Leadership | LAF Medal and Founders' Award

2018 LAF Medal Recipient: Carol Franklin

“I find ‘ecological design’ a more satisfying description of our work than ‘sustainable design.’ Ecological design suggests a richer and more complex achievement—where designers will work from a deep understanding of how the world is actually put together. These designs—for buildings, landscapes, cities and regions—will, I hope, be timeless, beautiful, and functional.
                      — Carol Franklin, FASLA, PLA

“Carol Franklin exemplifies career-long passion and leadership in promoting ecological awareness and sustainability. In addition to her award-winning work as a founding member of Andropogon, she taught at PennDesign for over 30 years, seeding the next generation with those values.”
               — Awards Committee Chair Dennis Carmichael, FASLA


Carol Franklin, FASLA, PLA is a pioneering landscape architect, who has been at the forefront of ecological and sustainable landscape design since 1975. A founding principal of Andropogon Associates, Ltd., she is a nationally recognized expert in ecological design. Carol’s work exemplifies her lifelong interest in restoring both natural and cultural landscapes and in re-establishing the essential connection between the two.

For more than three decades, she has worked to develop sustainable institutions, parks, and communities, generating solutions that integrate historical, cultural, economic, and environmental concerns. Her notable works include the Stapleton Airport Redevelopment Master Plan in Denver, restoration plans for Central Park’s North Meadow and Woods in New York City, the landscape master plan for the Fallingwater National Historic Landmark in Pennsylvania, the master plan for Louisville’s Olmsted Parks and Pathways in Kentucky, and the master plan and restorations at the University of Pennsylvania’s Morris Arboretum.

Since the beginning of her career, Carol has dedicated significant time and energy to education and public service. From 1972 to 2002, Carol was an adjunct professor in the University of Pennsylvania’s Department of Landscape Architecture and Regional Planning. From 2002 to 2005, she taught cultural landscapes in the Department of Historic Preservation and served as a guest studio master in the Department of Landscape Architecture. She has served on the boards of various local and nonprofit organizations dedicated to conservation.

Carol has written and lectured widely on ecological design and planning. Her essays have been featured in Nature and Cities: The Ecological Imperative in Urban Design and Planning (Lincoln Institute of Land Policy, 2016), Principles of Ecological Landscape Design, (Island Press, 2013), and Ecological Design and Planning (John Wiley & Sons, Inc, 1997).