October 2017  

President's Report

October 2017

Acting as this year’s chapter president has been an absolute blur, but also very rewarding as a professional. I want to say a heart-felt thank you to our membership and for your investment in our chapter events and celebrations. You all have really shown your passion for our profession. I also want to thank our emerging professionals for stepping up and getting involved.

I want to say thanks to everyone that came out for our PGASLA Annual Meeting a couple of weeks ago at Topgolf, in Overland Park. It was a wonderful success. We also thanked our outgoing Executive Committee and introduced our incoming Executive Committee. Lastly, I would like to give a special thanks to our chapter sponsors.

PARKing Day/Landscapades were also successful events. Thank you to all of the Kansas State University Landscape Architecture students and all professionals throughout our chapter who supported, facilitated, and participated in those events. Please send me any photos ( you may have taken or collected, so we can possibly post those to our website.

Social Club! Once again - Michael Killeen and Ninah Butler have planned and scheduled the PGASLA Fall Social event. Leaves are starting to change color and it’s time for our third social of the year…..we’re headed to the Hi-Dive Lounge! Join us for delicious appetizers, mystery beers and great conversation with your fellow LA’s. The event will be held on Monday, October 30th, from 4:30-6:30 pm at the Hi-Dive Lounge (1411 West 39th Street, Kansas City, MO 64111). Registration is open to all, and food will be provided!

Advocacy! On behalf of the Prairie Gateway Chapter, I would like to thank Brian Roth - our VP of Advocacy, for attending the National Advocacy Summit in Milwaukee about 4 weeks ago. We also owe a special thanks to Brian for his efforts in drafting up and submitting our National Advocacy grant application with ASLA. We will let everyone know if we were successful in securing the grant funding. If awarded, the money is allocated to assist us in compensating our Missouri and Kansas state lobbyists, reimbursements for advocacy volunteer’s during our advocacy day at the state capitals, and any landscape architectural-related promotional/educational materials that we hand-out and leave behind with our legislators. Good stuff!

As always, please keep your eyes peeled for upcoming PGASLA LINKS event invites via email.


David Stokes, PLA, ASLA
President, Prairie Gateway Chapter


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Upcoming Events

PGASLA Fall Social

The temps are cooling off so that means its time for the Fall Social! We thought we'd switch things up a bit this go round. Come join us for a Monday Mystery Meet-up.

Meet us at Hi-Dive, Monday evening for some Mystery Beers and Football. Watch the Chiefs take on the Broncos. We'll cover the mysterious drinks and appetizers.

All are welcome.  Check out more details on Facebook.

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Trustee Report

Submitted by David Contag
September 30, 2017

Thanks to Chad Weinand and David Stokes for a great PG-ASLA Annual Meeting at Top Golf.  The event was well attended, the weather beautiful, and no one even duffed a shot!  It was great time to see everyone and also our sponsors that made a special effort to attend.  Donations to the ASLA Center for Landscape Architecture in Washington DC really jumped this past summer and ASLA is within 84% of the total funding needed.  Always, feel free to contact me at if you have any questions or issues that need to be raised at ASLA.

Executive Offices 

  • ASLA is hosting the Blue Ribbon Panel on Climate Change and Resilience on Thursday and Friday, led by President Vaughn Rinner, FASLA.  The panel will be comprised of 11 experts from various disciplines (to include EVP Nancy Somerville, Hon. ASLA) who will make recommendations for mitigating and adapting to climate change though resilient design. The guest speaker will be the Hon. Parris Glendening, past governor of Maryland. See more on the blue-ribbon panel in the press release here. After the panel concludes, videos of all participants as well as a video overview will be added. In January, the report and infographics will be posted to the blue-ribbon panel page.
  • President Rinner, EVP Nancy Somerville, Hon. ASLA, and State Government Affairs Director Elizabeth Hebron attended the CLARB annual meeting in Boise, Idaho last week.  Rinner and Somerville participated in a presentation and panel discussion on the health of the profession, using data from ASLA, LAAB, and CLARB on growth and diversity in the profession.  Hebron provided an overview of the licensure environment in the states and discussed successes in overcoming attacks on landscape architecture licensure. Congratulations to Director Hebron who was honored with CLARB’s Presidential Recognition Award “for her partnership, commitment, and dedication to protecting the public through the regulation of landscape architecture.”
  • President Elect Greg Miller, FASLA, was in Baton Rouge last weekend for the Louisiana Chapter meeting. Miller presented on “Landscape Architects’ Role in Resiliency.”

