Who We Are & What We Do

  • Who We Are and What We Do

    RFA Planning Consultant Inc. is a professional consulting firm based in Belleville, providing land planning services since 1993.

    The firm provides services in south-eastern Ontario municipalities including:

    • City of Belleville
    • City of Quinte West
    • Prince Edward County
    • Hastings County
    • Lennox and Addington County
    • City of Kingston
    • Frontenac County
    • Northumberland County

    The firm is led by Ruth Ferguson Aulthouse, a widely recognized planner with over 30 years experience. The firm has a reputation for extensive knowledge of the planning process in south-eastern Ontario.

    We are familiar with every stage of the development approval process for all types of development. The firm has been involved in a wide scope of residential, commercial, industrial, and institutional projects in urban, suburban and rural locations.

    RFA provides a high level of client service, formulating reliable and effective recommendations for clients. There is a strong work ethic with on-time and on-budget delivery of services.

    The firm understands how to create a working balance between private and public interests in land use planning. This creates a high level of success for our clients. Our goal is to foster progressive development and create attractive, livable communities.

Our Staff

Ruth Ferguson Aulthouse B.E.S., MCIP, RPP


Ruth established RFA Planning Consultant Inc. in 1993 following employment for various municipal and consulting planning organizations. She is originally from Grey County where she worked in the Planning Department before relocating to the Quinte area in 1983. She is well established in south-eastern Ontario as a land use planner with specialized knowledge of this part of the Province. Her planning education was at Waterloo University in the School of Urban and Regional Planning.

J. Spencer Hutchison RPP, MCIP, MRTPI

Senior Associate Planner

Spencer is now into his 30th year of working in the field of municipal land use planning. Until recently this experience had been as a municipal planner with the City of Trenton, then the Municipality of Port Hope and most recently with the City of Belleville. This extensive exposure to public and private sector planning has provided Spencer with a real understanding of the municipal planning process in eastern Ontario.

Shawn Legere BCD Hons., MCIP, RPP

Senior Planner

Shawn holds an Honours Bachelor Degree in Community Design, Major in Urban Design Studies, is a Registered Professional Planner and is a full member of the Canadian Institute of Planners. Shawn joined the RFA Planning team in 2010; however, had previously worked with the firm on various projects since 2008. At RFA, Shawn holds a unique skill set – equal parts urban designer and planner. Shawn is responsible for preparing development plans as well as conducting site analysis and planning research and preparing planning documents and visuals along with all planning applications. He has commanding skills in all industry-leading design and mapping applications (Adobe Illustrator, SketchUp, AutoCAD, and ESRI ArcMap) and delivers high quality work.

Lorna Brown C. Tech.

Senior Design Technician

Lorna is a graduate of the Architectural Technician program at Loyalist College, Belleville, Ontario. Over the last 30 years, Lorna has worked with planning and engineering consulting firms within the City of Belleville and surrounding area.

In 2010, Lorna joined the RFA Planning team, bringing with her a set of unique skills that makes her position as Senior Design Technician valuable to our organization. In her role, Lorna provides technical service and support to our team in the design of major land development projects for both the private and public sectors. Her projects have been throughout Eastern Ontario including Kingston, Belleville, Prince Edward County, Quinte West, Brighton and Cobourg. Lorna has designed and drafted site plans, draft plans of subdivision or condominium, and land development projects that incorporate planning and engineering strategies for new and redeveloped municipal infrastructure projects.

Carolyn F. Ross B.Sc

Senior Planner

Ms. Ross has 15 years of planning experience including 12 years with the City of Belleville where she was Manager of Policy Planning before joining the RFA team. Ms. Ross was also a citizen appointee on the Belleville Planning Advisory Committee. The exposure to public and private sector planning in addition to Committee membership has allowed Carolyn to develop an appreciation and understanding of the planning process from numerous perspectives.

Joy L. McLeod BA

Planning Assistant & Office Manager

Joy has been with the RFA Planning team for two years after following successful careers with the Ontario Public Service and the Corporation of the County of Prince Edward (PEC). Joy brings a wealth of knowledge and expertise in the areas of transportation, community safety, emergency management, planning, organizational effectiveness, customer service and management. She is the proud recipient of two prestigious awards in leadership and innovation during her tenure in the provincial government.

Daniel Bedford B.A., B.U.R.Pl.


Daniel recently joined the RFA Planning team in 2018 and holds a Bachelor of Urban and Regional Planning from Ryerson University and a Bachelor of Arts from the University of Western Ontario in Media, Information & Technoculutre. Bringing with him a set of unique skills, Daniel is responsible for working with the Senior Planners, assisting in the preparation of Planning Reports and preparing planning sketches for zoning, consents, official plan amendments and site plans.