The LAF Board of Directors is a diverse group who bring experience and insights from landscape architecture practice, academia, industry, allied professions, and the nonprofit sector.
Global Market Director
Monte Wilson is Global Market Director for the Built Environment and Global Vice President of Jacobs where he works to create an integrated and expanded Built Environment strategy for architecture, interiors, building systems, and cities and places.
In addition to his leadership role in defining the strategic direction for the practice, Monte serves as a Project Principal and Senior Designer on a range of project types including new towns, mixed-use development, transit-oriented development, revitalization studies, as well as university, research, and corporate campus master plans.
Much of his career has focused on issues associated with community building, urban redevelopment, and sustainability. Since 2008, Monte has worked to integrate Biomimicry into the practice of community planning and city building. Along with a number of current and former colleagues, he is engaged in educating clients and informing design through a bio-inspired planning framework and a systems approach based on life’s principles.
Monte is passionate about city-scale sustainability and is focused on applying systems thinking to a range of urban and regional projects. He has worked on projects throughout the world, including China, Saudi Arabia, Oman, Australia, Columbia, Panama, Israel, North Africa, Canada, and Mexico. Monte is a graduate of the Landscape Architecture program at Texas A&M. He is an active member of the Urban Land Institute (ULI) and a charter member of the Congress for New Urbanism (CNU). He speaks globally on planning and design issues affecting our cities and communities.
University Faculty Scholar and Professor
North Carolina State University
Kofi Boone is a University Faculty Scholar and Associate Professor of Landscape Architecture at NC State University in the College of Design. His work is in landscape architecture and environmental justice with a focus on democratic design and cultural landscapes. Kofi has worked professionally and academically for over 20 years. Kofi is on the LAF board because he wants to play an active role in implementing The New Landscape Declaration with an emphasis on advancing social equity through landscape architecture.
Kofi is engaged in many multidisciplinary efforts including Homeplace: Conversation Guides for Six Communities Rebuilding from Hurricane Matthew, 2018 ASLA Professional Honor Award Winner in Communications.
Immediate Past President
James Corner Field Operations
New York, NY
Lisa Switkin is a Senior Principal at James Corner Field Operations where she leads many of the practice’s complex and transformative projects. With a background in urban planning and landscape architecture, Lisa is committed to improving cities through the innovative, holistic and resilient design of the public realm, informed by the ecologies of place, people and nature. Lisa’s 20 years of professional experience includes the design and delivery of the High Line in New York, Tongva Park in Santa Monica, Domino Park in Brooklyn, and the Race Street Pier in Philadelphia, as well as the master plans for Staten Island’s Freshkills Park, Seattle’s Central Waterfront and The Underline in Miami.
Lisa is on the LAF Board because she believes in the urgency of smart, deep, and responsible design that engages citizens, reconnects people to nature in the city, builds value, and supports ecological, social, and economic resilience. Lisa was a Fellow at the American Academy in Rome in 2007-2008 and has taught graduate-level design studios and lectured at universities, symposiums, foundations, and institutions around the world.
Vice President of Education/Scholarship
Program Director and Professor
University of Texas at Arlington
New Orleans, LA
Diane Jones Allen is currently the Program Director for Landscape Architecture at the University of Texas at Arlington's College of Architecture Planning and Public Affairs, where she also teaches. She is Principal Landscape Architect with DesignJones LLC in New Orleans, Louisiana which received the 2016 American Society of Landscape Architects (ASLA) Community Service Award. In Baltimore, Maryland from 2006-2014 Diane was a member of the Urban Design Architecture Review Panel, where she provided design guidance on major development projects in the City, and a tenured professor in Landscape Architecture at Morgan State University's School of Architecture and Planning. In 2017, she participated as a member of the ASLA Blue Ribbon Panel on Climate Change and Resiliency.
Diane received the 2017 Distinguished Alumni Award from the College of Environmental Design, University of California at Berkeley. Her research and practice are guided by the intersection of environmental justice, identity, and sustainability in cultural landscapes, including “Nomadic” responses to “Transit Deserts,” places of increasing transportation demand and limited access, as discussed in her book “Transit Deserts; Race, Transit Access, and Suburban Form”. Diane recently co-edited Design for Democracy: Techniques for Collective Creativity, published by Island Press, which provides tools for trans-active engagement and design.
