Horizon Awards

T.J. Fish, AICP

T.J. Fish

Hired in 2005 as the first executive director of the Lake-Sumter Metropolitan Planning Organization (MPO), T.J. heads a federally-funded regional transportation planning agency covering all public modes of moving people and goods. An urban and regional planner certified by the American Institute of Certified Planners (AICP), his current duties include the coordination of regional transportation planning for the two counties and 19 municipalities in the Lake-Sumter region.

Working for a regional board of elected officials, T.J. and his six-member staff coordinate with local governments and state and federal agencies in planning transportation projects.  He sees his primary role as working with his board to build consensus on funding priorities.  He has helped guide 10 years of transportation projects in the two-county region, leading him to see himself more as an implementer of projects than a planner of projects.  He places a strong emphasis on the connection between economic development and the investment of transportation dollars.

Prior to the MPO, he provided planning consulting services to the four Lake County municipalities of Lady Lake, Minneola, Monteverde and Astatula and he spent two years as the staff planner for Tavares.  Born in Johnson City, TN, he completed undergraduate and graduate work at East Tennessee State University.  After college, he gained governmental experience in roles including previous MPO work for two Tennessee counties, for the State of Tennessee planning for multiple communities and as economic development director for Martin, TN.