Our Staff

Putting Community First.

We are a local small business that truly values the needs of all communities, especially of those that are frequently undervalued and underrepresented. 

Pronouns: She/Her/They

CEO & Founder

Community & Environmental Planner

V Fixmer-Oraiz

Bachelors Degree, Environmental Studies

University of North Carolina at Chapel Hill

2011

Masters Degree, Urban & Regional Planning

University of Iowa

2015

V has been working in the environmental sector for over a decade. She came to Iowa after completing a Fulbright in the Philippines. Returning to the Philippines, she was able to reconnect with family members and friends while researching climate change impacts on rural bamboo farmers. Transferring her work to the Midwest, she completed her Masters Degree in Urban and Regional Planning with an emphasis in Environmental & Land Use Planning.

 

V founded Astig Planning to fuse community organizing techniques with planning frameworks. As a company aligned with a vision toward equity and sustainability, her work has focused on regional planning and community engagement. She has worked with municipalities and counties on comprehensive and master plans, and has contributed to the completion of several regional watershed plans, including the English River and Middle Cedar River watershed plans. She is passionate about engaging with people on a range of issues impacting their community, such as stormwater and floods, economic development, racial equity and social justice, and expanding community services. She is a certified yoga teacher and offers classes focused on building community and connecting people.

Certified Floodplain Manager, Association of State Floodplain Managers

Certified Planner, American Planning Association

Committee Member APA Iowa Chapter's Diversity, Equity & Inclusion Committee

Board Member, Johnson County Affordable Housing Coalition

Board Member, Iowa City Area Business Partnership

300-Hour RYT Certified Yoga Instructor

Languages: English & Spanish.

Bachelors Degree, Growth & Structure of Cities

Bryn Mawr College

2012

PhD Candidate, Geographical &

Sustainability Sciences 

University of Iowa

Anticipated 2021

Cristina Muñoz De La Torre

Pronouns: She/Her/Hers

Community Resilience Planner

Cristina brings a science-based understanding of community resilience to environmental and climate hazards to the team. She is currently a Ph.D. candidate in the department of Geographical & Sustainability Sciences at the University of Iowa. In her research, Cristina analyzes years of federal disaster aid allocations to determine whether socially vulnerable populations affected by flood and hurricane disasters are equitably served.
 
Valuing both research and practice, Cristina has been involved in local and national efforts to address environmental and climate justice. She advocated with communities in Camden, New Jersey for cleaner energy, conferenced at Power Shift in Washington, DC, and worked with Latina women in rural towns in Nicaragua to reduce environmental pollution. Cristina is a member of the Union of Concerned Scientists and is part of the scientist-community advocacy training program which aims to train traditional experts how to advocate with communities for environmental and climate justice.
 
After work you can find Cristina either volunteering at a local food pantry, congregating at church, or catching-up with her family in Los Angeles.

Pronouns: He/Him/His

Community Organizing Planner

Bachelors Degree, History

California State University Los Angeles

2014

Masters Degree, History

University of Iowa, Iowa City

2016

David

De La Torre

Languages: English & Spanish.

David joined Astig Planning, LLC as a Community Organizing Planner in 2019. He believes that communities are resilient and that an effective planning process is one where their voices are centered and efforts enhanced. That is the perspective he is bringing as a co-lead in the Coralville Flood Resilience Action Plan (FRAP) and other planning projects. 

 

David has a background in social justice and expertise in organizing. He was the field organizer for the Julián Castro presidential campaign in Iowa City. David has also supported a number of local political, housing, food access, and labor campaigns and worked with organizations in these areas as a community volunteer. As an intern, he assisted workers obtain justice in wage theft cases at the Center for Worker Justice of Eastern Iowa.   

 

In addition to his formal training in History, David has cultivated an ethos of community engagement from working with people in both urban and rural settings. In 2018, he integrated these values into designing and teaching a course at the University of Iowa where he advised undergraduate students in history research while engaging communities. He has taught art and physical education at an elementary school in a small rural town in Nicaragua and held socratic seminars and after school programs at a high school in Philadelphia. 

 

David values community expertise, networks, collaborations, and storytelling at the heart of planning. In 2014, he co-founded a community based capacity building organization Bridging South Central Communities in Los Angeles with those values in mind. He now calls Iowa home and loves photography and the occasional canela flavored coffee while working on a collection of short stories and essays. 

Pronouns: 

Assistant Planner

Bachelors Degree, Civil Engineering

Centro Universitário UNA

2014

Master's Degree Candidate, 

School of Urban and Regional Planning

University of Iowa

Flavia Hauss

Languages: English, Portuguese, and Spanish.

Flavia Hauss is a Civil Engineer from Brazil with nine years of experience in project management in the construction sector. She is currently a second-year master’s degree candidate in the School of Urban and Regional Planning at the University of Iowa. Her areas of focus are Transportation, Land Use, and Environmental Planning.

As an engineer, she has developed teamwork and communication skills, through active listening, transparent decision-making, and brainstorming sessions. She prioritizes client engagement throughout the planning process in order to achieve their initial expectations and deliver a satisfying set of deliverables. While working for an engineering firm in Brazil, she completed a master’s degree in Environment and Work Safety, which provided her capabilities to address immediate safety issues in the workplace.

She aims to use her experience to help build a community and transportation planning system that is safe, efficient, and sustainable. She believes in the implementation of local environmental plans that meaningfully engage community members and decision-makers, in order to mitigate environmental impacts and meet local regulations. She seeks to help create a society where everyone, regardless of their race, abilities, economic status, or the area they live, can have a healthy and safe environment in which to thrive, while preserving our natural environment.

Pronouns: She/Her/Hers

Community Planning Intern

Bachelors Degree, Public Health & Communication Studies 

University of Iowa

Anticipated May 2021

Jessica Allen

Jessica Allen is a senior at the University of Iowa actively pursuing her Bachelor of Arts in Public Health with a minor in Communication Studies. She will be graduating in the spring of 2021 and plans on completing a gap year prior to earning her Master’s in Urban Planning. She is thrilled to see where this next chapter in her life will bring her. Her goal is to focus on topics related to environmental sustainability and health equity in communities. Jessica also currently works as a COVID-19 Contact Tracer for the Johnson County Public Health Department in Iowa City. 

Coming to Astig with various professional experiences and an education in public health, Jessica has developed teamwork skills and knowledge geared towards helping to solve issues related to health equity, health communication, preventing disease in communities, and social and environmental justice. Outside of work and school, Jessica enjoys getting outdoors by participating in activities such as yoga, kayaking, hiking, and camping.