Class Notes

Class Notes

Dr. Robert Corry (PhD ’02) was presented the Triad Award from the Council of Educators in Landscape Architecture (CELA) at its annual conference in March. This is the first time the award has been given, which recognized Corry's "extended contributions and service to CELA above and beyond the call of duty to advance the mission of the CELA through scholarly and creative endeavors."

Benjamin Cuker (BS ’76, MS ’78) published a new book, Diet for a Sustainable Ecosystem: The Science for Recovering the Health of the Chesapeake Bay and its People, as part of Springer’s Estuaries of the World series. 

Lisa DuRussel (BS ’02, MLA ’06), an assistant professor of practice in landscape architecture, is one of 17 University of Michigan faculty members who were named 2021 Public Engagement Faculty Fellows. She will spend the summer reflecting, building skills, and planning projects with public engagement experts across campus. 

Jerry Gidner (MS 90) was appointed to the board of directors of the Tourette Association of America, the only national nonprofit organization serving the Tourette Syndrome and Tic Disorder community. A citizen of the Sault Ste. Marie Chippewa Tribe, he serves as the Director of the Bureau of Trust Funds Administration in the U.S. Department of the Interior.

Arman Golrokhian (MS/MPP ’17), a member of the SEAS Alumni Leadership Council, is now an energy consultant at PA Consulting in Denver. He previously was a senior strategist–renewable energy at DTE Energy in Detroit.

Lauren Highleyman (MS ’17) authored a new book, Making Shift Happen: Designing for Successful Environmental Behavior Change (New Society Publishers, June 2021). She is the assistant director of The Root Solutions in San Francisco, where she oversees behavior change projects across a range of issues, including transportation demand management, paper reduction, and marine debris prevention.

Chet Hill (MLA ’89) and Chuyi Yin (MLA/MS ’20) were recognized with awards from the Michigan Chapter of the American Society of Landscape Architects (ASLA). Hill was recognized as a Michigan ASLA distinguished member. He is a principal at Johnson Hill Land Ethics Studio in Ann Arbor and a longtime lecturer at SEAS. Yin won the Student Honor Award for her SEAS project, “Pebbles Along the Creek: Restoration and Design for Saginaw Forest Eco-Lab,” which focused on transforming Saginaw Forest, a SEAS property, into an eco-lab for education, research, and outreach. She is a landscape designer at Coen+Partners in Minneapolis.

BinBin Li (MS ’12), a writer and nature photographer, was an honoree in the inaugural Explorers Club 50 program, which recognized 50 explorers who are changing the world. An assistant professor at Duke Kunshan University in Kunshan, Jiangsu, China, she focuses on protected areas and endangered and endemic species conservation. Her studies include giant panda habitat and understanding the impacts of oil palm and rubber plantations on biodiversity in Southeast Asia. She also empowers young women to participate in scientific research and conservation work, and she is actively engaged in science communication and nature education. 

Kathleen Mogelgaard (MS/MPP ’04) has been appointed president and CEO of the Population Institute, an international nonprofit organization that educates policymakers and the public about population. She previously was a senior fellow at the Institute.

Laura Rubin (MS ’95, MBA ’95) was appointed by Michigan Gov. Gretchen Whitmer to the Great Lakes Protection Fund Board of Directors in October 2020. The Great Lakes Protection Fund is a private, nonprofit corporation formed in 1989 by the Governors of the Great Lakes States. It is a permanent environmental endowment that supports collaborative actions to improve the health of the Great Lakes ecosystem. Rubin is the director of the Healing Our Waters-Great Lakes Coalition at the National Wildlife Federation in Ann Arbor.

Esther Salata (MS ’15) is the owner/founder of Benesafe Solutions LLC, which manufactures, produces, and sells eco-friendly, plant-based insect repellents.

Miguel Sossa (MS/MBA ’13) is now vice president of the western region at Natural Capital Partners in Portland, Oregon. He previously was a sustainability advisor at Delta Air Lines.

Sara Steenbergh (MLA/MS ’21) was named a 2021 Landscape Architecture Foundation (LAF) Olmsted Scholar. The LAF Olmsted Scholars Program recognizes and supports students with exceptional leadership potential who are using ideas, influence, communication, service, and leadership to advance sustainable design and foster human and societal benefits.

Teona Williams (MS ’17) authored the paper, For ‘Peace, Quiet, and Respect’: Race, Policing, and Land Grabbing on Chicago’s South Side,” which was published in December 2020 in Antipode: A Radical Journal of Geography. She is a doctoral student at Yale University.

Katie Williamson (MS ’18) a senior associate at the Center for Behavior & the Environment at Rare in Washington, D.C., co-authored The Science of Changing Behavior for Environmental Outcomes: A Literature Review.