State Planning Council

The Council oversees the Division of Statewide Planning's work. The State Planning Council adopts goals and policies related to planning, most of which are contained within individual plans, which are elements of the State Guide Plan. The Council has been designated as a Metropolitan Planning Organization (MPO) for transportation planning purposes and, as such, the Council adopts the Transportation Improvement Program, a four-year program of transportation investments.  As the Comprehensive Economic Development Strategy (CEDS) Committee for the state, the Council maintains the state's Comprehensive Economic Development Strategy and reviews and ranks projects for funding consideration by the U.S. Economic Development Administration. The body also advises the Governor on strategic planning matters.

State Planning Council

State Planning Council & Metropolitan Planning Organization Overview and Handbook
(October 2021)

The SPC/MPO handbook provides an overview of responsibilities of the Council. The handbook is to help members of the Council and others to understand the mission and functions of the State Planning Council and Statewide Planning Program. Each chapter explains a key aspect of the Council’s duties.

State Planning Council Members

There are 27 members of the State Planning Council representing a range of interests. They have created three standing committees to assist in the oversight of continuing operations: the Technical Committee, the Transportation Advisory Committee and the RIGIS Executive Committee. The State Planning Council and its three (3) standing committees follow adopted Rules and Standards.

  • James Thorsen, Chair, RI Department of Administration, Director
  • Elizabeth Winangun, Vice Chair, Policy Director, Office of the Governor
  • Meredith Brady, Secretary, Rhode Island Division of Planning, Associate Director
  • Kristen Adamo, President and CEO of the Warwick Convention & Visitors Bureau
  • Kim Ahern, Governor’s Designee, Deputy Chief of Staff, Office of the Governor
  • Ernie Almonte, RI League of Cities and Towns, Executive Director
  • Peter Alviti, RI Department of Transportation, Director
  • Scott Avedisian , CEO, RI Public Transit Authority
  • Utpala Bandy, MD, MPH, RI Department of Health, Acting Director
  • Kyle Bennett, RI Housing Resources Commission, Chair
  • Jeanne Boyle, RI League of Cities and Towns, President's Designee
  • Lisa Bryer, AICP, RI League of Cities and Towns, Local Government Representative
  • Jeanne Cola, Representative of Nonprofit Housing
  • Roy Coulombe, Public Member
  • Keri M. Cronin, Warren Town Council President, Small Community
  • Roberto DaSilva, Mayor City of East Providence, Large Community
  • Midsized Community Elected Official - Pending Appointment
  • Environmental/Justice - Pending Appointment
  • Terry Gray, RI Department of Environmental Management, Director
  • Christopher Kearns, RI Office of Energy Resources, Acting Commissioner
  • Marcus Mitchell, Small Business Representative
  • Bonnie Nickerson, AICP, City of Providence - Department of Planning and Development, Director
  • Marc Pappas, Director, RI Emergency Management Agency
  • M. James Riordan, AICP, Public Member
  • Elizabeth M. Tanner, Esq., Secretary of Commerce
  • Carol Ventura, Executive Director, RI Housing
  • Jeff Willis, RI Coastal Resources Management Council, Executive Director
  • Scott Wolf, Grow Smart RI, Environmental Advocate

For more information about the State Planning Council, including meeting schedule, agendas and minutes, please visit the Secretary of State's website and search "planning council, state".

Nancy Hess
Interdepartmental Project Manager

Phone: (401) 222-6480
Email: nancy.hess@doa.ri.gov