Asst. Prof. John Graham, Lake Superior State University, PhD (2016), is an applied ecologist originally from central Wisconsin.  With degrees in forest ecology, biology, and French from the University of Wisconsin -- Stevens Point, he most recently worked as a consulting forester and in renewable energy.  His undergraduate and Master's research explored eastern deciduous fire ecology and wilderness community succession following wildfire and wind disturbances.  John is especially interested in the application of ecological principles to the design of functioning, versatile landscapes. His current research focuses on countryside biogeography,  using transdisciplinary methods and stakeholder engagement, his work examines the effects of alternative, perennial, agricultural practices – agroforestry and biofuel production – on functional landscape connectivity for native pollinators and amphibians.

Irem Daloglu, PhD (2013),  is an Assistant Professor at the Institute of Environmental Sciences, Bogazici University (Istanbul, Turkey).  She is interested in studying coupled human and natural systems with the use of models. Her research focuses on understanding the impacts of policies on freshwater and agricultural ecosystems. Her teaching interests include agricultural and water quality policy and modeling.

Asst. Prof. Meltem Erdem Kaya, PhD (2012), is currently working in the Faculty of Architecture in the Department of Landscape Architecture at Istanbul Technical University. She worked as a visiting scholar in the Landscape Ecology, Perception, and Design Lab between 2010 and 2011. She received her Ph.D. with the thesis entitled “An Evaluation Matrix Proposal for Identification, Preservation and Development of Landscape Characteristics of Rural Settlements.” Her research interests focus on contemporary approaches and environmental systems in landscape design, and rural landscape planning and design. 

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Assoc. Prof. Zhifang Wang, MLA, PhD (2008), is an associate professor in College of Architecture and Landscape Architecture, Peking University. She is interested in sustainable design, rural development, and ecological aesthetics. She works to advance the applications of ecological research in planning and design while highlighting public acceptance and public education of environmentally beneficial landscape.      Website:

Sandra Kosek-Sills, MLA 2000, PhD 2004, Using a hierarchy of landscape perception to align ecology, aesthetics, and socially relevant decision making scales in residential landscapes. The influence of cultural concepts of "nature"; and individual ecological knowledge on the perception of landscapes designed for ecological function.

Current Position: Coastal and Estuarian Land Conservation Program Coordinator, Ohio DNR Office of Coastal Management

Prof. Robert C. Corry, Guelph University, MLA (1994), PhD (2002), A Landscape Index Approach to Evaluating the Small Mammal Habitat Quality of Designed Scenarios for Agricultural Watersheds Current position: Associate Professor of Landscape Architecture, and Director of the Centre for Land & Water Stewardship, University of Guelph. Teaching interests: Landscape ecological design, spatial analysis, research methods, advanced topics in landscape architecture. Research interests: Landscape metrics, agricultural landscape change, perennialization, alternative futures for rural lands.



Rachel C. Leonard, University of Michigan, MLA and MURP (2018), During her graduate studies she was a Dow Sustainability Fellow, a Rackham Merit Fellow, a Margaret Dow Towsley Scholar, and President of the Student Chapter ASLA. Rachel was a Graduate Student Instructor at the School for Environment and Sustainability and Taubman College of Architecture and Urban Planning, and a Graduate Student Research Assistant in instructor Joan Nassauer's Landscape Ecology Perception and Design Lab. Her graduate work was honored with the Landscape Architecture Faculty Award, the ASLA Certificate of Merit, and the Anthony and Johanna van Sweden Landscape Architecture Award. Rachel holds a BFA with a concentration in industrial design and public art from the Stamps School of Art and Design at the University of Michigan and she studied product design at the Norwegian University of Science and Technology, Trondheim. To better integrate this background in art and design with her interests in cultural sustainability and community development, she worked as a programmer for the Center for Educational Outreach at the University of Michigan and served as a Health Extension Agent for the Peace Corps in rural Tanzania. Rachel is interested in community participation, environmental psychology, and global and comparative issues in the planning and design of healthy, vibrant, socially-just communities.

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Alexis Heinz, Masters Graduate of Landscape Architecture and Conservation Ecology, is a former Masters student who pursued landscape architecture and conservation ecology.  As an undergraduate student, she studied plant science and horticulture at Cornell University.  She decided to attend the University of Michigan because in addition to exploring landscape architecture, she would be able to collaborate with people in other environmental and sustainability-focused fields.  In terms of career interests, she would like to integrate conservation and preservation with landscape architecture methods.

