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Gary Kesler FASLA
Associate Professor
Portrait of Gary Kesler
Department of Landscape Architecture
332 Stuckeman
814.863.0972

Gary Kesler is an associate professor of landscape architecture, teaching courses in site design and stormwater management.  From 2008 to 2015, Kesler served as the associate dean for academic affairs and outreach in the College of Arts and Architecture. For twenty eight years prior to his arrival at Penn State, he was a member of the faculty at the University of Illinois-Urbana, where he also served in various administrative roles including BLA program coordinator,  associate head, interim department head, and director of the East St. Louis Action Research Project.

Kesler has been very active with the national ASLA, serving as the Illinois Chapter trustee, chair of the Council on Education, and vice president for education. Since 2011, he has been a member of the Landscape Architecture Accreditation Board and will serve as chair of the board in 2016.  He was selected as a member of the LAAB Roster of Visiting Evaluators in 2000 and chaired six re-accreditation reviews prior to joining the board. He is a registered landscape architect in Ohio and Illinois and a Fellow in the American Society of Landscape Architects and the Council of Educators in Landscape Architecture.

Education

  • Bachelor of Science in Landscape Architecture, 1976, Ohio State University (summa cum laude)
  • Master of Landscape Architecture, 1980, Harvard University

Courses Taught

  • Larch 212
  • Larch 222
  • Larch 431

Research

Kesler’s research interests focus on topics of sustainable approaches to stormwater management and the history of the profession. Recent publications include, Cultivating Breadth, 100 Years of Landscape Architecture at the University Illinois, published by the department for its centennial celebration in October of 2008, and "Florence Bell Robinson," in Shaping the American Landscape, edited by Birnbaum and Foell, 2009.

Honors + Awards

  • Award of Distinction, Council of Educators in Landscape Architecture (1987)
  • Fellow, American Society of Landscape Architects (1998)
  • “Professor of the Year”, Beta Alpha Chapter of Alpha Phi, University of Illinois (2001)
  • Outstanding Faculty Award for Service, College of Fine and Applied Arts (2003)
  • Recognition for Dedicated Service, American Society of Landscape Architects (2003)
  • ASLA President’s Medal for “sustained, unselfish, and dedicated service to the ASLA for over 30 years” (2007)
  • Public Recognition Award, American Society of Landscape Architecture, Illinois Chapter (2008)
  • Fellow, Council of Educators in Landscape Architecture (2015)

Service

  • Chair, ASLA Council on Education 2004-05
  • Vice President for Education, ASLA 2005-07
  • Chair of Visiting Team, MLA Re-accreditation, Florida International University (2001)
  • Chair of Visiting Team, MLA Re-accreditation, University of Georgia (2006)
  • Chair of Visiting Team, MLA Re-accreditation, University of Virginia (2007)
  • Member, ASLA Archives and Collection Committee (2008-2015)
  • ASLA Representative Member, National Academy for Environmental Design (2008-09)
  • Chair of Visiting Team, MLA Re-accreditation, Morgan State University (2009)
  • Member, ASLA Honors and Awards Committee (2009-2015)
  • Chair of Visiting Team, BSLA Re-accreditation, Cornell University (2010)
  • Chair of Visiting Team, BLA Re-accreditation, Mississippi State University (2011)
  • Member, Landscape Architecture Accreditation Board (2011-p)
  • Chair-Elect, Landscape Architecture Accreditation Board (2015)