Chris Harrell is one of the Team Leaders on the US EPA Brownfields Community Benefits Assessment Project with the University of Louisville’s Center for Environmental Policy and Management (CEPM). Harrell is also the Founder and Principal of Lazarus Group LLC, a firm engaged in crafting redevelopment strategies for distressed properties, corridors, and communities. In 2013 Harrell joined three other concerned citizens to found the Civic Data Alliance, an advocacy and action group of volunteers devoted to freeing public data, and using open data for the public good.
From April 2004 until August, 2011 Harrell managed distressed property redevelopment efforts as Brownfield Redevelopment Coordinator for the City of Indianapolis’ Department of Metropolitan Development. Harrell’s educational background includes graduate degrees in both law and public policy. Harrell received his JD and MPA from Indiana University – Bloomington, and his AB from Wabash College. Along with his background in the public sector with the City of Indianapolis, Harrell has also worked for the Slovene Ministry of Finance in Ljubljana, and the Planning Department for the City of Bloomington, Indiana. Harrell’s previous private sector experience included managing projects at two environmental consulting firms in Louisville, KY.
Recent areas of special focus include: historic preservation of distressed properties through market rate redevelopment; linking comprehensive community development efforts and sustainability in urban core communities; creating mobile device based applications for collecting, analyzing and mapping hyper-local data in community-wide efforts; using data to clarify priorities for community economic development initiatives; and driving towards “Safer Soils” protocols for urban infill lots and brownfields for reuse in urban farming efforts.