  • Immediate Past President Chad Danos was in Sioux Falls, SD, for the Great Plains Chapter Annual Conference where he presented on “Leading by Example” and “The Economics of Revitalization: A 30-Year Study of How Landscape Architecture Can Influence a Community.” He also presented the GPC ASLA Awards, which he and fellow Louisiana Chapter members juried.
  • Past President Thomas Tavella, FASLA, was part of the panel at Rail-Volution in Denver on Monday.  Government Affairs Manager Mark Cason moderated the discussion "Some Assembly Required-Complete Streets Implementation."  The panel also included Bertran Kuyrkendall, senior transportation engineer with Gresham, Smith and Partners, and Peg Staeheli, FASLA, of MIG Inc.    
  • EVP Somerville and PR and Communications Director Terry Poltrack met via conference call with Erik Herter of Herter Design Group to discuss the BOT branding survey results, which varied widely. The firm will continue to address logo issues as directed by the Executive Committee and expressed in the survey while also developing an alternative based on the current mark.
  • Donations to the Campaign for the ASLA Center for Landscape Architecture now total $1,255,147 or 83.7 percent of the campaign goal. ASLA is asking firms, individuals and chapters who have already given to consider making a second pledge to the campaign. ASLA will then feature the money pledged in ASLA Center Matching Challenge solicitations that that would offer to match new or increased contributions by other ASLA members and friends. Please click on ASLA Center Honor Roll to see who has already given. Please contact Director Sears with any questions.
  • Contributions to the Campaign for the ASLA Center for Landscape Architecture now total $1,254,897, which is 84 percent of goal. ASLA is reaching out to donors to the campaign who have already given to ask them to make a second pledge to the campaign to underwrite a “matching challenge fund.” The matching fund will effectively “match” new or increased gifts made to the campaign between now and the end of the year by other members and friends of ASLA.
  • Donations to the 2017 ASLA Fund currently total $32,928, which is an increase of 161 percent over the same period in 2016.


Finance, Meetings, and Business Operations

  • At 30 days out from the start of the meeting, registration and ticket revenues for the2017 ASLA Annual Meeting and EXPOexceed 3,700 registered and 87 percent of the revenue goal. Download the 2017 Annual Meeting Mobile App today from iTunes or Google Play Stores.
  • The 2017 EXPO booth sales remain at 101 percent of the budget with one month out from the conference.   
  • The 2017 LAM advertising contracts now total 95 percent of the budget.

Government Affairs

  • Last week, the U.S. House of Representatives voted 211-198 to pass the $1.23 trillion fiscal year 2018 omnibus spending package. The bill would eliminate funding for the highly popular, Transportation Investment Generating Economic Recovery (TIGER) Grants Program. During consideration of the measure, the House voted to include the Woodall Amendment, which allows state Departments of Transportation to give back funding meant for small projects like biking and walking infrastructure. ASLA is working with policy makers and coalition partners to preserve funding for TIGER and remove the Woodall Amendment language in the Senate version of the bill.  
  • ASLA joined with allied organizations and coalition partners in sending a letter to Congress opposing H.R.3354, the Fiscal Year 2018 Interior, Environment and Related Agencies Appropriations bill (“Make America Secure and Prosperous Act, 2018”). The bill would cut funding for the Environmental Protection Agency by $500 million, including an 18 percent cut to Clean Water State Revolving Funds. The bill would also cut funding for the National Park Service and Land and Water Conservation Fund.  
  • Apply for TIGER Funds! On September 6, the U.S. Department of Transportation (USDOT) announced a Notice of Funding Opportunity (NOFO) for the fiscal year 2017 TIGER Grant Program. This year's grant selections will reflect an increased focus on projects that exceed the minimum cost share requirements and on projects that serve communities in rural areas. The application deadline is October 16, 2017.  To help interested applicants learn how to compete for TIGER grants, USDOT hosted a series of webinars.  The next webinar, “How to Compete for TIGER Discretionary Grants – Rural & Tribal Applicants" will be held from 2:00 to 4:00 PM EDT on Friday, September 22. To register, please visit the TIGER Webinar Series webpage.
  • Recently, 30 chapters convened in Milwaukee, WI for the 2017 Advocacy Summit. The football-themed Summit focused on licensure threats and licensure advocacy. Specific sessions showcased recent chapter licensure battles and victories, best practices for using the Landscape Architecture Licensure Handbook, and working with a lobbyist. Participants were also involved in an advocacy site tour that included Wisconsin State Senator LaTonya Johnson and staff from U.S. Senator Ron Johnson’s office.
  • Applications are now available for the 2018 Licensure and Advocacy Grant Program. The grant program provides financial assistance to chapters for advocacy activities related to promoting and defending licensure or for advancing other state/local policy issues. Applications are due by 5:00 PM PDT on October 16.
  • The iAdvocate Network was activated to urge advocates to contact their federal legislators to ask them to support the TIGER Grants Program. This year, ASLA advocates have sent 1,743 messages on TIGER to their legislators. To date, ASLA advocates have sent a total of 6,289 messages on various federal and state issues important to the profession.

Member and Chapter Services

  • On September 11, chapter leaders received the monthly Membership Minute, which provided tips on how chapters can engage their student members.  Chapter leaders also received their monthly chapter renewal reports.

