Kelly Overstreet is a doctoral student at the University of Kansas (KU) School of Public Affairs and Administration (SPAA). Born and raised in Lawrence, Kansas, Kelly earned a joint Master of Urban Planning and Master of Arts in Geography from KU in 2016. Her professional experience includes three years of service at the Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) Region 7 Office where she worked on special projects, managed state environmental and local brownfields grants, and partnered with local communities on smart growth and planning workshops. Kelly received her bachelor degree with honors in history and environmental studies at KU in 2012.
Kelly’s research interests center on the intersections of municipal climate and hazard mitigation planning, social justice, and public engagement. Kelly explores the value of plans and the planning process, local responses to the ongoing climate crisis, and models for compassionate public engagement. Kelly hopes to connect her research to practice by collaborating with planning professionals and practitioners to incorporate compassionate thinking into their work culture and public engagement.