Board of Directors

About DVSGA » Board of Directors » Brian O'Leary, AICP

Brian O'Leary, AICP

Brian O’Leary is currently the Executive Director for the Chester County Planning Commission where he manages commission staff which works on smart growth, land use, comprehensive planning, revitalization, housing, site design, historic preservation, open space, transportation, trails, and pipelines. Before this position, he was the section chief of county planning for the Montgomery County Planning Commission, where he worked on county-wide issues involving land use, economic development, agriculture, and arts and culture. He was the project manager for the county comprehensive plan and has over 25 years of experience drafting a variety of planning studies, including comprehensive plans, open space plans, model zoning ordinance guidebooks, and zoning and subdivision ordinances. His recent model zoning ordinances focused on creating walkable, mixed use developments.

Through his work in local planning, Brian has seen the importance of smart growth. With smart growth, new development is focused towards existing communities, helping these places revitalize, improve their infrastructure, and create vibrant and healthy neighborhoods. Without smart growth, farmland is lost, people’s transportation choices are limited, and the economy suffers.

Brian has a BA in international relations from Johns Hopkins University and an MBA in real estate/urban land studies from Temple University. He discovered his love of places and cities while going to school in Baltimore, where he witnessed firsthand the transformation of the Inner Harbor, and Bologna, Italy, where he saw how walkable a city could be. He is currently the past president of the Pennsylvania Chapter of the American Planning Association and the government board representative for the Delaware Valley Smart Growth Alliance.