Inspiring Minds CONFAB: A Dallas Parks Foundation Conversation

Inspiring Minds CONFAB

CONFAB: A Dallas Parks Foundation Conversation


The Dallas Parks Foundation, in partnership with the Dallas Parks & Recreation Department, is taking over the Dallas City Performance Hall on May 14, 2015 for CONFAB: an engaging conversation series offering a look at public spaces, hiking & biking and recreation.


Event Chair and Dallas Parks Foundation Board Member Jorge Esteban said, “Last year’s event was very successful, and I’m excited about helping make the third year of CONFAB even better. CONFAB vol. 3 attendees will get updates on the Dallas Bike Plan, Uptown Ciclovia, Integrated Trail Circuit and more.”


“CONFAB is such fun. The topics are current to our city and I cannot wait to hear our guest presenters Elissa Hoagland and John Alschuler from HR&A Advisors,” said Dallas Parks Foundation President Joanne Fay. “Elissa and John will discuss the economic impact that parks and trails have in an urban environment.”


Topics will include:


  • “Economic Impact of Dallas Trails and Parks” (Keynote); Speaker: Elissa Hoagland Izmailyan, Director, HR&A Advisors, Inc.

  • “High Line: New York, New York”; Speaker: John H. Alschuler, Chairman, HR&A Advisors, Inc., Emeritus Chair, Friends of the High Line

  • “Integrated Trail Circuit”; Speaker: Willis Winters, Director, Dallas Parks & Recreation Department

  • “Pedal Power – Dallas Bike Plan Update”; Speaker: Ashley Haire, Dallas Bicycle Transportation Engineer

  • “Superhighway – Bike from Dallas to Fort Worth”; Speaker: Karla Weaver, Program Manager, NCTCOG

  • “What is Philanthropy?”; Speaker: Samuel F. Stiles, Director, Dallas Parks Foundation

  • And more: “Uptown Ciclovia”, “Trees Please – The Greening of Dallas”, “Davis Cup Tie 50th Anniversary”


    CONFAB Details


  • Title: CONFAB: A Dallas Parks Foundation Conversation

  • Date: Thursday, May 14, 2015

  • Time: 7:00 p.m.

  • Location: Dallas City Performance Hall

  • Address: 2502 Flora Street, Dallas, Texas 75201

  • Cost: $13 per person, Proceeds benefit the Dallas Parks Foundation, a registered 501(c)(3) nonprofit organization.

  • Visit www.ticketdfw.com for tickets and additional event information.

  • Cash bar, $5 self-parking, cocktail casual attire



    HR&A Advisors, Inc. Keynote Bios


  • John H. Alschuler, Chairman, HR&A Advisors, Inc., Emeritus Chair, Friends of the High Line. John’s work focuses on development finance, the revitalization of urban communities, regional economic development, waterfront redevelopment and asset planning for institutions.  John’s core skills include structuring public-private partnerships, development finance, building parklands, and creating innovative development strategies.


    John’s wide-ranging practice is national and international in scope ranging from New York to Cincinnati, San Antonio to London.  His work focuses on large-scale urban transformations, as well as discrete real estate transactions.  Since founding the New York office of HR&A in 1984, he has led to bold plans that have reshaped important waterfronts, downtown districts and neighborhoods.


    John is a regularly requested speaker for conferences and events hosted by large professional organizations throughout the United States and internationally.  Recently, he has held speaking engagements for the Urban Land Institute (ULI), the New York City Bar Association, WNYC, the New London Architecture Center (NLA), and the International Skyrise Greenery Conference.


  • Elissa Hoagland Izmailyan, Director, HR&A Advisors, Inc.  Elissa’s work focuses on master plan support, including parks, cultural districts, and neighborhood plans.  She leads quantitative and qualitative analysis to identify opportunities for HR&A’s clients across North America and helps to craft actionable strategies for implementation.  Since 2012, Elissa has supported a comprehensive neighborhood real estate strategy and implementation plan for the Menil Collection, a leading contemporary art museum in Houston.  As part of the Office of Metropolitan Architecture-led team for the Rebuild by Design resiliency design competition, she managed the development of an economic impact framework and implementation approach for flood defense in Hoboken, New Jersey.  The team’s winning proposal was awarded $230-million in federal CDBG-DR funds to support a first phase of implementation.


    Elissa’s passion for public spaces is central to her work.  Since 2011, Elissa has supported the development of a funding and management strategy for Waterfront Seattle, a planned signature public space that will link Seattle’s downtown and waterfront assets.  On behalf of the Trust for Public Land, she managed the development of policy recommendations to encourage the inclusion of Privately-Owned Public Spaces in transit-oriented development along the Green Line in Minneapolis-St. Paul.  She has also managed the development of the park funding and governance strategies in Charlotte, Austin, Phoenix, Miami, and beyond.



  • Brandon Moses


    CONFAB Sponsors (As of this release May 8, 2015)


  • Advocate Magazine

  • Caye Cook & Associates

  • Dallas Area Rapid Transit (DART)

  • Dallas Sports Commission

  • Earth Day Texas 2016

  • Freese and Nichols

  • Good Signature

  • Green Bank, N.A.

  • Herb’s Paint & Body Shop

  • J.W. Sales Company

  • Joanne & Joseph Fay

  • Jorge Esteban Krewe

  • Anthony R. Page

  • Robert B. Parks

  • Quimby McCoy Preservation Architecture

  • Reddy Ice

  • Bobby Wehmeyer

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