SACRAMENTO – In an effort spearheaded by California Department of Transportation Landscape Architect, Lisa Worthington, April 2013 was officially recognized as National Landscape Architecture Month by the State of California. On April 17th, the California State Legislature voted on and passed Resolution 714 “in honor of the legacy of Landscape Architects in shaping and protecting California landscapes” (read the full text of the resolution here). The Resolution was graciously sponsored by Assembly Speaker John A. Perez, who was steadfast in expediting the resolution to vote so that it could be passed during the month of April.
Lisa began the effort months prior, in December 2012, after finding inspiration in an editorial on Landscape Architecture’s Ascendance and her recent read of Justin Martin’s 2011 biography of Frederick Law Olmsted, Genius of Place. She found the editorial’s evaluation of the profession relevant to the state of both public and private practice and in the Olmsted biography she was reminded of our founder’s legacy in the State. She imagined, “wouldn’t it be wonderful if there were public recognition in California for the contributions of our profession?” She began about the task of drafting proclamation language and learning the process to have a resolution passed in the State legislature. She consulted with the Sacramento headquarters of the Professional Engineers in California Government (PECG), a union that represents the professional interests of Engineers, Land Surveyors, Architects and Landscape Architects in state government, for guidance. Assembly Speaker John A. Perez was clearly an advocate for our work, a willing sponsor of the Resolution, and willing to call a vote.
The passage of Resolution 714 collectively honors over 3,000 landscape architects practicing in our State and brings public recognition to the life-enriching work we do. Lisa has been energized by this process and believes that visibility of landscape architecture’s civic role, connecting regional sustainability goals to “designed-in” layers of environmental benefits, such as stormwater infiltration, and multi-modal infrastructure for a “complete street” is the leading wave our profession could ride in the years to come. On behalf of the California Council of the ASLA, representing the four California Chapters, we thank Lisa for her service.
For more information on this story, please contact Dalton LaVoie.