Vice President of Communication
Co-Founder and Design Principal
Fort Lauderdale, FL
Rebecca Bradley is one of the founding Principals of Cadence, a Landscape Architecture firm based in Fort Lauderdale, FL. Rebecca leads strategic development for the firm, directs day to day operations, and performs as project design lead for a variety of project types. Rebecca has practiced Landscape Architecture since 2001 after graduating from LSU Robert Reich School of Landscape Architecture. Rebecca is passionate about mentoring youth to join our profession and in daily practice works toward the triple bottom line success of the projects Cadence encounters.
Rebecca is on the LAF board because she wishes to further influence how our profession communicates our unique skill set to solve environmental and social issues in tandem. Locally, Rebecca serves as the Technical Advisory Director for Mockingbird Trail, a Cadence led urban cultural trail initiative that is advocating to transform the way citizens of Fort Lauderdale traverse downtown.
Vice President of Finance
Po is the Vice President of BrightView Landscapes. His corporate leadership skills and 20+ years’ business and strategic planning experience in the design and construction industry have proven instrumental in the rapid and profitable growth of the country’s top landscape design/build practice. Po holds dual Liberal Arts degrees from the University of California at Berkeley and an MBA focused in Organizational Management from the University of Pennsylvania’s Wharton School of Business. He is a member of Critical Mass and a director on several boards including the Orange County Great Park Neighborhoods, the Landscape Architecture Foundation, and Veloce Motors.
Vice President of Research
Co-Director of Urban Design
Ann Arbor, MI
Michael Johnson is the Co-Director of Urban Design at SmithGroup. Michael’s ability to understand and distill complex urban challenges spans catalytic landscape architecture and urban design projects in major American cities, innovative campus plans for top urban research universities and Fortune 500 companies, and international large-scale mixed-use development efforts.
Michael is proud to continue legacy involvement of SmithGroup (and JJR) in LAF as a member of the research committee where he is advancing the measurable role that placemaking and urban design can play in fostering healthy cities and supporting landscape and streetscape performance. He holds a Bachelor’s degree in Landscape Architecture from Ball State University, and a Master’s in Urban Design from the University of Michigan.
Vice President of Development
Director of Marketing
Daniel Martin is Director of Marketing at Permaloc Corporation, the world’s premium manufacturer of edging and restraint solutions for landscape and green build applications. During his time at Permaloc, Daniel has increased the company’s brand recognition, as well as gained a passion for serving the landscape architecture community, with an emphasis on students and emerging professionals. Daniel is also a Partner in Land8 Media, one of the profession’s leading destinations for information and collaboration.
Daniel enjoys his work on the LAF board, helping the organization with its support of students and emerging professionals through scholarship and fellowship opportunities, as well as raising awareness of the importance of landscape architecture in today’s world.
Vice President of Leadership
Florida International University
Roberto Rovira is principal of Studio Roberto Rovira, Professor, and Chair of Landscape Architecture + Environmental and Urban Design at FIU. His research interests include ecological system visualization, landscape ecology as an element of contemporary urban environments, and art in landscape architecture. Roberto has been recognized nationally and internationally for his work as an educator and professional.
He is on the LAF board because it helps shape the future of landscape architecture and because of its commitment to research and scholarship in higher education and beyond. Roberto has completed over 30 exhibits and presentations of research, creative and professional work, and has exhibited his work in over 20 cities and 15 universities worldwide. Fast Company magazine selected his EcoAtlas ecosystem visualization project as a 2018 and 2020 World Changing Ideas finalist, and he earned the Emerging Voice award from the Architectural League, one of the most coveted awards in North American Architecture, which spotlights individuals and firms based in the U. S., Canada, and Mexico with distinct design voices and the potential to influence the disciplines of architecture, landscape architecture, and urbanism.
