begin at 9:00 A.M.

204 North 10th Street Richmond, Indiana

$35.00, Reservations through Eventbrite

Michael Tomlan

Michael A. Tomlan directs the graduate program in historic preservation planning. He teaches classes that deal with documentation techniques, fieldwork, preservation practice and urban change, the relationships between museums and the public, and preservation, planning, and religion.

Tomlan is also the director of graduate studies in real estate. In that program, he serves as chair of the admissions committee, faculty editor of the Cornell Real Estate Review, and facilitates the entry of Cornell Baker Program in Real Estate graduate students in the annual real estate finance competition.

Tomlan served for a decade as chair of the Senior Board of Advisers to the Global Heritage Fund (Palo Alto, California), reviewing nominations for and the management of conservation projects in Asia, the Middle East, and Central and South America. He has consulted on projects abroad for the World Monuments Fund, the J. Paul Getty Trust, and domestic redevelopments in Arizona, Illinois, Indiana, Maryland, New Jersey, New York, Pennsylvania, and Tennessee. Additionally, Tomlan is current chair of the board of Yosothor, based in Cambodia; serves as a project director for the National Council for Preservation Education; and president of Historic Urban Plans, Inc., in Ithaca, New York. 

Tomlan received his B.Arch. from the University of Tennessee, his M.S.H.P. from Columbia University, and his Ph.D. from Cornell.

Olon Dotson

Olon Dotson serves as Associate Professor of Architecture at the Ball State University. He attended Tuskegee Institute (University) in Alabama where he received a B.A. in Architectural Science and Ball State University, where he acquired a Bachelor of Architecture and a Bachelor of Science in Environmental Design. Dotson later attended Columbia University in New York where he completed the Master of Science in Real Estate Development. Dotson began to broaden his perspective in architecture, which led to the co-founding of his company, ARMONICS, Inc. ARMONICS’ principal focus was in the revitalization of inner-city communities, starting in Indianapolis. ARMONICS earned national and international recognition for its progressive and innovate approach to urban revitalization initiatives.

Throughout his career in academia as well as in professional practice, Olon Dotson’s primary research interest and focus has been in the resurgence of severely distressed inner-city communities. Dotson became more philosophical and reflective with respect to the health and vitality of American cities and has elected to pursue a Ph.D. in American Studies at the Purdue University, College of Liberal Arts. Olon’s primary research interests are to explore of the institutional abandonment and massive disinvestment of America’s inner-cities. He aims to enhance students’ sense of empathy for the citizens who choose or are forced to remain in these environments, and to develop formal inquiry which will develop further understanding of inner cities as a design professional and scholar. Olon has dedicated his life and career to improving the conditions of inner-cities by effectively developing, exploring, and communicating Fourth World Theory to a wider audience through lectures and publications.

John Boner Neighborhood Center

John Boner Neighborhood Centers, a 501(c)3, was founded to serve Indianapolis’ near eastside residents. In 1971, neighborhood residents determined the need for a community center. With their help, John Boner and Dick Moore set up a card table and two folding chairs in an office on East 10th Street, and the near eastside Multi-Service Center was born. Throughout the years, our philosophy has inspired the creation of services and programs in response to the changing needs within our community. Before John Boner died in 1994, the center’s name was changed to honor the leadership and vision for the neighborhood where John Boner lived and worked.

The energy, commitment and dedication of center staff is the driving force behind our success and the unique opportunities offered to our neighbors. Through programs, services, and community development initiatives, staff help to inspire and support those who are committed to thriving towards an improved quality of life: Not just for themselves, but for the community they live in.

We believe that neighborhood-driven efforts are essential in developing a healthy, thriving and vibrant community. We provide numerous tools for change and growth for our residents and community partners. Through our work, we inspire hope and foster change to improve the lives of those we serve.

Kevin Wright

Kevin is a leader in community development, economic and real estate development finance, planning, and placemaking. Kevin’s work as Executive Director of the Walnut Hills Redevelopment Foundation (WHRF) from 2011-2018 received local honors and was featured in national publications such as The Huffington Post. It was there where he used his diverse background in storytelling and community planning to help a struggling organization develop a new brand and mission and grow from a staff of one contracted employee to seven full-time employees and several interns. Additionally, he grew the foundation’s budget ten-fold and developed a more sustainable and diverse revenue stream. Kevin has led teams in the creation and implementation of dozens of projects ranging from small creative placemaking activities to multi-million dollar real estate deals. These projects have included several public and private partners and a diverse set of public financing tools such as Tax Increment Financing, public loans/grants, and Historic Tax Credits. Kevin earned a Bachelor’s degree in journalism from Missouri State University and received a Master’s Degree in Community Planning from the University of Cincinnati with a specialization in urban real estate and neighborhood development. Kevin serves locally on the Board of The Community Development Corporations Association of Greater Cincinnati, Cincinnati Neighborhood Business Districts United, is a member of the Urban Land Institute and was recently named to the 40 under 40 by The Cincinnati Business Courier. knows and gets excited about it.

Quality of Place Conference


Links to videos of past Quality of Place Conferences


Ronald D. Stegall, International Community Development, Robert Koester, CERES Ball STate University, Christian Vassi, Sustainable Development 2017


ED McMahon, Senior Fellow Urban Land Institute 2017


Eddy Kwon, My Cincinnati, Transitional Music Education 2017


Tamar Shapiro, Center for Community Progress 2016


Colin Compton, Cleveland Restoration Society 2016


Marsh Davis, Indiana Landmarks 2016


Colete Chidress, OCRA; Scott Zimmerman, Center City Development


Emilie Evans, Placeeconomics 2015


John Marrow and Drew Klacik Indiana University Public Policy Institute 2015


Ken Smith, Price Hill Will Cincinnati, Ohio 2015


State Senator Jim Merritt 2015

2018 Quality of Place Conference

The Quality of Place Conference is held in September. Watch for dates and the schedule of speakers.