Summary of Activism

John I. “Hans” Gilderbloom is considered one of the most influential figures in urban affairs with an emphasis on sustainability, housing, health and transportation. His fingerprints are on U.S. cities in plans, policies and progressive actions:

  • Since 1976 he has been credited as a major player in getting passed and defending the enactment of tenant protections against unfair evictions and unreasonable rents in over 125 cities including Los Angeles, San Francisco, and over 100 New Jersey cities.
  • His research on the housing and transportation needs of the disabled and elderly provided a justification for Congress to pass the Americans with Disabilities Act according to Planning Magazine.
  • Dr. Gilderbloom has also demonstrated his ability to partner with non-profits, government, developers and banks to create and renovate attractive, affordable, and sustainable homes in neighborhoods. He has also linked this success to traffic calming by converting fast multi-lane one-way streets into calmer two-way streets for greater walkability, biking and transit use.
  • Dr. Gilderbloom encourages neighborhood regeneration by empowering grassroots citizens to create livable neighborhoods by cleaning up graffiti, litter, and painting homes.
  • Currently a Fellow at Harvard’s Scholar’s Strategy Network.
  • Dr. Gilderbloom was also an effective advocate for ending the U.S. Embargo of Cuba testifying in the US Senate. The State Department also asked him visit Venezuela, Costa Rica, and Russia on a friendship speaking tour.
  • Dr. Gilderbloom’s research has encouraged cities to take a more active role in reducing air, water and ground pollution. This will improve lifespan, prosperity, housing, and health.
  • Dr. Gilderbloom is a professor in the Planning, Public Administration, Public Health, and Urban Affairs program at the University of Louisville, where he also directs the Center for Sustainable Urban Neighborhoods.
  • Since earning his Ph.D., Gilderbloom’s research in urban sustainability has appeared in eight co-authored or edited books or journals, 55 scholarly peer-reviewed journals, 30 chapters in edited books, 11 monographs and 31 opinion pieces in newspapers and magazines including: Wall Street Journal, Washington Post, Los Angeles Times, Chicago Sun-Times, San Francisco Chronicle, Courier-Journal, and USA Today Magazine. The New York Times (as well as other newspapers in the Netherlands, Japan and Russia) ran a Sunday feature of his work on renewing neglected neighborhoods.
  • Ranked as one of the top urban thinkers in the world by Planetizen.
  • He served on the Board of Directors of the Neighborhood Development Corp for twenty years focusing on renovation of historic homes in West Louisville.
  • He has consulted for Presidents (Bush, Clinton and Obama), Mayors (Bernie Sanders, Jerry Abramson), Senators (McConnell, Schumer); Governors (Jerry Brown, Andrew Cuomo) and Secretaries of HUD (Cuomo, Cisneros).
  • He has consulted with the Mayors of Moscow, Russia; Habana, Cuba; San Jose, Costa Rica; Melbourne, Australia; and such US cities as Burlington, Houston, Newport, Louisville, Newark, Berkeley, Santa Barbara, Los Angeles, and Chicago. He has advised the Secretary of US Treasury under Obama, along with Gay Rights icon the late Harvey Milk, Mayor Bernie Sanders of Burlington and the US Senate, Martin Luther King III, Senate Majority Leader Mitch McConnell, and consulted with a top US advisor to President Nelson Mandela on housing.
  • View complete curriculum vitae here.