Sr. Principal & Managing Director
MASS Design Group
Sierra began work with MASS in 2008 focusing on landscape architecture and joined full time in 2009 to finalize the design and oversee implementation of the Butaro Hospital, MASS’s first project. Currently, Sierra directs the ongoing design and implementation of MASS’s planning and architectural projects. Prior to joining MASS, Sierra worked for four years at James Corner Field Operations, primarily in design and oversight of the implementation of Section 1 of the New York City High Line. Sierra has taught graduate-level studios at various universities and from 2010-2012, Sierra served as Head of the Architecture Department at the Kigali Institute of Science and Technology (KIST) in Rwanda.
Sierra received her Bachelor of Arts in Art and Architectural History from Smith College and her Masters of Landscape Architecture and Masters of Architecture from the University of Pennsylvania.
Natalia Beard is a Principal at the SWA Houston Studio. She has led design on large visionary planning projects and highly detailed installations in the US and internationally. Much of Natalia’s work focuses on the issues of urban resiliency and infrastructure. Focusing on the Gulf Coast region and Houston in particular, she leads teams that interface with multiple agencies to help plan and shape a built environment for the rapidly transforming region. Her projects become a dynamic confluence of industry, transportation networks, community, and ecological systems. Natalia is also passionate about elevating the cultural significance of places through the interpretive power of art. Be it an urban, industrial, or post-industrial context, she prioritizes maximizing the effects of design by grounding it in research of the cultural and historical heritage of sites and communities that inhabit them. Working in metropolitan regions in the US over the years, she has developed multiple approaches to incorporating art and cultural expression in large infrastructural environments.
President and Founder
For over three decades, Keith Bowers has been at the forefront of applied ecology. As the founder and president of Biohabitats, Keith has built a multidisciplinary organization focused on conservation planning, ecological restoration, and regenerative design. Biohabitats’ work spans the scale from site-specific ecosystem restoration projects involving coastal wetlands, urban rivers, temperate forests, and arid landscapes to regional watershed management and species conservation planning, to the development of green infrastructure and urban ecology planning for metropolitan areas throughout the country. Keith is a founding board member of the University of Pennsylvania’s Ian L. McHarg Center for Urbanism and Ecology. He also served on the board of the Society for Ecological Restoration for more than 10 years and on the board of the Wildlands Network for 6 years. He is a Fellow of the American Society of Landscape Architects and a Professional Wetland Scientist. He holds a B.S. in Landscape Architecture from West Virginia University and an honorary degree from the Conway School of Design.
Urban Design Director, East Region
City of Detroit Planning Department
Alexa Bush is passionate about creating equitable and resilient cities. She manages a team of planners and designers responsible for planning and implementing neighborhood development and landscape infrastructure projects on Detroit's east side. She has also been a project lead for Detroit's Reimagining the Civic Commons initiatives, working with a multi-sector team to improve civic engagement, equity, and environmental sustainability through reinvestment into neighborhood scale public spaces co-created with residents. Prior to her Detroit work, she gained diverse experience in communities across the US on urban design, historic landscape preservation and large-scale planning projects. Alexa received her bachelor's degree in Visual and Environmental Studies from Harvard University and her master's in Landscape Architecture from the University of Virginia.
Richard D. Centolella, PLA, FASLA, is a Principal at EDSA and manages EDSA’s Baltimore Studio. He specializes in resort design, community planning, and large-scale master planning. He holds a Bachelor of Landscape Architecture from the State University of New York College of Environmental Science and Forestry. He joined EDSA in 1985.
Los Angeles, CA
Connie is a Principal and practice leader in open space economics at HR&A Advisors, an economic development and real estate consultancy with four decades of experience contributing to the planning and development of urban open spaces. With a background in planning, economic development, and downtown revitalization, Connie is inspired by the ability of public space to strengthen communities and create equitable and inclusive access to nature and recreation.
Connie holds a Master's in City Planning from MIT and a B.S. in Economics from the Wharton School - University of Pennsylvania. Connie serves as the Managing Principal of the Los Angeles office of HR&A.
