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Bracken Fellowship + Lectures

the basis of all art...

Each year the Department of Landscape Architecture sponsors the John R. Bracken Lecture Series and honors a distinguished individual as the John R. Bracken Fellow.

Bracken was a key part of the department’s rich history – he was among the first to graduate from Penn State with an undergraduate degree in landscape architecture and he served as department head from 1924 to 1957. Bracken continued to serve the department as an active professor emeritus until his death in 1979. The lecture series, which began in the spring of 1982, was made possible by a generous endowment from Bracken’s estate. These lectures, and the association with noted professionals through seminars and intimate discussions, have enriched the lives of our students.

Each year the John R. Bracken Fellow is honored with the presentation of a medal designed by John Cook, professor of art at Penn State. The face of the medallion depicts the corona of the mountain laurel and the reverse side portrays the Greek deity Daphne, under Apollo’s touch, transforming into a laurel tree. John Cook says, “This identification with an interaction between human qualities and nature is the basis of all art, especially so in the art of landscape architecture.”

John R. Bracken Fellowship medal from the Department of Landscape Architecture

Bracken Fellows

  • 2020-21 – Laurie Olin
  • 2019-20 – Jack Dangermond
  • 2018-19 –Marc Treib
  • 2017-18 – Ken Smith
  • 2016-17 – Richard Forman
  • 2015-16 – Timothy Beatley
  • 2014-15 – Michel Devignes
  • 2013-14 – Anne Spirn
  • 2012-13 – Anuradha Mathur
  • 2011-12 – Tom Leader
  • 2010-11 – Frederick Steiner
  • 2009-10 – Warren T. Byrd, Jr.
  • 2008-09 – Georges Descombes
  • 2007-08 – Michael Van Valkenburgh
  • 2006-07 – Mario Schjetnan
  • 2005-06 – David W. Orr, Ph.D.
  • 2004-05 – Edward D. Stone, Jr.
  • 2003-04 – Carol Franklin
  • 2002-03 – Peter Walker
  • 2001-02 – Martha Schwartz
  • 2000-01 – Yi Fu Tuan
  • 1999-2000 – Rachel Kaplan and Stephen Kaplan
  • 1998-99 – Randy Hester
  • 1997-98 – Jon Coe
  • 1996-97 – Carol Johnson
  • 1995-96 – Darrel Morrison
  • 1994-95 – Richard Haag
  • 1993-94 – William Johnson
  • 1992-93 – Peirce Lewis
  • 1991-92 – Sir Peter Shepheard
  • 1990-91 – J.B. Jackson
  • 1989-90 – Arthur E. Bye
  • 1988-89 – Grady Clay
  • 1987-88 – Stewart Udall
  • 1986-87 – William H. Whyte, Jr.
  • 1985-86 – Garrett Eckbo
  • 1984-85 – John Ormsbee Simonds
  • 1983-84 – Dame Sylvia Crowe
  • 1982-83 – Ian McHarg
  • 1981-82 – Sir Geoffrey Jellicoe

Bracken Lecturers

  • 2020-21 – Juanca Cristaldo and Local Office Landscape and Urban Design
  • 2019-20 – Sara Zewde
  • 2018-19 – Stefanie Loomis, Liat Margolis, Emily McCoy, Julian Raxworthy
  • 2017-18 – Susanna Drake, Gina Ford
  • 2016-17 – David Gouverneur, Shannon Nichol
  • 2015-16 – Johannes Böttger and Thomas Knüvener (joint lecture)
  • 2014-15 – Karen M’Closkey, Peter O’Shea
  • 2013-14 – Toru Mitani, Leonie Sandercock
  • 2012-13 – Thaisa Way
  • 2011-12 – Meg Calkins, Peter Del Tredici
  • 2010-11 – Achva Stein
  • 2009-10 – Herbert Dreiseitl, Tom Liptan
  • 2008-09 – Nina-Marie Lister, Julia Czerniak, Weiss/Manifredi, Setha Low, Kate Orff
  • 2007-08 – William Denevan, Keller Easterling, Margie Ruddick, D. Grahame Shane, Chris Reed
  • 2006-07 – Dean Bruton, Marc Treib, David Blier, George Hargreaves, Mark Johnson, James Wines
  • 2005-06 – Henry Arnold, Jim Diers
  • 2004-05 – Julie Bargmann, Donald Stastny
  • 2003-04 – Grant Jones
  • 2001-02 – Cheryl Barton
  • 2000-01 – James Urban
  • 1999-2000 – Walter Hood
  • 1998-99 – David Meyer, Michael Doyle
  • 1997-98 – Tim Palmer, Ann Mullins
  • 1996-97 – Donald Worster, Julie Moir Messervy
  • 1995-96 – Laurie Olin
  • 1994-95 – Winifred Lutz, Robert Newbury
  • 1993-94 – Lee Wintraub, Douglas Paterson, Joan Nassauer
  • 1992-93 – E. Michael Vergason, Robert Riley
  • 1991-92 – Catherine Howett, Joseph Passonneau
  • 1989-90 – Tony Guzzardo, Chester Rapkin, William Cronon
  • 1988-89 – Harley Jolley, Robert Ross Terence Harkness, George Hargreaves
  • 1987-88 – Lauren Ewing, Peirce Lewis, Carol Franklin, Leslie Sauer
  • 1986-87 – Carlton Abbott, John Collins
  • 1985-86 – Neil Porterfield, Martha Schwartz
  • 1984-85 – Wolf Van Eckardt, Henry Arnold, Ed Bye