McKenna Announces Transition Plan to Secure Its Tradition of Excellence

For Immediate Release

June 15, 2016; Northville, Ml: Today McKenna, Michigan’s largest and long-established community planning consulting firm announced a transition plan to ensure it is well-positioned to provide excellent planning and municipal services to Midwest communities for years to come. The firm’s owner and president, Phillip C. McKenna, AICP, announced the sale of the firm to Executive Vice President and 19-year McKenna veteran, John R. Jackson, AICP, a move both planners insist will perpetuate the firm’s tradition of exceptional planning and service to municipalities.

“It is with enormous pride that I announce this transition plan, designed to ensure McKenna will remain at its core, a community planning and municipal services firm, just as it has been for the past 38 years,” said McKenna.

At a time when other planning firms are being absorbed by businesses specializing in non-planning services, McKenna will remain first and foremost a planning and design firm, with a growing building services department.

“I’m extremely pleased to be handing the reins to John Jackson, a gifted planner with whom I’ve worked side by side for almost two decades,” said McKenna. “John brings creative solutions to communities across the region. I know John will continue our history of excellence, outstanding client service and unwavering integrity.”

In making the announcement to staff, Jackson said his highest priority is perpetuating the firm’s culture and tradition of excellence. Jackson, who purchased the company with his wife, Kathleen, said the firm will continue to be called McKenna.

“After almost 20 years of serving McKenna clients and working closely with my mentor and dear friend, Phil McKenna, it is my honor and privilege to step to the helm to steer this company to its bright future,” said Jackson. “Phil has been a great teacher on many levels and I’m honored to continue the legacy of excellence, begun by Phil and perpetuated by our team of hard-working, innovative and caring professionals.”

Together Jackson and McKenna shared practical aspects of the plan. Immediately, Jackson will transition to owner with McKenna remaining in the role of president for at least three months to ensure continuity. Later McKenna will continue to work onsite as a sub consultant, advising the firm on issues of strategy and providing client services as Jackson transitions to the role of president.

“I’m thrilled Phil will continue to share his wisdom and experience as a vital part of the firm, while enjoying the less rigorous schedule he has more than earned,” said Jackson.

“Over four decades, McKenna has been renowned for its exceptional team of talented, visionary and committed professionals and staff,” said Jackson. “This plan should assure each of our employees and every one of our highly valued client communities and institutions, that our tradition and culture of excellence will continue for many years to come.”

Phil McKenna has led McKenna for 30 years, since purchasing the firm from the prominent urban designer Chris Wzacny in 1986. McKenna has a workforce of more than 45 community planners, designers, landscape architects, building professionals and administrative staff.

McKenna provides community planning and design, zoning, landscape architecture, building inspection and other municipal services to nearly 100 communities across the Midwest. McKenna is headquartered in Northville, Ml and has branch offices in Kalamazoo and Detroit. For more on McKenna, call 248.596.0920.

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