Maurice Cox, newly appointed Planning Director for the City of Detroit is an urban designer, architectural educator and former mayor of the City of Charlottesville, VA. He most recently served as Associate Dean for Community Engagement at Tulane University, School of Architecture and Director of the Tulane City Center, a university-affiliated practice operating at the intersection of design, urban research and civic engagement throughout the New Orleans community. Cox has taught at Syracuse University, the University of Virginia and Harvard University's Graduate School of Design. His experience merging architecture, politics and design education led to his being named one of “20 Masters of Design” in 2004 by Fast Company Business Magazine. He served as Design Director of the National Endowment for the Arts from 2007-2010 where he led the NEA’s Your Town Rural Institute, the Governor’s Institute on Community Design, the Mayors’ Institute on City Design, and oversaw direct design grants to the design community across the U.S. In 2013, Cox was named one of the Most Admired Design Educators in America in the annual ranking of Design Intelligence.