American Society of Landscape Architects
Northern California Chapter



Susan M. Goltsman, FASLA 1949-2016

As a founding principal of MIG, Inc., Susan Goltsman, FASLA, was an internationally recognized expert in designing and programing inclusive environments for children, youth and families. She created and tirelessly advocated for environments that promote social and economic equity and contribute to our physical, creative, emotional, social and intellectual development. Susan’s original research and her design approach established new relationships between healthy human development and the environment in a range of settings including parks, community facilities, schools, museums, zoos, and natural environments. Through her efforts, what were once aspirations are now foundational elements in park and urban planning and design.

Susan wrote many acclaimed books; taught at UC Berkeley, Stanford and San Francisco State; and received numerous prestigious […]

Posted in ASLA-NCC, Uncategorized. .

ASLA-NCC Chapter Firms Selected as Finalists in Local Competition

Three out of the four teams selected to compete in a San Jose based design competition are members of our local chapter.   Congratulations to CMG, Meyer Silberberg and WRT.  The competition is to redesign St. James Park, a 7.4-acre downtown park and was sponsored by the City of San Jose’s Parks, Recreation and Neighborhood Services Department.  The jury meets this Saturday, October 15th to hear each of the four teams present their designs in person in San Jose.  The event is open to the public.  The jury will make a final decision on the top ranked firm after the event.  The top ranked firm will be invited to enter into contract negotiations with the City of San Jose to […]

Posted in ASLA-NCC. .
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2016-17 Executive Committee Election Results

We would like to congratulate the members elected to the ASLA NCC Executive Committee for the 2016-17 term! They join President Elizabeth Boults and Past President Marybeth Harasz and CCASLA Representative Cathy Blake on the 2016-2017 Executive Committee. The committee is entirely dependent on the volunteer efforts of members who are willing to donate their time and energy to making our chapter strong, vibrant and successful. While the Executive Committee are the leaders of our Chapter, it is important that you, our members, attend our events and get involved in volunteering as well. The chapter is only as strong as the members that participate and help us to develop into the chapter that represents you.


Carolyne Orazi, ASLA
President […]

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Plant and Prune Trees in Oakland with the Sierra Club Tree Team (Design Help Needed, Too)

by Derek Schubert, ASLA; SCTT Coordinator

The Sierra Club Tree Team (SCTT) plants and prunes public trees in Oakland, and we are looking for some landscape architects and their friends to help us keep up the good work.  Planting or pruning with us on the weekend is a great way to complement an office-based job. We welcome anyone who wants to help, not only Oakland residents.

The SCTT works to increase the City of Oakland’s tree canopy so that every Oakland resident, worker, and visitor can enjoy the environmental, community, and aesthetic benefits of trees. Oakland used to run a robust municipal program of planting and maintaining public trees, but the City Council cut the funding from it in […]

Posted in Events. .
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Sullivan to Receive the Jot D. Carpenter Teaching Medal

At the upcoming annual meeting in New Orleans, ASLA-NCC member Chip Sullivan will receive the Jot D. Carpenter Teaching Medal for significant and sustained excellence in landscape architecture education. In his nearly 30-year career in the Department of Landscape Architecture and Environmental Planning at the University of California, Berkeley, Sullivan has inspired thousands of students with his iconic publications, exceptional instructional methods and overwhelming belief in the power of landscape architecture to create positive change in the world. Berets off to Chip! 

Posted in ASLA-NCC. .
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ASLA-NCC, Events

Business Development Lecture

by Jennifer Ng

At the ASLA lecture presented on Thursday, 9/15, James Lord (Surfacedesign), Jeanette Hill (DES), Rene Bihan (SWA), and Sara Peschel (Ground works) discussed their firms’ business development strategies and project values. James took the audience through Surfacedesign’s progression through the years and demonstrated how relationships and word of mouth can be a powerful ally. Jeanette showed a series of projects across the arc of her career. Her projects were tied together by her passion for connecting people to each other and helping them find ownership in their community.

To contrast Jeanette and James, Rene discussed business development more globally as it relates to SWA’s 59 year history and inter-generational leadership. He offered business development advice to […]

Posted in ASLA-NCC, Events. .
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UCB Student Awards

By Carmen Erasmus

Pablo Alfaro, Micaela Bazo, Kushal Lachhwani, and Anna Thompson.



The 2016 ASLA-NCC student awards were presented by Carmen Erasmus at UC Berkeley’s Reception for Graduating LAEP students at Blake Garden on Sunday, May 15. Earlier this month Elizabeth Boults and Dave Mitchell judged the students’ work and found it to be of exceptional quality, resulting in all nominees receiving the Certificate of Honor which is the highest award.

The graduate student winners are: Pablo Alfaro, Micaela Bazo, Kushal Lachhwani, and Anna Thompson.  The undergraduate winners are Mariana Ricker and Alexa Vaughn.  Congratulations to all!

Carmen Erasmus, Mariana Ricker and Alexa Vaughn

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“I Advocate,” 2016

“I Advocate,” 2016

Submitted by Elizabeth Boults, ASLA

On May 19, 2016, four representatives from the Northern California Chapter participated in ASLA Advocacy Day in Washington DC.  Marybeth Harasz, Amy Cupples, Joanna Salem, and Elizabeth Boults joined hundreds of other ASLA members who met with their House and Senate officials to promote our profession and ask for support of legislation critical to landscape architecture practice. Well-informed with talking points and infographics prepared by ASLA’s government affairs team, we specifically discussed the need to fund the National Parks centennial challenge and promote Resilient Streets initiatives by opposing any amendments or bills that limit green infrastructure in transportation projects. Scoring over 15,000 steps on our pedometers, it was an empowering and rewarding day on […]

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ASLA-NCC, Events

North Beach Sketch Crawl

By April Philips, FASLA

On an unusual rainy Saturday in May a group of intrepid urban sketchers met in Washington Square, umbrellas and sketchbooks in hand, to participate in an afternoon of on location sketching and café hopping.  Led by drawing champions Chip Sullivan and Jim Richards with a little assist from myself, April Philips, the group explored the treasures and iconic places of this charming San Francisco neighborhood.

Chip led off the afternoon expedition with funny historical anecdotes and his curated map of North Beach that highlighted places to consider drawing. City Lights, Vesuvio’s, The Condor Club, Zoetrope Studios, Jack Kerouac, and Mario’s Cigar Bar were just the tip of the iceberg in this charming […]

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Indemnity Bill Showing Success in California Legislature

By Jon Wreschinsky, CCASLA Delegate

As reported in the last newsletter article, CCASLA has been working with our allied design professional organizations in support of passage of Senate Bill 885 (Wolk) – Construction contracts: indemnity. To refresh your memory, the Bill as currently proposed would specify, for construction contracts entered into on or after January 1, 2017, that a design professional, as defined, only has the duty to defend claims that arise out of, or pertain or relate to, negligence, recklessness, or willful misconduct of the design professional. Under the bill, a design professional would not have a duty to defend claims against any other person or entity arising from a construction project, except that person or entity’s reasonable defense costs […]

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