  • On September 12, the Emerging Professionals Committee held an Ask Me Anything event, featuring Joy Kuebler, ASLA, which was streamlined live on the ASLA Facebook page and remains available for viewing.  So far, it has been viewed over 3,500 time.

  • Membership remains steady since 2015, yet the full membership category, which accounts for two-thirds of all members, continues to grow. While associate membership has dropped since last year, student membership is on the rise, up over two percent since last year and 13 percent since 2015.

Public Relations and Communications

  • PARK(ing) Day, Friday, September 15, was a big success, with more than 300 posters using the ASLA hashtag to make more than 800 posts. Check out some of the fun here.
  • press release went live announcing the convening of the ASLA Blue Ribbon Panel on Climate Change and Resilience. ASLA is working with PR agency Environics to promote the panel and its recommendations to the media. Early interest has come from Newsweek, Citylab, and CNN Español.

Education Programs

  • Accreditation and Education Programs Manager Kristopher Pritchard and Education Programs Director Susan Apollonio attended the Association of Specialized and Professional Accreditors (ASPA) Fall Conference in Arlington, VA, September 10-12. Manager Pritchard presented on the recent LAAB Accreditation Standards revision process, which was the main theme of the conference. Over 100 attendees representing 60 accreditors and other groups in the higher education community were present.
  • Manager Pritchard and LAAB Chair-Elect Ken Brooks, FASLA, FCELA, attended the CLARB Annual Conference in Boise, Idaho September 13-16. Manager Pritchard presented about data collected through the LAAB Annual Report that is shared with the Landscape Architecture President’s Council, while Chair-Elect Brooks participated on a panel discussion following the data session with other elected leaders of the President’s Council.
  • Today, Career Discovery and Diversity Manager Shawn Balon, ASLA, participated in the monthly conference call of the National Conference for Community Design Steering Committee. The working session included discussions on marketing, outreach, and logistics. Manager Balon will attend the monthly meetings to assist in guiding decisions and planning around maximizing the impact, rigor, and accessibility to the event. The national conference will convene in Baltimore in June 2018.
  • The Association of Architecture Organization’s (AAO) Design Matters Conference took place September 14-16 in Chicago. The conference is the world’s only dedicated annual meeting bringing top designers, journalists, and civic leaders into exploratory dialogue with those not-for-profit professionals and volunteers charged with creating cultural program. Manager Balon represented ASLA at the conference.
  • ASLA is creating activity books as a supplemental career discovery resource to Landscape Architecture Magazine's YOUR LAND. ASLA has launched a call for project proposals asking ASLA members to submit local sites. ASLA will choose up to five sites to be developed and designed at the Chapter President’s Council (CPC) fall meeting in Los Angeles. The design proposals and solutions will also be used in the development of the activity books. For more information, check out the 2017 ASLA Chapter Call for Project Proposals for the ASLA Activity Book.


Professional Practice

  • Manager Katie Riddle, ASLA, participated in the Creating Sustainable Water Systems Subcommittee planning call for the 17th Annual New Partners for Smart Growth Conference (NPSG). The subcommittee is developing education sessions focused on the One Water Concept. The new 2018 conference program, based on session tracks, will allow participants to go deeper into a topic, while continuing to connect back to broader placemaking efforts with a multidisciplinary group of partners tackling community challenges.
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Center Updates

Center Presents: Designers Who Happy Hour

It's everyone’s dream to go behind the scenes in this legendary Kansas City family-owned business. Third-generation owner René Bollier will talk about how design impacts his business from the delicious chocolates, pastries, and food, to the customer experience, to the new product packaging, to their newly renovated café and tea room spaces. Included will be a private tour of the production area where he will show guests how they make the J. Rieger & Co Whiskey chocolates.

Your ticket includes a flight of wine + savory small bites + chocolates paired with dessert wine. YUM!

$25 per person | 40 ppl max.
Register Here

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Please click here for the latest PGASLA News

LA’s In The News – PGASLA is looking for information regarding your activity in the community, especially if it is newsworthy.  Or perhaps you or your firm have been in the news!  Either way, please forward any information to the PGASLA president at  We will be happy to send news of your accomplishments to our media contacts.

ASLA Membership – ASLA National is offering a monthly installment option for payments of membership to ASLA.  When your membership renewal is due, and if you are interested in this option, please contact the national office to receive details.

Job Opportunities - Click here for current job postings.

PGASLA is on Facebook, LinkedIn, Twitter and Land8Lounge.  Please join us for local professional and event discussions.!/PGASLA

ASLA Store

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Volunteer Opportunities

We are always looking for volunteers to help with advocacy, public awareness, and events hosted by the chapter.  Volunteering is a fantastic opportunity for you to get involved with your peers and others in the community. Contact the chapter president at for more information on upcoming opportunities.

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Member Login

Within the PGASLA website there is a members only area where you can register for events, see the chapter roster and view past history of your attendance at events.  To log-in, each member will need to use their ASLA member number and a temporary password (eggplant).  Once logged in, members will need to change their password.  If you have any questions please contact

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