About Strong Towns

Strong Towns is a
non-profit, non-partisan organization that helps America's towns achieve financial strength and resiliency.

We travel the nation and the digisphere to promote a complete understanding of the costs that are associa­ted with our communities' methods of growth, and we advocate to address those costs via productive changes in our pattern of development.

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Strong Towns Staff

President Charles L. Marohn, Jr. PE AICP    

Charles Marohn - known as "Chuck" to friends and colleagues - is a Professional Engineer (PE) licensed in the State of Minnesota and a member of the American Institute of Certified Planners (AICP). He has a Bachelor's degree in Civil Engineering from the University of Minnesota's Institute of Technology and a Masters in Urban and Regional Planning from the University of Minnesota's Humphrey Institute.

He is the author of Thoughts on Building Strong Towns (Volume 1), the primary author of the Strong Towns Blog and the host of the Strong Towns Podcast and See it Differently TV.

Chuck grew up on a small farm in Central Minnesota. The oldest of three sons of two elementary school teachers, he graduated from Brainerd High School in 1991. Chuck joined the Minnesota National Guard on his 17th birthday during his junior year of high school and served for nine years. Besides being passionate about planning and small towns, he loves playing music, is an obsessive reader and is a season ticket holder of the Minnesota Twins.

Chuck and his wife live with their two daughters and two Samoyeds just north of Baxter, Minnesota.


Executive Director Jim Kumon

Jim Kumon is an urban designer and community organizer based in Minneapolis.  As Executive Director, he organizes events, volunteer initiatives, membership activities and sponsorship programs for the group. He is your primary point of contact for engaging with anything relating to Strong Towns.

Jim was born and raised in a rural township about fifty miles northwest of Detroit. After graduating with a Bachelor’s of Science degree in Architecture from the University of Michigan, Jim started his professional career in architecture and urban design in Los Angeles, and later moved to Denver.  He has served on the board of a multitude of professional and trade groups and brings over a decade of not-for-profit experience to Strong Towns.  Most recently, he served as operations manager of a national niche consulting company in the architecture and engineering industry.

Jim, his wife, and son live in the heart of south Minneapolis, where they are slowly renovating their 103 year old house.  A self proclaimed rain barrel enthusiast and edible garden aficionado, he is working to maximize the return on investment in their small city yard.  He is a past member of the board of directors for Kingfield Neighborhood Association and currently chairs its redevelopment committee. He is also actively involved in the southwest Minneapolis small business community and is a member of the Fair State Brewing Cooperative.