Jurors Press Release
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The Environmental Design Research Association
Assembles Esteemed Jurors for 19th Annual Great Places Awards

February 1, 2017 (St. Paul, MN) – The Environmental Design Research Association (EDRA) in partnership with the Project for Public Spaces has assembled a panel of eminent jurors with diverse backgrounds in design, research, teaching and practice to judge the 2017 Great Places Awards for Place Design, Place Planning Place Research, and Book Award.

The panel includes Mark Gillem, University of Oregon/Urban Collaborative; Brian Orland, University of Georgia; David Rubin, Land Collective; Randa Tukan, HOK; and Jay Walljasper, writer and storyteller. Highlighted below are three more esteemed jurors.


Professor Mark L. Gillem teaches architecture and urban design through a joint appointment in the Departments of Architecture and Landscape Architecture. He is the director of the PhD Program, the University of Oregon’s Urban Design Lab, and the International Association for the Study of Traditional Environments.

His teaching and research focus is on sustainable urbanism, which is an ecological approach to building that integrates architectural and landscape design with socio-cultural and environmental needs. In addition, he conducts post-occupancy evaluations of buildings and urban spaces using qualitative and quantitative methods. In the studio, he challenges students to balance theory and practice through the use of participatory methods in order to foster collaboration in the shaping of sustainable urban form.

He is the author of America Town: Building the Outposts of Empire (University of Minnesota Press, 2007), which received the Environmental Design Research Association (EDRA)/Places Journal/Metropolis Magazine Book Award in 2008. He is also the author or co-author of dozens of articles on sustainable urban design and numerous peer-reviewed book chapters.

He is a licensed architect, a certified planner, and a Fellow of the American Institute of Architects. He is also the Principal of The Urban Collaborative, an urban design firm that prepares plans and urban design policies for clients worldwide, to include the Master Plan for NASA’s Johnson Space Center. His professional work has received 15 national awards and numerous regional and local awards and he has been a featured speaker at hundreds of events around the world.


David A. Rubin is the founding principal of LAND COLLECTIVE, a landscape architecture and urban design studio committed to practicing with an emphasis on socially-purposeful design strategies. Educated at Connecticut College and Harvard University, he has taught and lectured at a number of institutions, including Harvard University’s Graduate School of Design, University of Pennsylvania School of Design, and Southern California Institute of Architecture.

David is the 2011-12 recipient of the Rome Prize in Landscape Architecture from the American Academy in Rome. His projects have received awards and honors from the American Institute of Architects and the American Society of Landscape Architects, among others.

David founded LAND COLLECTIVE to devote himself to crafting landscapes which affect positive social change through empathy-driven design. His current commissions include a 6-acre public park in downtown Westfield, Indiana, the new Cummins Distribution Headquarters in Indianapolis, Indiana, and the University of Pennsylvania’s new South Bank Innovation Campus in Philadelphia, Pennsylvania called Pennovation Works. He also recently completed a vision study with the Mayor of Baltimore for the Bromo Arts & Entertainment District, which will begin to be implemented in spring of 2016.

Rubin’s key built works include: the creation of a new campus and commons for Eskenazi Health Services Hospital, Indianapolis; the landscape at the California Memorial Stadium at the University of California in Berkeley, CA; the 3-star Sustainable Sites certified Canal Park, and the Potomac Park Levee on the National Mall, both in Washington, D.C.; and the design of Lenfest Plaza at The Pennsylvania Academy of the Fine Arts in Philadelphia, PA. His studio’s work includes diverse typologies in locations from Los Angeles to Rome, New York City, Washington, D.C., the Cayman Islands, Indianapolis, Saint Louis, and Philadelphia.


An award-winning writer, Jay Walljasper chronicles stories from around the world that point us toward a greener, more equitable and more enjoyable future. His focus goes beyond today’s headlines to discover the surprising real life going on all around us, and to highlight everyday people who are making a difference in the world

Jay is the author of The Great Neighborhood America’s Walking Renaissance; Book; All That We Share: A Field Guide to the Commons and the e-book How to Design the World for Happiness.

He is Urban-Writer in Residence at Augsburg College in Minneapolis and a Senior Fellow at Project for Public Spaces as well as a consultant on creating great communities and communications strategy. He was editor of Utne Reader magazine for 15 years, and a contributing editor of National Geographic Traveler.

Find out more at his website JayWalljasper.com

The Great Places Awards seek to recognize work that combines expertise in design, research and practice; and contributes to the creation of dynamic, humane places that engage our attention and imagination. Award-winning projects reflect an interdisciplinary approach that is enduring, human-centered, sustainable, and concerned with the experiential relationship between people and their environment (built and natural) over time.

It is not too late to submit for these awards. For more information, click here.


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