Updates from ASLA

ASLA 2019 Professional General Design Honor Award. Glenstone, Potomac, Maryland. PWP Landscape Architecture >

ASLA Presidential Candidates Forum Question 1: Eugenia Martin, FASLA

Question 1: What role should ASLA play in addressing the day-to-day practice- and business-related concerns and needs of the profession?

Candidate Bio

The role ASLA should play in addressing the concerns and needs of the profession is defined in ASLA’s Mission: Advocacy, Communication, Education, and Fellowship. Each of these cornerstones directly intertwine in the day-to-day practice and business of our members, non-members (who we would like to recruit to become members), emerging professionals, and students.

Advocacy of the profession directly impacts the day-to-day practice and business. ASLA’s advocacy efforts at the Federal level have helped pass legislation important to landscape architects, including federal funding for programs used by landscape architects. At the state level, ASLA’s role in advocacy protects licensure of the profession. ASLA provides tools on the website to monitor legislation in each state, allowing individuals to be mindful and ready to respond to legislation which may deregulate landscape architecture or institute occupational licensing reform measures. These advocacy efforts bring awareness of, and for, the profession, which protects landscape architects and the various work we do.

As I mentioned in my concepts and aims statement, mindful communication brings about awareness of the profession, helping to advance it with clients, policy makers, and allied professionals, but also with the general public. The ASLA website along with Landscape Architecture Magazine, provide an opportunity to highlight the profession and diversity of practice, from private sector to public sector, as well as the breadth of the practice, from residential design to parks to campuses to shoreline restoration to regional masterplans. ASLA’s communication platform, as well as how and what is communicated, is incredibly important to the health and awareness of the profession.

ASLA’s role in education consists of extensive resources, from continuing education to business tools, and is responsive to member needs. A great example is the “QuickBooks for Small Business Owners in Landscape Architecture: The Basics” webinar provided last year. Noticing a gap in business tools as it relates to small businesses, an ASLA member helped develop this webinar which was viewed live by over 230 people. Because of its success, the webinar has remained on ASLA’s business tool website for future viewing and has inspired the creation of a follow-up webinar to be planned for later this spring.

While fellowship may not seem like a concern to the day-to-day practice or business, it is definitely a need. ASLA provides opportunities to learn from each other, to celebrate successes, and to grow not only as a landscape architect, but as an individual through the Conference on Landscape Architecture and Professional Practice Networks. Being a member of ASLA provides a connection to other members from the time you are a student to well beyond retirement. Because of ASLA, I have an amazing network of colleagues and friends I can reach out to at any time as a resource, for sharing of best practices and collaboration, or for references/recommendations.

While it seems simple to look at the mission of ASLA for the role it plays in the profession, the purpose of a mission is to identify how to serve the needs of the profession it represents.

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