Client Engagements


American Planning Association

On behalf of APA's Planning Advisory Service, Lynn is partnering with Plot Strategies to research and write a new PAS Report tentatively titled “The Rental Housing Opportunity: Planning for Renters and Housing Affordability.” With an expected release date in 2020, this report will help planners understand and advance their role as community housing leaders. The report will explore the historical context and current trends surrounding renters and rental housing; the challenges and opportunities for advancing housing affordability with rental housing; and the specific tools available to planners to move this work forward.


City of Akron, Ohio

The City of Akron, OH established the Office of Integrated Development (OID) in 2018 to better align the City’s community and economic development efforts. The City has engaged Spirit for Change Consulting for a 15-month process to support OID in establishing mission, core values goals, and metrics that will inform a five-year strategic framework designed to advance equity, better leverage resources, and deliver improved services to all Akron residents. In addition the process is designed to build team capacity around a new way of work to support the implementation of the five-year strategic framework.

LOCUS/Smart Growth America

LOCUS, Latin for “place,” is a national coalition of real estate developers and investors who advocate for sustainable, equitable, walkable development in America’s metropolitan areas. LOCUS engaged Spirit for Change Consulting to provide content editing and advisory services in support of a new report for the City of Somerville, MA being developed by LOCUS, in partnership with George Washington University, that creates a social equity metric and suggests strategies for community advancement based on that metric.


Make Room

Make Room is a national nonprofit organization working to expose the societal costs of the rental housing crisis and advocating for bold solutions that will end housing insecurity. Make Room engaged Spirit for Change Consulting for two distinct efforts. 

First, Spirit for Change Consulting provided advisory services to support the planning and execution of a strategic team retreat and board meeting leading to the development of a 2018 organizational strategy. Second, Spirit for Change Consulting is supporting Make Room’s signature Journalism Study Tour series by providing program planning services for the Miami, FL and Houston, TX events. The key elements of this work include scoping of regionally specific program themes, agenda development, identifying and securing speakers, and ensuring each speaker is on message. 

Reimagining the Civic Commons

Reimagining the Civic Commons is a three-year, national initiative with projects in five U.S. cities that revitalize and connect civic assets. A collaboration of national foundations and a network of local partners, the initiative is working toward four main goals: civic engagement, socioeconomic mixing, environmental sustainability and value creation. The demonstrations cities include Akron, OH; Chicago, IL; Detroit, MI; Memphis, TN; and Philadelphia, PA. The initiative is funded nationally by the JPB Foundation, Rockefeller Foundation, Kresge Foundation and the Knight Foundation.

Since 2017, Spirit for Change Consulting has supported the initiative on behalf of the Knight Foundation. Project and grant management services include representing Knight Foundation on the national steering committee and at initiative convenings; providing support to the demonstration team leaders as well as Knight program staff; and representing Knight Foundation to advance the initiative with allied organizations via speaking engagements and participation in external convenings. 

Y Combinator Research

Y Combinator Research (YCR) is a nonprofit organization that was founded in 2015 to help address problems that require a long time horizon, do not return a profit, or seek to answer open-ended questions. Their first effort is to launch a first-of-its-kind study in the U.S. on universal basic income. The study is large-scale and will require significant resources and collaboration with philanthropic and other funders. YCR engaged Spirit for Change Consulting to provide message development support, collateral review and updating, and strategic advice on approaching philanthropy.