Lou Turner

Lou Turner was principal grant writer for the AALPI Steering Committee. He is currently Clinical Assistant Professor in the Department of Urban & Regional Planning and the College of Fine & Applied Arts at the University of Illinois Urbana-Champaign. From 2008 to 2017, he was Director of Undergraduate and Graduate Studies in the Department of African American Studies at the University of Illinois at Urbana-Champaign. Previously, he was assistant professor of sociology, for 14 years, at North Central College, in Naperville, Illinois where he taught social theory, criminology, public policy, racial and ethnic relations, and urban sociology. In addition to teaching, Mr. Turner was the Director of Research and Public Policy for the Developing Communities Project, on Chicago’s far South Side (2000-2014), where he guided the community organization’s strategic and public policy work for the $2.4 billion mass transit capital project to extend the CTA (Chicago Transit Authority) Red Line from 95th Street to the City limits at 130th Street. Turner facilitated numerous public transportations studies on the Red Line Extension with University of Illinois-Chicago’s Voorhees Center, the Metropolitan Planning Council, the Chicago Metropolitan Agency for Planning, and Center for Neighborhood Technology, funded by the Regional Transportation Authority, Chicago Community Trust, the Woods Fund and other foundations and governmental agencies. He also organized a successful campaign to place a policy referendum on the Red Line Extension on the 2004 ballot where it received the largest vote total of any referendum in Chicago. The synergy of public policy and community organizing that Lou Turner modeled in his work with DCP garnered the Chicago Donors Forum’s Community Organizing Award for DCP, in 2007. He earned his BFA from Oberlin College, Oberlin, Ohio.