Rhodeside & Harwell, an award-winning landscape architecture and planning practice headquartered in the Washington, D.C., area, has promoted three of the firm’s senior staff.
Kurt Parker, ASLA, an associate principal and landscape architect, has been promoted to shareholder with the firm. Parker joined Rhodeside & Harwell in 1994 and has overseen major projects for the firm including the LEED®-Gold Alexandria, Virginia, Police headquarters, the renovation and expansion of the South African Embassy in Washington, D.C., and numerous U.S. embassy projects around the world. Parker is currently managing the landscape design for the new Health and Engineering Building at James Madison University, renovations to the Japanese Pavilion at the U.S. National Arboretum, and site and landscape development for new U.S. embassy campuses in North and West Central Africa, the Balkans, and the Southwestern Pacific Region.
Parker holds a Bachelor of Landscape Architecture and a minor in Horticulture from Iowa State University. He is a member of the American Society of Landscape Architects and the National Association for Olmsted Parks.
Thomas Rainer has been named an associate principal. A landscape architect with 12 years of experience, Rainer has led the landscape design for many major projects for the firm, including the James Madison University College of Integrated Science and Technology; streetscape design for the Connecticut Avenue median in Washington, D.C.; restoration of the landscape at the historic Liberia House in Manassas, Va.; and the Summerhouse restoration on the grounds of the U.S. Capitol. Rainer is currently overseeing development of the master plan for the Journey Through Hallowed Ground Living Legacy project from Gettysburg to Charlottesville and landscape architecture for a new apartment building in Bethesda for the Lenkin Company.
Rainer holds a Master of Landscape Architecture from the University of Georgia and a Bachelor of Arts from Birmingham-Southern College. He is a blogger and frequent speaker on the subject of sustainable garden design.
Meredith Judy, a planner with 13 years of experience, also has been named an associate principal. Judy has managed several major transportation planning initiatives for Rhodeside & Harwell, including the award-winning Urban Development Areas (UDAs) technical assistance program for the Virginia Department of Transportation. Currently Judy is overseeing planning and community outreach for the Route 1 Multimodal Alternatives Analysis for the Virginia Department of Rail & Public Transportation; planning for the Rosslyn Sector Plan update, known as “Realize Rosslyn”; and the Central West Focus Area planning study near the planned expansion of the University of North Carolina Chapel Hill campus.
Judy holds a Master’s degree in City Planning from the Massachusetts Institute of Technology and a Bachelor’s degree in Environmental Analysis from Davidson College. She is Treasurer for the D.C. Chapter of Women’s Transportation Seminar, on the Technical Advisory Committee for the Northern Virginia Transportation Authority, and a member of the American Planning Association.
Eliza Pennypacker, ASLA, professor of landscape architecture, has been appointed Head of the Department of Landscape Architecture at Penn State. Since January 2014, she has served as Interim Department Head. Pennypacker has taught in the Department of Landscape Architecture at Penn State since 1982 and served as interim Associate Dean for Research (1987), Associate Director of Penn State's Institute for Arts and Humanities (1989–91), Head of the Department of Landscape Architecture (1993–2000), and Director of Campus Planning and Design for Penn State (2000–2001).
Pennypacker received her bachelor of arts in philosophy from St. John's College (MD) and her master of landscape architecture from The University of Virginia. One of her areas of research is in design pedagogy with a focus on strategies that encourage students to sequentially develop awareness, understanding, and ability in design, and independent design decision-making strategies.
Another of Pennypacker’s research passions is Artful Rainwater Design (ARD), a term coined by her and colleague Stuart Echols. ARD addresses best management practices for stormwater, treats rainwater as a resource rather than a waste product, and transforms stormwater management systems into amenities through design that celebrates the rain. She and Echols are currently working on a book about ARD with Island Press in Washington, D.C., which is due out in early 2015.
“The thing that excites me most about ARD is that this opens an extremely important opportunity for landscape architects. Engineers can do green infrastructure; but only landscape architects not only solve the sustainable stormwater management problem but also make places where people can experience the beauty and benefits of rain,” said Pennypacker.
Her interest in ARD is grounded in her belief that environmentally responsible landscape design must be valued as an amenity in order to be sustainable. “The amenity aspect is so important; but, with ARD, it goes beyond mere beauty. It’s about activating a place in a way that lets people understand and celebrate rain,” she continued.
Among other accomplishments, Pennypacker designed, built, and ran an environmentally focused woodland miniature golf course in Gainesville, Georgia, which won a Georgia chapter ASLA design award in 2004 for its ecological sensitivity. She also designed and curated an award winning, traveling, interpretive exhibition and catalog, Abstracting the Landscape: the Artistry of Landscape Architect A. E. Bye, in collaboration with Kristi Wormhoudt, affiliate assistant professor of art history at Penn State, and collaborated with Penn State faculty members, the late Veronica Burns Lucas (landscape architecture), John Lucas, and Don Leon (architecture) to win the national design competition for the Korean War Veterans Memorial in Washington, D.C.
As Stuckeman Chair of Interdisciplinary Design in 2013, Pennypacker hosted a symposium on Artful Rainwater Design. To see all the presentations, which were posted to YouTube, visit http://www.youtube.com/user/StuckemanSchool.