René Pastorek

Chief Economic Development Officer

René Pastorek is a certified urban planner and sustainability professional with ten years of experience in both the public and private sectors. Most recently, he worked as a consultant specializing in transportation capital investment planning through meaningful public engagement and technical analysis for communities in Texas, Louisiana, and across the Gulf Coast.

Prior to his position in the private sector, René served as Planning and Zoning Director for St. John the Baptist Parish, Louisiana. In this role, he successfully designed and implemented a comprehensive resilience strategy aimed at widescale revitalization of major commercial corridors and historic districts throughout the Parish.

In addition to his planning experience, he has spoken at both national and regional conferences and won numerous awards for both his efforts to build resilience in St. John Parish and transportation planning work. In 2019, he was awarded the Community Champion Award from the U.S. Green Building Council Louisiana Chapter. Later in 2021, he received the Planning Excellence Award for Implementation from the American Planning Association Louisiana Chapter.

Outside of work, René is currently President of the American Planning Association Louisiana Chapter, as well as Louisiana’s delegate to the American Planning Association for National Policy Development.  Pastorek holds a Bachelor of Arts in Geography from Louisiana State University, as well as a Master of Urban and Regional Planning from the University of New Orleans. A lifelong resident of New Orleans, René’s passion for Downtown New Orleans began as a child taking the ferry from Algiers to Canal Street to explore the city.