Disciplinary Actions for Ethical Misconduct

The AICP Ethics Committee voted, in December 2021, to publish two recent disciplinary actions related to ethical misconduct. By Section E.10 of the AICP Code of Ethics and Professional Conduct, it is the sole discretion of the Ethics Committee as to whether or not to publish information on disciplinary actions and whether or not to include the names of members who have had disciplinary action imposed. The two disciplinary actions are:

Credential Suspension

The AICP credential of a local public planner was suspended — indefinitely — in October 2021, due to a violation of Rule of Conduct #25 (current Rule #6); i.e., a "wrongful act...that reflects adversely on our professional fitness." The suspension followed the AICP Ethics Officer's investigation of a misconduct complaint, which had been filed by a member of the local zoning board.

The complaint concerned a series of phone text messages the planner had sent to the board member, which included derogatory comments about a city council member, as well as a member of the public. The Ethics Committee had recommended that the planner's suspension be of "an indefinite length," because the planner previously had been suspended for one year (in 2020) for a similar violation involving social media posts and emails.

Permanent Revocation

The AICP (and FAICP) credentials of retired planning consultant Patricia D. Blackshear were permanently revoked by the Ethics Committee in December 2021, due to Ms. Blackshear's "continued misuse" of the FAICP credential on her professional LinkedIn site. Ms. Blackshear's credentials had been revoked by the Ethics Committee in 2017, due to violations of Rules of Conduct #25 and #26 (current Rules #6 and #24). Since that time, Ms. Blackshear has received numerous requests from the Ethics Officer and the Ethics Committee to delete the FAICP credential from her LinkedIn site, but she has failed to do so.

Top Image: Gettyimages/Devonyu

About the author
Jim Peters, FAICP, is the Ethics Officer for the American Institute of Certified Planners.

January 28, 2022

By James Peters, FAICP