For Immediate Release
New York, June 10, 2015
Contact: Kathy Shea, 212.269.2984 [email protected]
The American Society of Landscape Architects, New York Chapter (ASLA-NY) is very proud to share our 2015 National Honor Winners just released. Selected by The American Society of Landscape Architect’s (ASLA)’s Board of Trustees, the Honors represent the highest awards ASLA presents each year. The honors will be presented at the President’s Dinner on November 9, held during the 2015 ASLA Annual Meeting & EXPO in Chicago.
Paul Friedberg, FASLA has been selected to receive the ASLA Medal. The ASLA Medal is the highest honor the American Society of Landscape Architects (ASLA) may bestow upon a landscape architect whose lifetime achievements and contributions to the profession have had a unique and lasting impact on the welfare of the public and the environment. “Paul Friedberg is a true pioneer of landscape architecture and urban design who has dedicated his life to providing public places that not only break boundaries of traditional design, but more importantly increase the quality of life for those who use these spaces. His design response to how people interact with their built environment has greatly impacted landscape design and will continue to shape our profession for generations to come,” states Jennifer Nitzky, President of ASLA-NY.
Signe Nielsen FASLA, notes in her letter of recommendation, “Paul continues to be a thought leader in our profession by advocating for social equity that has pervaded his professional and academic careers.” Paul has been a member of ASLA for 50 years and our chapter is so thrilled that he will be honored with the ASLA Medal in this milestone year.
Thomas Balsley, FASLA will receive the ASLA Design Medal, which recognizes an individual landscape architect who has produced a body of exceptional design work at a sustained level for a period of at least ten years. Thomas Balsley, FASLA, is the principal designer of a New York City-based, award-winning design firm, Thomas Balsley Associates, best known for its fusion of landscape and urbanism in our public parks and plazas. With over 35 years of practice and a deeply held belief that our parks are among society’s truest forms of democracy, Thomas Balsley has built a reputation for creating public spaces that enhance and enrich lives of the individuals and communities who inhabit them through landscape architecture and urban design. “Through all his projects Tom deftly addresses multiple local user groups, providing experiences to enhance everyone’s life,” states Annette Wilkus FASLA, Principal of SiteWorks Landscape Architecture.
Jennifer Nitzky ASLA, comments in the nominating statement, “He is an inspiration to landscape architects all over the world and has given back to many communities by providing dynamic,engaging and creative spaces that elevate the true spirit of the site.”


Design Trust for Public Space will be this year’s recipient of The Olmsted Medal, which recognizes individuals, organizations, agencies, or programs outside the profession of landscape architecture for environmental leadership, vision, and stewardship. The Medal honors Frederick Law Olmsted, considered the founder of the American landscape architecture profession and steward of the environment. Since 1995, the Design Trust for Public Space has deployed a unique project model to bring together government agencies, community groups and private-sector experts to transform and evolve the city’s landscape. Today, the non-profit organization is a nationally-recognized incubator that transforms and evolves the city’s landscape with city agencies and community collaborators. Their work can be seen, felt and experienced throughout all five boroughs of New York City-from parks and plazas to streets and public buildings. The Design Trust for Public Space is currently leading a new project: The World’s Park: Reconnecting a Regional Park with its Neighbors in partnership with the NYC Parks Department and the Queens Museum to work with local residents in the planning, design, and stewardship of Flushing Meadows Corona Park.
In the nominating statement, ASLA-NY Past President Nette Compton ASLA writes, “Through all of this fantastic work, the Design Trust has influenced and shaped the design and policies of New York City. In doing so, their work inspires and informs cities around the world, which look to New York as a testing ground for a range of creative solutions to complex challenges within urban environments.”

Gregory Long
Gregory Long will receive the LaGasse Medal in the Non-Landscape Architect category for contributions to the management and conservation of natural resources and public landscapes. Long, the president and CEO of the New York Botanical Garden, has devoted 25 years to the restoration and revitalization of one of the world’s greatest botanical gardens and research institutions. ASLA recognizes him for achieving the remarkable resurgence of this century-old garden, often in times of challenging austerity. For 15 years, Long has promoted and supported the work of landscape architects from the United States and abroad through the botanical garden’s annual fall lectures known as the Landscape Design Portfolios series.
Honorary Membership in ASLA
This designation is to recognize persons other than landscape architects whose achievements of national or international significance or influence have provided notable service to the profession of landscape architecture. The following have been selected for Honorary Membership:
Susan Chin
Susan Chin is the Executive Director of the Design Trust for Public Space, a New York City nonprofit organization at the forefront of shaping the public realm since 1995. Susan joined the organization in 2011, and has shepherded a number of projects during her tenure that are models for urban design. In many of these projects, landscape architects play a central role. All of these projects have a hallmark of cross-disciplinary pursuit of innovative solutions to important local and regional resources across New York City. Implementation of “Five Borough Farm Phase II,” a citywide urban agriculture policy, will make more land and resources available. While projects have a place in New York, their structure, findings and ideas are relevant nationally and internationally. As the former Assistant Commissioner for Capital Projects for the New York City Department of Cultural Affairs, Susan dedicated 23 years to commissioning numerous innovative and high performance architecture and public art, valued at over $3B at cultural organizations citywide.
Charles McKinney
As the Principal Urban Designer for NYC Parks, Charles McKinney, Affiliate ASLA, is leading the master planning process for flagship parks. Under his direction, the Department is exploring responses to the design imperatives of the 21st century, web-based planning tools and communication, as well as the role of planning in stimulating community-based leadership. He completes this work in a thorough and intentional way, engaging the community and design consultants through a detailed process. He has worked collaboratively with many landscape architects through this process. Previously, as Chief of Design at NYC Parks (overseeing 100+ landscape architects, designers, engineers, and architects within the department), he provided design direction for park projects throughout New York City that strengthened the relationship between architecture, landscape, ecology, community, and park operations. His work occurred under the Bloomberg Administration, recorded as the largest era of park investment in New York City since the WPA.
Warrie Price
For more than two decades, Warrie Price has been a powerful force in reacquainting Downtown Manhattan with its open space, history, and legacy of natural abundance. Through The Battery Conservancy, which she founded in 1994, Warrie has overseen the redesign and reconstruction of New York City’s birthplace and Downtown Manhattan’s largest public park. What was once a barren hardscape has become a variegated urban oasis with sustainable year-round gardens, an urban farm, moments of levity and play, and honored tributes to the past. Every detail of The Battery reflects Warrie’s unflagging enthusiasm and commitment to stewardship of the natural world, history, and city life.
Robert Yaro
Robert D. Yaro is President Emeritus of the Regional Plan Association and a senior advisor to the organization, which promotes the livability, vitality and sustainability of the New York metropolitan region. During his tenure, the association began both national and international initiatives to advocate for regional planning across the country and around the world, working tirelessly and compassionately with landscape architects everywhere. Yaro believes in the beautiful construction of outdoor spaces and that landscape architects are the best qualified design professionals to address them.
A complete listing of honorees and further coverage can be found at
About the American Society of Landscape Architects, New York Chapter
The American Society of Landscape Architects (ASLA) is the national professional association for landscape architects. Founded in 1899, the association represents over 15,000 members and features 49 professional chapters and 76 student chapters. The territory of the New York Chapter encompasses the five boroughs of New York City, Nassau and Suffolk counties on Long Island, and Westchester, Putnam, Dutchess, Orange and Rockland counties. The Society’s mission is to lead in the planning, design and care of both our natural and built environments. While keeping pace with the ever-changing forces of nature and technology, landscape architects increasingly have a profound impact on the way people live, work and play.
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