John I. “Hans” Gilderbloom is a Professor in the Graduate Program in Urban and Public Affairs at the University of Louisville, where he also directs the highly lauded Center for Sustainable Urban Neighborhoods ( Dr. Gilderbloom is a core faculty member of the Planning Program, which recently ranked among the top 25 best programs in the country.  Dr. Gilderbloom graduated from UCSB in 1975 with the highest grade point average in the entire University of California system with a 4.3—meaning he got more A+’s than A’s

In an international poll of thousands of urbanists, planners and architects, Prof. Gilderbloom was ranked one of the “top 100 urban thinkers in the world.”   Since earning his Ph.D., Gilderbloom's research on urban issues has appeared in nearly 40 peer-reviewed journals, 27 chapters in edited books, 11 monographs and 31 opinion pieces in newspapers and magazines. He has written or edited five books. His book Rethinking Rental Housing, was called "The most significant piece on housing policy written in the last 40 years" by the Journal of the American Planning Association. A survey of college housing students by the National Housing Institute found Rethinking Rental Housing to be one of the most widely-chosen books in college housing courses.

In 2013,  Gilderbloom won the President's 2013  distinguished Faculty Award.  He also earned the  A&S honor for lifetime achievement for research on neighborhood housing dynamics.  In the Fall of 2013 Dr. Gilderbloom will be recognized at half time football game, and a picture of me on a light post .    According to Dr. Gilderbloom : “Here I am the faculty member competing against the 1,346 faculty members including law, medical, liberal arts, sciences and Dental is humbling because they are doing some amazing work that is also outstanding…. Honestly, I was so happy I cried--joy because it affirms the highest honor for my research among colleagues and sadness because my son and Patty won't be there for the two day celebration starting September 9 at the Papa John's Cardinal Stadium followed by the State of the University address on Wednesday September 11 where I will be on stage. I just want to say thank my friends and family for your support. Special thanks for the past and present President's of the American Sociological Association, American Planning Association, International Sociological Association, former Harvard President Derek Bok, former HUD Secretary Henry Cisneros and former President Bill Clinton who have supported my research in the past with letters of support. Yes, I am the man of great tragedy and triumph. Today it is triumph with better days ahead. My research is my mistress; my passion is that truth is our best compass for our civilization. “ 

In 2005 SUNY Press released Promise and Betrayal:  University and the Battle for Sustainable Urban Neighborhoods, which includes an introduction by former HUD Secretary Henry Cisneros and appendix letters of support from President Bill Clinton and Harvard President Derek Bok. The 2008 book, Invisible City: Poverty, Housing and New Urbanism, earned praise from Andres Duany, William Domhoff, Donovan Rypkema, and Neal Pierce. Gilderbloom’s opinion pieces appeared in the Wall Street Journal, Washington Post, Los Angeles Times and USA Today Magazine. The New York Times ran a Sunday feature of his work in poor communities and a smaller version of his “painted lady,” a home that he has restored.  He is part of Politico’s Arena  roundtable involving Senator’s,  Congressman, policy analysts, and academics.

In the Clinton administration he worked as a consultant on several items, including Clinton’s first State of the Union Speech. Gilderbloom advised speechwriters to emphasize Clinton programs that would lead to more homeownership opportunities and to deemphasize Gore’s hard-to-grasp “information highway language.” His work with the Clinton administration included Section 108 programs, Hope VI, and Community Outreach Partnership Programs. Gilderbloom earned recognition and honors from U.S. Senate, House of Representatives, President Clinton, American Planning Association, the Mayor of Houston, Sierra Club, the National Republican Party, a Harvard Innovations in Government program, National Forest Service, and the American Institute for Architects. Gilderbloom is writing a new book: Urban Revolution:  Sustianable Neighborhoods and Smart Economics.

He has been featured in the New York Times, Atlanta Journal Constitution, Planning and various other international newspapers, including those in Japan, Netherlands, and Cuba. In 2005 Planetizen called Encyclopedia of 20th-Century Architecture one of the 10 best planning and architecture books. Gilderbloom’s contribution was a chapter on modern Cuban architectureDr. Gilderbloom was a key consultant in a $35 million investment by Telesis on a 550-unit City View apartment project in West Louisville. He worked with Louisville Central Development Corporation and area Churches to help design and build fifty single family “new urbanist” houses in the East Russell neighborhood—ten years later this neighborhood has the lowest foreclosure rate of any neighborhood in Louisville. More recently Dr. Gilderbloom completed a seven-year consultancy in Newport, Ky., resulting in 27 million dollars new and renovated housing and regeneration of a poor neighborhood. He now consults with officials in Covington, another northern Kentucky city, where they are building a $31 million dollar mixed use development. He now advises another developer on a larger $100 million dollar development in Indiana. Altogether Dr. Gilderbloom has been a consultant to companies building  over 15,000 housing units costing over a billion dollars. All this work has led to Gilderbloom getting Business Man of the Year, Gold Medal Award Republican National Committee in 2004.  

Dr. Gilderbloom owns a modest portfolio of historic Victorian homes that have been restored using green and historic preservation  principles (  Dr. Gilderbloom notes with pride that his first paid publication ($10.00!) was an article about Santana for Rolling Stone Magazine as a teenager.  Originally a music major in College, he once backed up Allen Ginsberg poetry reading on his flute in front of a packed audience of 900 persons. He is also been a guest on CNN and recently had a small part in the movie, The Song, which also featured his home—the painted lady.  He is currently writing a book,  Urban Revolution: Sustainable Neighborhoods and Smart Economics,  with a top academic press.