Testimonials

It was a true honor to have Dr. Katherine Loflin as the keynote speaker at our Creative Placemaking Summit in fall 2016. She was absolutely wonderful to work with—full of passion and exuberance for the topic of placemaking, and her desire to work with us at every level in advance of the event was greatly appreciated. 

Katherine’s strong message about why people choose to live where they live was engaging and lively, and she really spoke to the message of our organization about why place is important and what that means for creating strong communities where people want to stay.

Everyone in our organization enjoyed working with her, and we hope to have the opportunity to do so again. She is joy to work with and a true inspiration, not to mention just a whole lot of fun to be around.

Mr. Josh Holliday                                                                                               Program Manager                                                                                               Arts Council of Greater Lansing                                                                       Lansing, Michigan

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City of Airdrie Staff, Leadership, Businesses, and Community Leaders were introduced to internationally renowned placemaking speaker, Dr. Katherine Loflin on May 12.  Dr. Loflin spoke at three different City of Airdrie events: City-wide staff event, Business Community luncheon, and the Volunteer of the Year awards, offering a narrative about place attachment, and the role we each play in weaving the fabric of a strong, attractive community.  Thanks to Dr. Loflin, all three audiences left inspired, aware, and motivated to make their mark on placemaking within the City of Airdrie.  

I have never seen City staff so engaged in a speaker before, and am so proud of the discussions that were had and continue to be had by our organization. Dr. Loflin truly helped to create an environment where we as City staff can better define how our work is connected to why residents to choose to live in, and love Airdrie.  Dr. Loflin was professional, pleasant and accommodating, offering up true southern charm, and we sincerely hope that she will return to Airdrie and help us continue our path towards a truly authentic Airdrie.

Ms. Kim Harris
City of Airdrie Community Development
Shay Barker
City of Airdrie Economic Development                                                           Airdrie, Alberta, Canada

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Dr. Katherine Loflin’s ability to condense the difficult and often cloudy worlds of placemaking, economic development, and talent attraction into simple, easy-to-remember, and actionable statements and stories makes her and her work such a resource to any community wanting to grow and change.   Dr. Loflin has been to Fort Wayne multiple times over the past decade, first through working with the Knight Foundation’s Soul of the Community Poll, but and much to her credit, she continued that relationship and showed (and shows) her commitment to the well-being of our city by being available to check in and give us much needed advice along the way and across many different kinds of projects.  Most recently, Dr. Loflin returned to kick off the inaugural Design Week Fort Wayne and give her unique spin on how and why we need to take heed to the authentic voice of our community while we are designing its future.

Mr. Daniel Swartz
Executive Director, Wunderkammer Company
Fort Wayne, Indiana

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Dr. Loflin has been an inspiring influence in our community ever since we had the pleasure of hearing her message of placemaking at Workplace Revolution in Spring 2015. So strong did her message move our souls, we decided we couldn’t stop there. As the Corridor explores how diversity, inclusion and the value in belonging fits into the next chapter of our story, Katherine has been our fearless leader. From point A in determining our diversity forum purpose, through sorting and transcribing our various supporting evidence, to immersing herself in our current conditions by hosting authentic conversations with various community representatives, Katherine provided us the greatest gift possible-the big picture why along with the how and what it will take for us to keep the pieces moving forward. Her genuine passion in her work is infectious, complete  with an ongoing invitation to join in, step up and get building-together. I can’t thank her enough for this game changing experience.  

Ms. Quinn Pettifer                                                                                             Community Outreach and Engagement Manager, The Gazette                 Cedar Rapids, Iowa

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I want to thank Dr. Loflin for the amazing presentation she gave to our organization, Aspire Johnson County, as part of our Community Conversation series.   Aspire is a program of Johnson County Development. Dr. Loflin worked with the leadership team prior to the event and took the time to understand our county, our goals, and our current needs. She then detailed her presentation to the work we are doing and gave us an excellent education on the value of placemaking. She was a remarkable facilitator for our group discussion, a discussion that continued after the event was over and through the next few days.

Dr. Loflin was very genuine in her comments to us, telling us what we needed to hear, not necessarily what we wanted to hear. She did not shy away from the challenges we face, but encouraged us and gave us tools to use to meet these challenges. The attendees left with the can-do attitude the organization needs. We will certainly use the information she presented and are very fortunate to have had the time with her.

Ms. Dana Monson                                                                                             Director of Business Development, Johnson County Development Corp.

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I recently had the great pleasure of working with Dr. Katherine Loflin securing her as the keynote speaker for our annual Tourism and Economic Development Symposium.  Her presentation on place making resonated deeply with our audience as could be seen from their reaction during her address; and, through the overwhelmingly positive feedback we’ve received since the event.  Her easy-going style and sense of humor coupled with her command of the research and data made for a very engaging and entertaining presentation.  Without doubt Dr. Loflin was the perfect choice to reinforce the theme of our symposium regarding the importance of place, community involvement and civic recognition as an integral part of our economic development strategy.  Her presentation exceeded all of our expectations and created an explosion of Tweets by attendees beaming with pride and a renewed sense of community.

 I would highly recommend Dr. Loflin as a keynote speaker.  She is very easy to work with, spent time learning about our area and our programs in order to focus her presentation; and, eagerly engaged our local media before the event helping generate an incredibly positive buzz, which lead to a significant increase in attendance over past years.