Keiko is a Principal at WRT with nearly two decades of experience working on both urban design and landscape architecture projects. With degrees in landscape architecture, architecture, and engineering, Keiko uses her interdisciplinary training to provide an integral design process and unique perspective to transforming urban landscape through the lens of local, cultural, and natural significance. Her projects have included the 2017 Ruby Bruner Award Gold Medalist for Urban Excellence SteelStacks Arts & Cultural Campus in Bethlehem, PA, the ASLA award-winning Georgetown Waterfront Park, FDR Park Vision Master Plan in Philadelphia, PA, Crystal City: A Placemaking Framework in Crystal City, VA, Trinity River Vision Master Plan and Design Guideline in Dallas, TX, and Principal Riverwalk in Des Moines, IA. In addition, Keiko maintains her architectural license in Japan, which has led to a number of international projects for WRT including the Daiichi Mutual Life Insurance Office Landscape in Kanagawa, Japan, Harvest Walk Vision Master Plan, and SCBD Lot 10 Development in Jakarta, Indonesia.
Hood Design Studio
Alma Du Solier is a Landscape Architect and Studio Director at Hood Design Studio, a cultural practice in Oakland, CA which merges landscape architecture, public art, and urban design. She is also a registered architect in her native country of Mexico. Alma’s design approach builds on her dual design background and her interest in the meaningful integration of design with site and culture. Alma is a recurrent guest lecturer at UC Berkeley’s Department of Landscape Architecture and Environmental Planning.
Alma joined the LAF Board because of her admiration for LAF’s mission which, recognizes the transformative effect and power of influence landscape has in our cities and beyond. This is all so much more relevant today, and she strongly believes the only way to steer our future towards the right direction is to be proactive as general citizens, but more specifically as landscape architects.
Kansas City, MO
Tim Duggan is Founding Partner of Phronesis with offices in Kansas City and New Orleans. Phronesis is a landscape architecture and urban design studio focused almost entirely on creating regenerative infrastructure and community systems within the public realm. His Landscape Architecture career began in the Midwest where he collaborated on a wide range of projects from post-disaster community planning initiatives to complex green infrastructure urban design strategies.
Most recently, Tim developed over 200 LEED Platinum Landscapes with his role as Director of Innovations for the Make it Right Foundation. He managed their transformative community projects based in New Orleans, Kansas City, Newark, and the Fort Peck Indian Reservation while working extensively with local community organizations and individuals. Tim was named a Metropolis magazine 2012 Game Changer for his ambitious experiments in landscape design. Duggan has served as a speaker and guest critic on sustainable site solutions for many organizations including ASLA, AIA, and GreenBuild, and has served as an adjunct professor and guest critic for Tulane University, Kansas State University, and the University of Missouri-Kansas City.
Dorothy Faris, Principal at multi-disciplinary design firm, Mithun, is one of the design leaders of the landscape architecture practice. Her ability to think across scales — from master planning large sites to specifics of construction details — and collaborative approach makes her a valuable team member. With a background in ceramics and art history, Dorothy was attracted to landscape architecture as an art form that enhances our built environments. With over 14 years’ experience, her conceptually driven design approach and interest in ecological process have led to the creation of many successful and unique civic spaces.
Dorothy was inspired by the 2016 Summit and LAF’s focus on diversifying the landscape architecture profession to join the LAF board. She holds a Master of Landscape Architecture from the University of Washington and is a member of ASLA and a graduate of the ULI Center for Sustainable Leadership.
Michael is the Chair of Landscape Architecture, Civil Engineering, and Ecology and sits on the Board of Directors at Sasaki, a global design firm with offices in Boston and Shanghai. Leading much of the firm’s work in Asia, he offers unique insight into the unprecedented transformation and urbanization of the region. Michael is a fierce advocate for the vital role that landscape architects play in shaping contemporary cities. Informed by a rigorous inquiry of economic, ecological, and cultural influences, he believes that the role of the designer is to make cities more livable, equitable, resilient, and just.
His work has been recognized with numerous awards from the American Planning Association, the Urban Land Institute, Fast Company, and other professional organizations. Michael is on the board of the Landscape Architecture Foundation because he is interested in spreading the mission of LAF to a global audience.
