Rachel DiResto, AICP, has more than two decades of expertise in community planning and outreach, and organizational management, where her work has served a critical role in building stronger, more resilient communities across Louisiana and the Gulf Coast. As vice president at Emergent Method, Rachel is responsible for leading client engagements and projects in disciplines such as strategic communications, organizational growth and planning, public outreach and community engagement, and community planning, in addition to lending her background in organizational planning and leadership to support the day-to-day operations of the firm.
Rachel joined Emergent Method in 2018 after serving as executive vice president at the Center for Planning Excellence (CPEX), where she spent the prior 19 years guiding the growth and impact of the Louisiana-based nonprofit since its inception. At CPEX, Rachel oversaw numerous high-profile and highly successful planning initiatives focused on progressive planning practices for the livability and economic vitality of Louisiana communities, including serving in a central role in coordinating the Louisiana Speaks process – a regional long-term recovery plan for southern Louisiana following Hurricanes Katrina and Rita – and spearheading the CONNECT Coalition, a regional transportation coalition advocating for improved connectivity between Baton Rouge and New Orleans, among many others.
She is a graduate of the University of Dallas, where she earned her Bachelor of Arts degree, and the University of New Orleans, where she earned her Master of Science in Urban and Regional Planning. Additionally, Rachel is a member of the American Planning Association and certified by the American Institute of Certified Planners (AICP). She is a former recipient of the Greater Baton Rouge Business Report’s Forty Under 40 award, previously served on the boards of directors for Forum 35 and the Arts Council of Greater Baton Rouge, and currently serves on the boards of directors for the Baton Rouge Gallery and Front Yard Bikes.