Mr. Ted Willey, EcD, CEcD                                                                                   Tourism & Economic Development, Norfolk County: Ontario’s South Coast

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On behalf of Christian Duval, President of the Chair,  David Aboulkheir, Director of the Place Marketing Forum, Agathe Malkani, project manager at the Chair, and myself, we wish to extend our congratulations for your award, and to thank you very much for your availability and the high quality of your intervention as keynote speaker and Master Class teacher of the Place Marketing Forum 2014. This was a great honour and pleasure to have you as guest of Honour for this second edition of this conference.

You will probably be delighted to learn that all participants stressed the remarkable quality of the speakers as one of the most positive aspects of this event. They also praised your intervention as visionary and very inspiring.

Mr. Joël Gayet                                                                                                     Directeur de la Chaire, “Attractivité et Nouveau Marketing Territorial”

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The Grant County Economic Growth Council has a 25 year tradition of hosting an Annual Celebration Banquet.  The banquet attracts a broad cross section of community leaders; befitting such an event, the Growth Council always seeks keynote speakers capable of engaging this multi-dimensional audience. Past speakers have included Indiana Governors, President of Ford Aerospace, and numerous national thought leaders.  Katherine Loflin was a rarity among keynote speakers not only in delivering a timely message but one with numerous local examples.   Thus, Katherine motivated and pointed a way forward based on past local achievements. 

Mr. Tim Eckerle                                                                                                   Executive Director, Grant County Economic GROWTH Council

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IMG_7486There are several comments coming in as having the “Keynote speaker” (aka…YOU) noted as the highlight of the whole shebang.  

Note and comment from Lorree Duczek, Coordinator of the 2013 AKBLG Conference

Thought provoking and informative! Dr. Loflin is a first class speaker with lots to share.               –Ross Beddoes, Town of Creston

Dr. Loflin, overcame the loss of the powerpoint presentation with grace and talent – a great reflection on her character and professionalism.

Dr. Loflin is an exceptional person. Her ability to soldier on through the breakdown of the system proved how well she knows her subject….she kept it together in a most professional way [when the IT system broke down], gaining the respect of all of us.

I believe the Dr. hit the nail on the head…and also what a stand up job [she did] in some very difficult situations.

I was impressed by her ability to keep going with her presentation through the technical difficulties, she also made it interesting with her side comments, also found the information very interesting.  –Mary Giuliano Mayor City of Fernie

Comments from Municipal Leaders and Staff at the 2013 AKBLG Conference

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Just wanted to send a word of thanks for the incredible job you did at our Urban Summit.  We knew your message would resonate with the audience, but your sincere, engaging and informed delivery just put it over the top.  Not only did the audience immediately grasp the importance and potential of placemaking in their corporate planning, but you obviously made a personal connection.  One attendee said she was on the verge of tears by the end of your presentation because your message brought out such strong feelings of how attached she is to our place.  I think we’ve started a powerful process for change and you are an important part of that.

Mr. Craig Pollett
CEO, Municipalities of Newfoundland and Labrador

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Several unsolicited comments indicated that our participants really enjoyed it, and found it to be valuable food for thought. They also were particularly fond of your easygoing style & manner of presenting in a highly engaging way….One colleague [attending from another country]  was absolutely captivated by your talk…you will most likely be hearing from him, if you haven’t already, because he told me he intended to call you to discuss further.

Sandy Harris
Corporate Director, Global Inclusion, Diversity & Engagement
Medtronic Inc.
(Medronic Inc. is a Fortune 500 company based in Minneapolis, MN)

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I left the summit telling myself that I will do everything to make “Place making” a focus area so that we build communities that give an identity, and therefore pride, and therefore ownership, and therefore striving collectively to make it better!  In our context this would be employee engagement.

Medtronic Inc. Manager attending Staff Summit in Minneapolis

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We hosted Katherine for a business and community audience of 175 and she blew us away with her knowledge of place-making and her superb presentation style. We’ve had only positive feedback from our network since her presentation with some organizing a return engagement. Not only is she a great presenter, she’s also a pleasure to work with!

Michael Fotheringham
Calgary Economic Development

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Dr. Katherine Loflin is an insightful expert who has elevated the conversation about the soul of place. Her passion for placemaking, civic engagement and community practice is refreshing. Dr. Loflin is an illuminating voice on why place matters and what we can do to make our communities better.

Mitchell Silver, AICP
President, American Planning Association
2011-2013


Dr. Loflin has the rare ability to both understand and easily explain complex topics, such as placemaking. Her background “in the field” and as a broadcaster make her a powerful spokesperson. With her demeanor and personality it makes it easy for the audience to connect with her.

Joe Borgstrom
Director, Downtown & Community Services Division
Michigan State Housing Development Authority


Before launching an initiative around placemaking and the role it plays in retaining young talent in our community, The Miami Foundation secured Dr. Loflin’s expertise in this subject and has greatly benefited from her insight and guidance. Simply put, we never could have gotten this initiative off the ground without her leadership and direction.

Javier Soto
CEO of The Miami Foundation


Katherine Loflin shared the Soul of the Community research with a very influential audience in Charlottesville. We received very positive feedback about her presentation and really appreciate the effort she took to learn about our community. The research findings were presented in a way our community could easily relate to and apply to our own challenges.

Brian Wheeler, Executive Director
Charlottesville Tomorrow


A very good conference … Katherine Loflin was especially inspiring!

Keynotes like Dr. Loflin … really motivate delegates for the remainder of their day.

Dr. Katherine Loflin … is now a kind of Conference hero for me.

Delegates’ comments from the Federation of Canadian Municipalities 2012 Sustainable Communities Conference