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Now Is a Great Time to Get Involved . . .

By George Schmok

Hey there . . . It's been a couple of months since I last wrote a column, so there is a little catching up to do . . .

Hopefully, by now you all have received your 410 page Specifier's Guide and have it close by as a reference. That annual issue has become quite a project for LASN and we are always looking for ways to make it better, so if you have any suggestions on how we can improve its usefulness, please be sure to let us know. We are already in the planning stages for the 2005 edition . . .

On a sad note . . . The last two months have seen the loss of two landscape architects that were dear to LASN as well as many of you. With the passing of Bill Swain, we have all lost a great leader and friend. Bill's work as a volunteer for the society and as a mentor to many provided yet another cornerstone in the growth of this great profession. Bill would often write LASN with suggestions on how we could improve the publication (the letters were sometimes very lengthy, especially in the early years :-) and had a huge influence on the make-up of the publication. Bill, of course, will be missed tremendously.

We also lost Dan Franklin, one of the most colorful and outspoken personalities I have ever met, not only in the profession but really . . . anywhere . . . I always looked forward to seeing Dan at ASLA's annual meeting and usually walked away shocked, infuriated, invigorated, motivated . . . one could never just walk away from Dan without feeling some kind of emotion. But whatever that emotion was, I always walked away with a smile knowing that I'd just spent time with a man who knew who he was and had a clear vision for his passion, which was his work with the land . . .

Now is also the time to talk about the political landscape as the battle for the White House and the direction of the country unfolds in the months ahead. Landscape architects, on your own and through the ASLA, are continuing to increase your presence in the political arena.

Additionally, landscape architects and land planners are having more and more impact and influence on the daily lives of the populous. As such, your input and participation is sorely needed in guiding the various governing factions in a direction that promotes responsible development across the nation . . .

Many important issues will be debated and decided upon in the national, state and local arenas over the next several years.

At the national level, the highway bills, infrastructure rebuilding and national parks will all be topics of concern to landscape architects in the years ahead.

Licensure and school development will be hot topics at the state levels. Meanwhile, local governments will be trying to protect the citizenry with landscape ordinances and regulations.

Now is a great time to get involved . . . As always, LASN is interested in what you are doing, so please let us know if you are participating in an active way in shaping this country . . . we'd love to hear (and report) your story . . .

In the mean time have a great summer and, as always . . . God Bless!

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December 8, 2019, 7:41 am PDT

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