Professor Bob Grese named ASLA Fellow

Originally published: 
June, 2019

Professor Bob Grese was recognized by the American Society of Landscape Architects (ASLA) as an ASLA Fellow for his exceptional contribution to the landscape architecture profession and society at large. Nomination to the ASLA Council of Fellows is among the highest honor ASLA bestows. 

Professor Grese has been teaching and mentoring students in landscape architecture for 34 years. For the past nineteen years, he has served as director of the University of Michigan’s Nichols Arboretum, and has been director of the combined Matthaei Botanical Gardens and Nichols Arboretum since 2004. His research and teaching emphasize an interest in community, an appreciation of landscape heritage, the restoration of environmental integrity, and the building of connections between people and landscape. These themes are also emphasized in his leadership at Matthaei Botanical Gardens and Nichols Arboretum, transforming the properties for both university and community enjoyment. An advocate for ecological design, emphasizing regionally native flora, he has also researched themes in environmental stewardship, building a deeper understanding of the benefits gained from participating in volunteer stewardship programs and the motivations that keep volunteers engaged. His book Jens Jensen: Maker of Natural Parks and Gardens reawakened many to Jensen’s advocacy for a regional approach to landscape design.

During his long career of teaching at the U-M School for Environment and Sustainability, Professor Grease has taught well over a thousand students who are now found in leadership positions at professional firms, government agencies, and academia across the U.S. and around the world.