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Urbanova Welcomes Mason Burley as Chief Executive Officer

Urbanova’s second CEO brings diverse talents to scale its place-based, research-informed services

Spokane, WA (December 7, 2021) – Urbanova ( announced today that Mason Burley has been appointed CEO of the organization. Burley brings vast experience in building community-directed, data-informed solutions with an equity lens. He will succeed current CEO and co-founder Kim Zentz on December 16, 2021. Zentz transitions to principal consultant to continue Urbanova work in progress.

Burley most recently served as director of research at Innovia Foundation, where he led efforts to evaluate the impact of foundation investments in large-scale community initiatives. He also currently serves as an adjunct professor in Eastern Washington University’s College of Professional Programs and is the 2021 chairperson for Priority Spokane. Burley spent over 20 years as a senior research associate at the Washington State Institute for Public Policy, a non-partisan legislative research organization.

“Mason brings considerable talents and impressive experience to Urbanova,” said David Condon, Urbanova board chair. “His background and relationships in the public, corporate, university and philanthropic sectors will accelerate current and future growth initiatives at Urbanova.”

“Mason brings all these experiences and is propelled by a genuine passion for improving lives and outcomes for people in communities,” added Kim Zentz. “He is fully prepared to continue existing collaborations and build new partnerships to extend Urbanova’s unique model of services to midsize cities across the country.”

The opportunity to connect forward-thinking leaders with locally relevant data and emerging technologies for the purpose of improving equity, access, safety, and quality of life in Spokane and other midsize cities drew Burley to the role. “The promise of Urbanova starts with people, not new technologies,” said Burley. “The strength of Spokane involves people working alongside each other to accomplish goals no one thought possible. Urbanova provides a space to build partnerships, learn together and utilize data and technology in a way that makes life better for all residents.”

Burley received a doctorate from the Washington State University Individual Interdisciplinary Doctoral Program in 2017, with a focus on Health Services Research. He also holds a certificate in Advanced Evaluation Practices from Claremont Graduate University (Evaluators Institute).

Headquartered in Spokane, WA and incorporated in 2016, Urbanova is an urban innovation partnership focused on driving equitable solutions for midsize cities. With partners that include Avista, the City of Spokane, Itron, McKinstry, The University District Development Association, Washington State University, Verizon and Gallup, Urbanova builds multi-sector collaborations, develops technology, and harnesses strategies to create more resilient communities.

Contact: Alison Mallahan, senior manager, corporate communications, Itron (509) 891-3802