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    The Wisconsin Chapter American Society of Landscape Architects (WI ASLA) is the professional society that represents the landscape architecture profession in Wisconsin.  Our members typically include licensed landscape architects, allied professionals and students in Wisconsin.

    Our mission aligns with the National ASLA.  The purpose of the Wisconsin Chapter of the American Society of Landscape Architects “shall be the advancement of education and skill in the art and science of landscape architecture and the promotion of the profession of landscape architecture as an instrument of service in the public welfare.  To this end the Chapter shall seek to effectuate within the Chapter territory the aims and policies of the American Society of Landscape Architects, Inc.”  We offer our members the opportunity to network, build business, and expand their professional knowledge and expertise.  The Chapter also promotes the discipline of landscape architecture and advocates policy positions that advance sustainable, appropriate, and environmentally friendly practices.

    President’s Message

    Recap of 2014 CPC Advocacy Day and Mid Year Meetings

    Last week Wisconsin Chapter ASLA leadership travelled to Washington DC for Advocacy Day and Mid-Year Chapter Presidents Council and Board of Trustee meetings. Thursday was Advocacy Day where I joined Trustee Gary Brown, FASLA, Membership VP Shawn Kelly, FASLA and Communications VP Pam Linn, ASLA on Capitol Hill to visit with Senators Ron Johnson and Tammy Baldwin and Representative Mark Pocan’s Staff.

    Our discussions emphasize how Landscape Architects influence public policy, on local, regional and national scales. The work that landscape architects impact include Green Infrastructure and Stormwater Management, Complete Streets, Safe Routes to School and Bicycle Planning among others. The senators and representatives are in agreement that both improving and maintaining public infrastructure are vital responsibilities of the Federal government, and that Constituents must reach out to their elected representatives and senators to communicate their concerns. This presents an excellent opportunity to highlight our Chapter members’ projects as examples of how Landscape Architects solve environmental issues.

    On Friday the Chapter Presidents Council met to share ideas, chapter initiatives and network. Discussions included Chapter fundraising, strategic planning, partnering with allied professions, membership recruitment strategies, and managing Chapter financial issues. Discussions, panel discussions and roundtables generated some excellent idea sharing, which the Wisconsin Chapter will be able to make good use of.

    Saturday’s agenda included speeches by President Elect candidates Chad Danos, FASLA and our own Shawn Kelly, FASLA. Both candidates did an excellent job of presenting their viewpoints of how they would energize ASLA if elected. This will be an excellent campaign!

    The main reason that we participate is to network and bring back initiatives that the Wisconsin Chapter can enact to improve the profession of Landscape Architecture and our member practices.

    More Chapter member involvement, both committee and advocacy. I define advocacy as outreach to both our federal and state legislators, and reaching out to allied professions.

    I network extensively with fellow chapter leaders, and I’m essentially embarrassed at our lack of sponsorships to fund the short term and long term mission of our Chapter. We will reach out to contact both businesses and individuals who can make a financial contribution to our Chapter. I will be encouraging each Chapter member to reach out to potential sponsors to support the Chapter.

    An initiative I have been working to generate has been to bring regional Chapter leadership together to identify issues of concerns and work together to address and improve them. This “Great Lakes” group will meet this summer to discuss how to help each other protect our professional licenses, market our profession and work with allied professions. This will significantly improve our practices.

    Please feel free to contact myself or any Chapter Ex Comm member with any idea or concern. We always welcome your input!

    Jay Gehler, ASLA