Having the privilege of taking over as the chair of the Landscape/Land Use Planning PPN group has been a challenge and an awakening. All of us who serve on other boards and committees and still maintain an office, recognize the challenges of time and commitment. It is a gift—and a sacrifice—to carve out time to participate and support the PPN. Of particular note is the commitment and support of others who gave their time; mainly Mark O’Rourke and Mary Bedard, Vice Chairs, and Rachel
Shaw, Professional Practice Manager of ASLA, who provided survey summaries, articles and oversight for this first newsletter of our group.
My awakening occurred upon learning the diverse interests of the Landscape/Land Use Planning PNN members as reported in the
2007 membership survey. The previous chair of the group and ASLA staff developed the survey to get a profile of members’ interests and expectations for the PPN membership. Mary Bedard, Mark O’Rourke and I have provided a summary of the findings in this newsletter. The survey allows us to understand the composition of the group, define categories of
member interest, identify professional concerns and gauge inclinations to contribute to the network.
But the most profound awakening for me was discovering the defining characteristic of all who participated in the survey—their deep understanding of the human need for a quality environment, and the correlation between good design and a city’s economic and social stability. Our goal as leaders is to provide discussion and dialog so we can direct this tremendous responsibility we share to shape both the private and public spaces in which people carry out their lives.
Martin Flores, ASLA, is Director of Urban Design and Planning at Rick
Engineering and can be reached at firstname.lastname@example.org.