Christopher Carlos Brzovic and Julian Turley: Moelis Fellows

Christopher Carlos Brzovic and Julian Turley: Moelis Fellows

Legend: Julian TurleyChristopher Carlos Brzovic and Julian Turley were selected for the Moelis Scholars program in the Department of Urban and Regional Planning at the Weitzman School.

Established in 2019 under the direction of Ron Moelis, C’78 W’78, the program prepares students committed to diversity to be the next generation of leaders in the field of urban planning. Students who intend to pursue a career in public / private development or housing, community and economic development are especially encouraged to apply. Fellows receive a full tuition fee for the two years of the program, as well as a one-year research assistant, one year of American Planning Association membership after graduation, and mentorship from a member of the faculty and alumni of Moelis Scholar.

Christopher Carlos Brzovic is pursuing a master’s degree in urban planning with a concentration in housing, community and economic development. Mr. Brzovic grew up in San Diego County, California, and first attended Grossmont College. He then graduated summa cum laude from the University of California at San Diego, with a double major in philosophy and political theory. Mr. Brzovic has worked in housing and homelessness services in Burlington, Vermont, for the past six years, creating an entry system that provides coordinated access to housing and services for all homeless households in the Chittenden County, Vermont. First a member of AmeriCorps, he successfully coordinated a homeless registration event, mobilizing volunteers to survey over 200 homeless people and generating the community’s first nominal list of homeless people. Using this data, Brzovic led the Greater Burlington community to adopt Housing First policies and prioritize supportive housing resources based on need and vulnerability. Working with the State Veterans Committee, Brzovic and his team succeeded in ending veteran homelessness in Chittenden County, an achievement that was recognized by the United States Interagency Council on the homeless.

Following the COVID-19 pandemic, which revealed the extent of housing precariousness in the United States, Brzovic decided to focus his efforts on preventing homelessness by addressing structural determinants and intersection of housing precariousness and inequalities. “While my dream job may be utopian, it would involve centering social, economic, racial and environmental justice in all policy and decision-making,” Brzovic said. “I would ideally work to realign federal, state and local systems and resources to enable local communities to achieve restorative housing justice and democratically shape their own environments and futures.

Julian Turley is pursuing a master’s degree in urban planning with a concentration in public and private development. Mr. Turley is originally from Grand Rapids, Michigan, and holds a degree in political science from the University of Michigan. As a student, he served as president of research and education for the Black Student Union and co-founded Namesy, a food discovery web and mobile app for people with a diet lifestyle. After graduating, Mr. Turley moved to Oakland, California, and worked at Code2040, a non-profit organization that helps black and Latin technologists enter the tech industry through internships. As he struggled to bridge the racial divide with technology, Turley observed that much of the wealth created by technology contributes to the displacement of Indigenous residents. He returned to his hometown to become an Entrepreneur in Residence at Grand Valley State University to help students launch their projects through the 77IdeaLab Accelerator, and became an Equities and Human Resources Researcher at Pink Cornrows, a company public policy, communication and investment. led by women of color.

Mr. Turley’s mission is to build equitable communities through entrepreneurship. “Within entrepreneurship, the designer’s methodology requires involving users on a daily basis, understanding their needs, their weak points, and then wanting to work with them to have a solution,” said Mr. Turley. “As a black man raised in a single parent family, my experiences in town planning did not embody these fair design elements.”

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