John M. DeGrove Eminent Scholar Chair In Growth Management and Development

The John M. DeGrove Eminent Scholar Chair in Growth Management and Development was established in 2000 in the College for Design and Social Inquiry.

The mission of the Eminent Scholar is to advance knowledge and scholarship in growth management and development and to promote the planning and implementation of smart growth initiatives.

The Eminent Scholar also works closely with the John M. DeGrove Research Library, both by utilizing its resources and advancing its collection.

Charles L. Siemon, the 2011/12 John M. DeGrove Eminent Scholar Chair in Growth Management and Development, is an attorney, planning, and planning law consultant with the law firm GrayRobinson in Boca Raton, Florida who has provided services to public and private sector clients in more than 35 states and the Commonwealth of Puerto Rico.  Mr. Siemon is the author of numerous articles and is the co-author of three books including The Zoning Game Revisited which he co-authored with his late partner Richard F. Babcock and Vested Rights: Balancing Public and Private Development Expectations with Wendy U. Larsen.

Mr. Siemon has prepared land use regulations for cities all over the country, from Aspen to North Miami, from Phoenix to Charlotte-Mecklenberg, from Lake County, Illinois to Sarasota, Florida and many communities in between.

Mr. Siemon also represents developers, particularly in the context of community redevelopment, with regard to development entitlements, both local and national firms.

Throughout his career, Mr. Siemon has been an active author and speaker including serving as a lecturer or adjunct faculty at the DePaul College of Law (5 years) and Northwestern College of Law (11 years). Mr. Siemon is a frequent speaker at planning and law conferences and continuing education programs.


The essence of the DeGrove Eminent Scholar Chair lies in Dr. DeGrove’s own work. A leading authority in planning and public administration, DeGrove directed the FAU/FIU Joint Center for Environmental and Urban Problems from 1971 to 1998 with vision and passion. He saw the Center as an applied research and public service unit that would “reach out to other state universities and, through my involvement in efforts to manage growth and change around the nation and beyond, draw ideas from national and international growth strategies.” He further summed up the task commenting on the new Eminent Scholar Chair, which he held for one year upon his retirement in 2000: "Whether it's called smart growth, building sustainable urban and rural communities, or managing growth and change, the heart of the challenge is to plan carefully for the growth that has and will continue to come in Florida.” The Chair was established in honor of Dr. DeGrove, who was a leader in growth management in Florida and the United States for decades. The original funding for the Chair came from an anonymous source and was combined with other donations and the Florida Legislature's matching gift program.

John M. DeGrove

John M. DeGrove was promoted to lieutenant via a battlefield commission and was awarded a Silver Star in World War II. He received his B.A. in History from Rollins College, M.A. in Political Science from Emory University, and Ph.D. in Public Administration from the University of North Carolina. After teaching at the University of Florida and the University of North Carolina, he joined FAU’s Department of Political Science and later served as Dean of the College of Social Sciences. From 1971 to 1998, DeGrove headed the FAU/FIU Joint Center for Environmental and Urban Problems. For over three decades he led growth management in Florida and the United States, served on state and national commissions, authored numerous books and articles, and was known as a national authority in planning and public administration. His memberships include the National Academy of Public Administration, American Planning Association, American Institute of Certified Planners (AICP), and Fellow in AICP. During his tenure as Secretary of Florida Department of Community Affairs, DeGrove served as a key player in passing the historic 1985 Growth Management Act and State Comprehensive Plan. He was a founding member and president of 1000 Friends of Florida, the state’s growth management watchdog group. In 2000, he retired from FAU as Eminent Scholar Emeritus in Growth Management and Development in the College for Design and Social Inquiry. In 2005, DeGrove returned from the trenches of growth politics with Planning Policy and Politics: Smart Growth and the States. A sequel to his 1984 Land, Growth and Politics and 1992 The New Frontier for Land Policy, this recent book is the definitive study on smart growth in the states at the beginning of the twenty-first century.

Content Last Updated on: October 18, 2013
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