Director of Planning
San Francisco, CA
Brian Jencek is the Global Director of HOK’s Planning practice, leading 75 city planners, urban designers, landscape architects and environmental scientists in studios located around the world. His experience spans numerous award-winning projects nationally and abroad, including the 2012 London Olympics, Stanford University’s School of Medicine campus, 2020 Dubai World Expo, and planning for new cities in Panama, Brazil, China, and India. Brian’s work with communities around the world, on issues of environmental justice, equity, and climate change, draws inspiration from the LAF New Landscape Declaration (NLD) call-to-action. Leveraging HOK’s global reach, Brian actively incorporates the NLD externally to inform project missions and success indicators as well as internally to mentor and onboard the next generation of landscape architects.
Educated in Landscape Architecture and Planning at Cornell University, Brian is active professionally and academically with the ASLA, ULI, SPUR, and the Clinton Climate Initiative, is a Landscape Architecture Foundation Board Member, and teaches graduate-level design studios on topics of climate change resiliency and environmental planning at the UC Berkeley College of Environmental Design.
San Antonio, TX
Elaine Kearney leads TBG San Antonio as Managing Principal where she works to create compelling landscapes rooted in the ecology and unique environment of the Edwards Plateau region. Before returning to her native Texas, Elaine practiced in Cambridge, MA and Portland, OR for over a decade. Her background also includes academic engagements across a number of universities and firms. She has taught at Trinity University, Boston Architecture Center, Portland State University, and served as a guest critic at UT San Antonio.
She earned her Master of Landscape Architecture from the Harvard Graduate School of Design. Before that, she attended Trinity University where she earned her Bachelor of Arts in Economics and graduated Magna Cum Laude.
Elaine believes that the issues of our time require the nuanced voices of landscape architects and was attracted to serving on LAF’s board, in part, by our emphasis on future practitioners. She’s excited to play a role in expanding diversity and access to landscape architecture education through LAF’s scholarship programs.
As a landscape architect, educator and ecologist, Emily approaches every project as an opportunity to celebrate the intersection of natural and cultural narratives of place through design. Her professional practice and research spans internationally, leading conversations within the design and planning communities on maximizing landscapes to perform social and environmental services. She has worked on a wide range of award-winning projects across the world that are models for integrating environmental, social and economic sustainability in artful and inspiring ways.Emily is a published author and Associate Professor at NC State University, where she holds a Master of Landscape Architecture degree and a GIS certificate. She has a Bachelor of Science degree in Ecology, Evolution and Environmental Biology, and studied Restoration Ecology at the University of Idaho. Emily remains passionate about her service to organizations such as the Landscape Architecture Foundation, where she has served on the Education Committee since 2014 and now the Board of Directors, in addition to serving on the Pennsylvania State University Stuckeman School Board, and the Awesome Raleigh Foundation.
Alpa is passionate about combining process and product when working with communities to create an impact at scale through built environments that can address critical infrastructure issues. Alpa is the Executive Director of Critical Places, a non-profit based in India that works with marginalized communities for developing solutions to issues of the built environment. She is also the founding partner of her named mission-based design consultancy and Assistant Professor in the Department of Landscape Architecture at University of Florida. As an architect, landscape architect and urbanist, Alpa has worked on projects spanning the globe from India, Afghanistan, Abu Dhabi, Switzerland and USA, to realize the outstanding potential of as well as the limitations of strategic and operational leadership manifest in the design disciplines.
Alpa is a recipient of the Council of Educators in Landscape Architecture Award for Excellence in Design Studio Teaching, the Dumbarton Oaks Mellon Fellowship in Urban Landscape Studies, and the LAF Fellowship for Innovation and Leadership. Alpa holds a Masters degree in Urban Design from Harvard University's Graduate School of Design, a Masters degree in Landscape Architecture from Louisiana State University, and a Bachelor of Architecture from NIT Raipur, India. She serves on the Editorial Board of the Journal of Architectural Education JAE, and the Alumni Council of Harvard Graduate School of Design.
