Career in Architecture
Laura, widely regarded as an expert in the field of landscape technology and sustainability, provides leadership and knowledge that inform design, construction, and post-construction maintenance of MVVA’s projects. Her particular areas of expertise include the integration of biological management programs in planting design, the use of sustainable soils, and the utilization of all landscape materials. In collaboration with Matt Urbanski and Michael Van Valkenburgh, Laura serves as a Managing Principal for planning and design projects from their earliest phases and oversees the technical aspects of MVVA’s landscapes firm-wide.
As part of her professional advocacy, Laura lectures on technical innovations developed through the work of MVVA, highlighting the potential for creative overlap between landscape technology and landscape design. Laura teaches classes in landscape technology at Harvard University’s Graduate School of Design, where she has been a lecturer for 20 years. Laura was a Resource Team Member for Soils in the development of the Sustainable Sites Initiative undertaken by the ASLA, Lady Bird Johnson Wildflower Center and U.S. Botanical Garden. She has been a reviewer for the Soils chapter of the forthcoming Sustainable Sites Initiative Handbook and for Philip and Timothy Craul’s book entitled Soil Design Protocols for Landscape Architects. She has served on multiple design and awards juries for professional design societies and private institutions. Laura has participated in the Mayor’s Institute on City Design in Charleston, SC and has worked with former Mayor Kathleen Taylor in Tulsa, Oklahoma to complete an urban design case study for repurposing the Evans-Fintube Brownfield site. In 2010, Laura received the Boston Society of Architects Women in Design Award of Excellence and was featured in Leaders in the Field: Women in Landscape Architecture, a film by Julie Gawendo and Izabela Riano.
Laura received her Bachelor of Landscape Architecture from Ohio State University in 1983. Her undergraduate studies in botany at the University of Maryland helped inform her comprehensive and science-based approach to sustainable landscape practices. Laura is a licensed landscape architect in Massachusetts, Louisiana, Ohio, and Pennsylvania.
Press and Awards
Women in Design Award of Excellence (2010)