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Derell Griffin, Masters Graduate of Landscape Architecture, received his BS in Horticulture with a concentration in Landscape Design, Construction & Management from Michigan State University. He completed the Landscape Architecture program at the University of Michigan.  As a native of Detroit, he is interested in green development of highly urban areas, not only in the U.S but also in developing countries. Water management issues, whether it’s storm water or the quality of a stream is of high importance to him as well. Derell became interested in this field while learning more about social and environmental services and the effects both have on the quality of life on people, and believes everyone should have access to environments that promotes ones mental and physical well-being.


Roberto Astudillo, Masters Candidate Landscape Architecture, received his BA in Environmental Studies from the University of Illinois at Urbana-Champaign. Prior to attending the University of Michigan, he joined Chicago’s rich tech startup community as a research analyst focusing on energy efficiency technology. His current interests include urban ecological design and climate resiliency in vulnerable cities. Roberto is also interested in sustainable development and real estate development focusing on place-making, preserving ecological integrity and providing support for equitable communities.


Lanfei Liu, MLA 2017, completed her Master of Landscape Architecture in 2017 at the School of Natural Resources and Environment (SNRE). Lanfei her Bachelor of Landscape Architecture at the Beijing Forestry University with a focus on Chinese Classical Garden History and Eight Sight of Old Beijing. Before entering the MLA program at the University of Michigan, Lanfei worked for AECOM's Beijing office on design development and construction documents for residential and commercial landscape projects. With broad interest in interdisciplinary study, she is enthusiastic about applying statistical methods, programming, and business insights to the process of landscape design and planning. Now a Dow Sustainability Fellow with the Graham Institute, she is working with an interdisciplinary team and Washtenaw County's Office of Community and            Economy to propose communication strategies to increase the availability of affordable housing in local   neighborhoods. 


Sanaz Chamanara, MLA 2017, completed her Master of Landscape Architecture in 2017 at the School of Natural Resources and Environment (SNRE). She received her Bachelor's degree in Architecture from Iran University of Science and Technology (IUST) and Master's degree in Landscape Architecture from Shahid Beheshti University in Iran. She worked on the subjects of green infrastructure, urban agriculture, multi-functional landscapes and sustainable landscape design.  She is the recipient of the 2016 LAF Honor Scholarship in Memory of Joe Lalli from the Landscape Architecture Foundation (LAF). Currently she is a PhD candidate at the Urban Sustainability Research Group (Center for Sustainable Systems) at the School for Environment and Sustainability (SEAS), University of Michigan, Ann Arbor. 


Dhara Mittal, MLA 2017, completed her Master of Landscape Architecture in 2017 at the School of Natural Resources and Environment (SNRE). She received her Bachelor's in Architecture at the Maharaja Sayajirao University of Baroda in Gujarat, India. She followed her passion for the natural vignettes in her city through her work with saa synergies an ecological design firm in her city. Dhara is interested in the interactions between landscapes and culture. Upon graduation she intends to work on other natural systems related projects in India. Her imediate interest is to work on the national river interlinking project. Through her work she intends to bridge the gap between community involvement and decision making related to natural systems.

Alex de Sosa Kinzer, MLA 2017, is from Sugar Land, Texas. Alex received her B.S. in Environmental Studies at Wheaton College in Wheaton, Illinois. Before coming to the University of Michigan, Alex spent two years in Kenya working for a conservation organization focused on community-based conservation efforts. She also has experience as an agricultural consultant working on projects related to her hidden passion—insects! Alex is interested in habitat restoration in East Africa, where she hopes to bring the needs of communities and ecosystems together through sustainable design.

Qiuling Chen, MLA 2016, complete her Master of Landscape Architecture in 2016 and BA of Urban Design in 2013. She is committed to design with science and support social, environmental, and economical sustainability. She received The Landscape Architecture Faculty Award for her dedication to high standards of quality and service in Apr,2016, and Barbara Rotvig Memorial Award for great promise of creative work in Apr,2014.


Bradford Kasberg, MLA 2016, received his BA in Geography and Anthropology from Miami University and his MLA from SNRE. Prior to completing his Master’s degree he conducted research on environmental health impacts for the Miami Tribe of Oklahoma. His MLA thesis analyzed stormwater runoff capture of various theoretical GI systems in the City of Detroit. He currently is employed at SNRE as a GIS Research Associate. 