New York, NY
Signe Nielsen, FASLA, is a principal of MNLA (formerly known as Mathews Nielsen Landscape Architects), located in New York City. Founded in 1994, the firm focuses on advancing resilience and equity across a spectrum of public and not-for-profit projects, primarily in the northeast. Ms. Nielsen is particularly engaged in projects that seek to change outmoded policies through advocacy, design, and research. Outside of her practice, Ms. Nielsen is the President of NYC’s Public Design Commission, an agency of city government that reviews all projects and artworks built on city property. Over the past ten years, Ms. Nielsen has served on multiple panels initiated by the US Green Building Council and Mayor’s Office on Sustainability to recommend changes to existing codes to promote environmental responsibility and to create guidelines for critical facilities based on climate change predictions. In addition, Ms. Nielsen is a full professor at Pratt Institute where she has taught for nearly 40 years. In Ms. Nielsen’s role as a founding partner of MNLA, she is driven by the intersection of design and policy and how these two different drivers of action can be aligned to harness stakeholder endorsement and public benefit.
Ms. Nielsen’s interest in joining the Board of LAF is a clear outgrowth of her years of commitment to advocacy and change as well as to advancing the reach of landscape architects. LAF is a small but mighty organization with long arms in terms of its reach within the profession and beyond. It is my honor and pleasure to contribute to the goals, principles, and advocacy of this exemplary organization.
New York, NY
Kate Orff is a landscape architect envisioning new forms of public space that reveal and revive the hidden ecological systems underlying our built environments and encourage urban residents to become active stewards of their natural surroundings. As founding Principal of SCAPE, a landscape architecture and urban design studio, Orff’s work ranges from large-scale coastal infrastructure initiatives to the design of city parks, as well as book-length publications, museum exhibitions, and self-guided podcast tours that invite city dwellers to explore the natural histories of their regions. Kate Orff received a B.A. (1993) from the University of Virginia and an M.L.A. (1997) from Harvard University. She is the author of Toward an Urban Ecology (2016) and co-editor of Gateway: Visions for an Urban National Park (2011). She is an associate professor and director of the Urban Design Program in the Graduate School of Architecture, Planning, and Preservation at Columbia University.
Through restorative, futurist frameworks that emphasize justice, zie addresses the perceptual and physical interpretations of equitable and just access to public space. Zir work includes collaborations with community stakeholders, artists, organizers, and municipalities on projects that address challenges ranging from food access disparities, gentrification, and affirming spaces for Black womxn, non-binary, and femmes. Breeze holds a BArch and MLA from North Carolina State University. Zie is a 2016 LAF Olmsted Scholar and the co-founder of Blackscapes, an initiative that explores the intersection of the Black experience in the built environment.
Richard Roark is a Landscape Architect and Partner at OLIN. Physical and social resilience are the principle drivers in his work, which spans a range of scales and types from planning a climate adaptation plan for New York’s food distribution system, to building a resilience park in Hoboken New Jersey, organizing a community based economy in the Eastern Market of Detroit, and connecting Los Angeles across the 51 miles of the LA River. Richard is committed to bringing communities together in the public realm while ensuring development creates value without displacement, is socially just, and creates opportunities for many.
Margie has a passion for design, people, and continuous improvement. At Landscape Forms, she is building upon the solid foundation laid over the past 50 years and focusing on new ways to expand the company’s reach. Margie graduated from the Eli Broad College of Business at Michigan State University and studied marketing, labor relations, and communications at Purdue University. She began her career as a CPA with Ernst & Young followed by executive leadership in the architecture industry.
Los Angeles, CA
Chris Torres is a landscape and urban designer creating public spaces that merge extraordinary experiences, everyday culture and resilient systems. He is currently the Principal of Superjacent Studio and Vice President of the Jerde Partnership. He has a decade of domestic and international experience creating projects ranging from urban and ecological systems to site specific interventions. Prior to co-founding Superjacent, Chris practiced at Rios Clementi Hale Studios, Walt Disney Imagineering, Skidmore Owings & Merrill and the public art program at LA METRO. Beyond his work as a practitioner, he was a visiting researcher of Urban Design at the Queensland University of Technology, lecturer in Landscape Architecture and Urbanism at USC, Vice President of the LA Forum for Architecture and Urban Design and member of Mayor Garcetti’s Great Street’s design advisory committee. He received a BA in Urban Studies from Loyola Marymount University and MLA from UC Berkeley, where he co-founded the GROUND UP Journal.
