Roxi Thoren

University of Oregon administrator named new Penn State Landscape Architecture head

Roxi Thoren, professor of architecture and landscape architecture and department head in landscape architecture at the University of Oregon, has been named head of the Penn State Department of Landscape Architecture, effective July 1.

Thoren said she is excited to join a department that is known for its design excellence, creativity and commitment to environmental and social good.

“I am looking forward to working with faculty, staff and students on the important challenges of climate change, social equity, and community and environmental health, areas where landscape architecture can play an innovative leadership role in society.”

Thoren, currently a Landscape Architecture Foundation (LAF) Senior Fellow for Innovation and Leadership, is an award-winning educator and scholar whose leadership experience spans undergraduate and graduate studies, faculty affairs, recruitment, student services, and equity and inclusion. She is the founder and director of the Fuller Center for Productive Landscapes at the University of Oregon, and served as the associate dean for academic affairs in the university’s College of Design from 2015 to 2018. She currently serves as the Council of Educators in Landscape Architecture (CELA) representative to the Landscape Architecture Accreditation Board.

College of Arts and Architecture Dean B. Stephen Carpenter II said Thoren’s background positions her to effectively lead the department.

“Her administrative experience coupled with her accomplishments as a scholar, designer and educator committed to social equity and community engagement make her well positioned to build on our strong reputation and to move the department forward.”

Patricia Kucker, director of the Stuckeman School of Architecture and Landscape Architecture, said she looks forward to welcoming Thoren to Penn State.

Roxi Thoren brings a rare combination of scholarship, leadership innovation and practice sensibilities, and is just the right kind of leader to carry the department into its future.”
-Patricia Kucker

Thoren’s teaching and scholarship studies the integration of productivity in landscape architectural design, including a series of research and design projects around agriculture, forestry and power. She is the co-author of “Farmscape: The Design of Productive Landscapes (Routledge, 2020) and author of “Landscapes of Change: Innovative Designs Reinventing Sites (Timber Press, 2014), which the American Society of Landscape Architects (ASLA) named one of the Top 10 Landscape Architecture Books of 2014.

Her recent honors include co-recipient of the Lord and Schryver Award from the ASLA Oregon chapter, for significant contributions to the achievement of women in landscape architecture, and an Excellence in Teaching Award from the Council of Educators in Landscape Architecture, among others.

Prior to joining the University of Oregon faculty in 2004, Thoren worked for design firm Wallace Roberts & Todd LLC in Philadelphia and Bruce Wardell Architects in Charlottesville, VA. She holds a Master of Landscape Architecture and Master of Architecture from the University of Virginia, and B.A. in Architecture from Wellesley College.