WA News & Media

AILA WA's Newest Fellow - Peta-Maree Ashford, Director and Principal Landscape Architect, Emerge Associates

Peta-Maree Ashford has been presented with a Fellowship of Australian Institute of Landscape Architecture for her distinguished service to the profession of landscape architecture at the state level.

Peta-Maree has been working as a Landscape Architect for the past 18 years. She is a Director and Principal Landscape Architect at Emerge Associates in Perth, Western Australia and one of a few females to have held a Director position within a landscape architectural firm within Western Australia.

Peta-Maree has worked extensively in Western Australia, with a wide range of experience in master planning and project management of small to large scale landscape architectural projects. Her work has extended beyond metropolitan areas and between 2008-2012, Peta-Maree led the regional office of Emerge Associates based in Busselton, South-West Western Australia.

Peta-Maree has a particular passion for play spaces and revitalisation projects and has had the opportunity to put her passion to practice with projects such as the Busselton Foreshore Upgrade, Morawa Town Centre Revitalisation, Capel Civil Precinct and the Bunbury Accessible Playground. Her passion, innovation and attention to detail, combined with her understanding of the technical aspects and practicalities of landscape construction, has culminated in the successful design and subsequent implementation of numerous urban, regional and greenfield projects in Western Australia.

Peta-Maree has also played an instrumental role in mentoring graduate landscape architects and junior staff to facilitate their growth within the industry. Peta-Maree’s leadership style is to draw on the strengths of those around her, seek differing opinions, listening and using what she hears as a basis for facilitating positive change. She believes that empowering others to speak is a great business enabler.

With a staff ratio of 45% males to 55% females, Peta-Maree has been directly able to ensure gender equity within her own organisation during the review of roles, salaries, career opportunities and career development. Practical merit based gender equity is close to Peta-Maree’s heart, as is encouraging and enabling women to return to gainful employment following maternity leave.

Peta-Maree has strategically built her leadership qualities throughout her career. Peta-Maree is an engaged member of AILA with specific focus on mentoring new graduates. Between 2004-2008 she was a UWA Student Mentor Co-ordinator and a past member of the UDIA young professionals Outlook Committee (2003-2004). Since 2014 Peta-Maree has led Emerge’s involvement in the ‘7 Senses Street Day’ an initiative developed by landscape architect Tobias Volbert and Linda Cuppit to create healthier and happier neighbourhoods and communities that include people of all abilities and wellness, through activity and play.

In 2014 Peta-Maree was a member of the AILA National Awards Review Committee and a jury member for the AILA WA Chapter Awards. In 2016, Peta-Maree was nominated as a finalist in the inaugural UDIA WA and Frasers Property Group Women in Leadership Award.



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