WASHINGTON, D.C. - Chicago-based landscape architect Susan Jacobson, FASLA, was voted President-Elect of the American Society of Landscape Architects this week. Jacobson will officially become the Society's president-elect following the ASLA Annual Meeting in San Jose this October and serve as ASLA president from October 1, 2003, through September 31, 2004.
"ASLA's strength is our membership. ASLA's vision and mission are clearly established, and now is the time for us to reach out and speak up," Jacobson said. "We need to share our wealth of information and enable our members to make a difference in everything they do."
Jacobson earned a Bachelor of Landscape Architecture from the University of Illinois, Champaign-Urbana. She became a full member of the American Society of Landscape Architects in 1982 and was elected a Fellow of the Society in 1995. Jacobson is the owner of Bartells/Jacobson Design, a private design firm in the suburban Chicago area. The firm specializes in public work, park and recreation design, and commercial landscape plans. Jacobson worked in both the public and private sectors of landscape architecture before starting her own firm.
Jacobson was chapter president in 1989 when the State of Illinois passed a licensure law for landscape architects and the chapter started publishing an annual magazine. On a national level, she has been part of several committees and task forces and ASLA Vice-President for Communication 1997-99.
In addition to her volunteer work within the Society, Jacobson has lectured for the Garden Clubs of Illinois, the University of Illinois Landscape Architecture Program, the Chicago Chapter of Women in Architecture, and several area schools. She has juried awards for the students at the University of Illinois, the Indiana Chapter, the Texas Chapter, and the Vermont Chapter. Jacobson also volunteers locally within her community in the school district, her church, and the village government.
Jacobson plans to focus on ASLA membership support, building partnerships with government agencies and allied organizations, and developing ASLA's information resources. One program she is dedicated to is implementing the Historic American Landscape Survey (HALS) in cooperation with the National Park Service and the Library of Congress. "The preservation of landscape treasures is something that the public as a whole can understand," Jacobson said. "This creates an opportunity for us to inform the public about another facet of what landscape architects do and why it is so important to their well-being and national pride."
Founded in 1899, ASLA represents landscape architects nationwide. The organization advances the profession through education, advocacy, networking opportunities, and publications. Landscape architects integrate elements of the natural and built environment to produce sites that are both functional and beautiful. For more information on ASLA, visit www.asla.org.