Amy Motzny, MLA 2015,  completed her Master of Landscape Architecture in 2015 where her thesis focused on the prioritization of vacant parcels for green infrastructure planning in the Cody Rouge neighborhood of Detroit. She is currently a full-time Research Scientist at Columbia University, working jointly with the School of Engineering and Applied Sciences and the Earth Institute’s Urban Design Lab. She is part of a multidisciplinary group of researchers, scientists, and practitioners investigating urban green infrastructure (GI) performance, planning and design. Her current research focuses on the development of spatial modeling tools for evaluating the ecosystem service benefits of urban green infrastructure and she is particularly interested in the socio-cultural services that GI can provide to communities.

Rachel Stehouwer Visscher, MLA/MUP 2014,  completed a dual Master of Landscape Architecture and Master of Urban Planning in 2014. She received the EPA STAR Fellowship for her research in the lab, studying exurban homeowner preferences and behaviors that had implications for ecological design and carbon storage. Rachel currently works as a landscape designer at an ecological consulting firm, H.T. Harvey and Associates, in Los Gatos, California.

Lin Lin, MLA 2013. is an Intern Landscape Architect with Gardenbleu Designs.  Along with developing designs, Lin Lin helps prepare construction documents, conceptual designs, and site analysis.


Daniel Power, MLA 2012, After working with the Greening of Detroit, Daniel Power now works as a Community Planner with Spicer Group, a planning, engineering, and surveying firm based out of Saginaw, Michigan. He works on design projects for grant-funded parks and recreation improvements and provide report-writing, mapping and general planning services related to master plan documents, recreation plan documents, and zoning administration in Michigan.

Lauren Marshall, MLA 2010,  is National Program Manager for Urban and Community Forestry in the U.S.D. A.  Forest Service in Washington, D.C..  Her work has addressed collaborative landscape restoration and developing green infrastructure across scales.

Ayehlet Cooper, MLA 2009, is a landscape architect for Shlomo Aronson Architects in Jerusalem.  She works on a variety of projects ranging from master planning a new neighborhood to the design of archeological gardens around the walls of the Old City.  She has previous work experience in the green building world as a horticulturist for Furbish Co., a green building contractor in Baltimore, Md.  While working in Professor Nassauer's lab during her MLA studies, Ayehlet contributed to research on interactions between homeowner behavior, Zone of Care, and carbon sequestration potentials in exurban residential lots.

Marcus Jones, MS and MUP 2009, helped establish the Detroit Training Center, a vocational school in the City of Detroit. In addition to being the Director, he helps develop the school's programs, curriculum's, and initiatives. 

Rebekah VanWieren, MLA 2009, master's project won a 2007 IFLA (International Federation of Landscape Architects) Jury Award. The title of the competition entry was "Time and Space as Dynamic Elements in Sustainable Brownfields Landscape Planning and Design: A Case Study in Flint, Michigan." There were a total of 170 entries, and the Flint Futures Master's Project group was the only team from the Americas to win an award. 

Flint Futures Master's Project Group, 2007: Rebekah VanWieren (MLA), Jennifer Dowdell (MLA), Emily Marshall (MLA), David Laclergue (MLA). Flint futures: Alternative futures for redevelopment of Chevy in the Hole, Flint, Michigan.

Jennifer Dowdell, MLA 2007. has been working at Biohabitats, a design and consulting firm focused on regenerative design, conservation planning and ecological restoration headquartered in Baltimore, MD. She has served as an ecological designer and planner on projects ranging from university master plans to brownfield opportunities and urban ecology in redevelopment.  She frequently contributes to the online newsletter, Leaf Litter, writing pieces about design, ecology and resilience. Through her work at Biohabitats Jennifer has also been part of the teaching faculty at the Omega Center for the Sustainable Living in Rhinebeck, NY and a guest-lectureer at Columbia University on sustainable and holistic design approaches in landscape architecture and planning.


Diane Hellekson, MLA 2000, University of Minnesota,  worked on natural resources planning and ecological stormwater design until 2005, when she joined the transportation design practice at HNTB Corporation, Minneapolis. Her work has included freeway corridor design guidelines, construction administration for historic roadside rest areas, and design-build contracts for bridges and roadways. She also is active in public art actions involving dance and urban ecology.