McKenzie is a Senior Designer at MKSK Studios in Columbus, Ohio, a design practice driven to create innovative and impactful work in the public realm throughout the Midwest. She has contributed to a range of complex urban projects both in the Midwest and across the country as a past designer at Reed Hilderbrand and Michael Van Valkenburgh Associates in Boston, Massachusetts. Her project portfolio includes The Alamo World Heritage Site in San Antonio, Pier 4 in Boston's Seaport District, and ongoing resiliency and connectivity development along Columbus's riverfront. McKenzie was the undergraduate 2013 National Olmsted Scholar, beginning her engagement with LAF.
LAF's mission to amplify the urgency of topics like sustainability and resilience through landscape architecture became a lightning rod that synthesized McKenzie's emerging love for the profession and deep-rooted desire to serve her community. There were urgency and agency in the call for landscape architects to elevate our skills and better the world which continues to drive her professional work. One of the things she is most passionate about is LAF's work to identify and mentor young leaders in the profession. Understanding the criticality of supporting and elevating emerging designers as they discover their potential for positive impact, as well as the importance of forward motion on issues like climate change and inclusion, McKenzie, recognizes her position on the Board as a pivotal opportunity to broaden scope and dig into important work.
Founder and Principal
Ernest C. Wong, Founder and Principal of site design group, ltd. (site), has been instrumental in the development of both the firm and the landscape architecture profession in the City of Chicago. In managing the firm for over 29 years, site has established a reputation for creative design solutions, and thoughtful, community-oriented urban spaces. An advocate of contextually designed public open spaces and urban parks, Mr. Wong has directed numerous acclaimed projects including Mary Bartelme Park, Henry Palmisano Park (formerly Stearns Quarry), and Argyle Shared Street. Recent projects include Positioning Pullman, the McCormick Square development, the River Edge Ideas Lab, the Old Chicago Post Office redevelopment, and the new Riverwalk East.
Through professional and service leadership, Mr. Wong has advocated for and helped shaped Chicago’s Chinatown community through transformative, community-oriented projects including the multi-phased Tom Memorial Park, the Chinatown Vision Plan, the Chinatown Branch Library, Cermak Road Streetscape, Wentworth Avenue Streetscape, Cermak Green Line Station, and the ongoing Wells and Wentworth Connector. A strong proponent of civic and community engagement, Mr. Wong sits on the board of numerous service organizations and professional juries including the Driehaus Award for Architectural Excellence in Community Design, Near South Planning Board, and the Chicago Landmarks Commission. In addition, Mr. Wong is a frequent speaker at universities as well as design, business, and diversity conferences, including serving as the keynote speaker at the National Minority Supplier Development Council in 2016.
Ex Officio Representatives
Immediate Past President
American Society of Landscape Architects
Wendy Miller, FASLA was President of the American Society of Landscape Architects in 2019-2020. She has spent over 30 years as a registered landscape architect focusing on urban design and transportation. Miller’s career started in the public sector working in local government developing environmental ordinances and promoting aesthetic improvements through design, project development, and public awareness. Her transition to transportation planning and policy with the Winston-Salem Urban Area Metropolitan Planning Organization opened a new avenue of work and commitment to creating humane transportation infrastructure. Miller believes having landscape architects involved in shaping transportation corridors - our most ubiquitous public space – is critical.
Starting a second career as principal of her small consulting firm, Miller provides expertise in corridor design solutions, public involvement, and planning strategies to prepare communities for the new and disruptive transportation technologies on the horizon.
University of Texas at Arlington
Dr. Taner Özdil is Assosciate Professor in the Graduate Program in Landscape Architecture and is also Associate Director for Research at The Center for Metropolitan Density at The University of Texas at Arlington. His scholarly and professional works lie in the interdisciplinary areas of design and planning fields. Dr. Özdil’s research activities focus on economical, environmental and social value creation through design and planning with particular emphasis on mixed-use developments, transit oriented developments and districts, and high density urban areas. He teaches graduate level courses that focus on urban design, urban landscape, environmental planning and Geodesign (GIS) with specific concentration to North Texas region.