AILA Governance

The Australian Institute of Landscape Architects Inc (AILA) is a not-for-profit professional institute formed to serve the mutual interests of its members and the wider profession throughout Australia. AILA is a company limited by guarantee (ACN 008 531 851) and is governed by a Board of 5 elected members.

AILA National Board

The governance structure of AILA is vested in the AILA Board, which retains ultimate legal responsibility for the whole organisation and provides leadership by setting the strategic agenda, budgets, policies and performance targets.

As well as the Board, AILA has eight state or territory chapters. Each chapter has an executive committee appointed to lead the profession locally, and its members within the state. This committee is not part of the Board, but works collaboratively with the Board whilst representing their state or territory.

Within the AILA structure, all state or territory chapters and local or national committees are sub committees of the Board. The Board carries the responsibility for the actions of any of the chapters, their committees, panels or individuals taking on AILA representative roles.

While AILA’s National President is responsible for the integrity of the governance process and the functioning of the Board, AILA's CEO is responsible, through being devolved the powers from the Board, for the management and operations of the Institute. Read AILA's Board Minutes.

Claire Martin FAILA - National President

Claire Martin is a Registered Landscape Architect with experience in the UK and Australia. She is the Associate Director of the Melbourne studio of OCULUS, where she has led the successful delivery of a range of education, health, cultural, infrastructure and public landscape projects. Claire is a member of the Office of the Victorian Government Architect’s Victorian Design Review Panel and a contributing editor of Landscape Architecture Australia. She is a regular guest lecturer at the Schools of Architecture & Design at the University of Melbourne and RMIT University where she has taught, is an invited critic, and a member of the Landscape Architecture Program Advisory Committee. She was a Co-Creative Director of This Public Life, the Australian Institute of Landscape Architecture’s Festival of Landscape Architecture, which brought together thinkers and practitioners from the arts and sciences; and the recipient of the Australian Institute of Landscape Architects’ Jim Sinatra National Future Leaders Award.

Peta-Maree Ashford FAILA - Vice-President

Peta-Maree is a Director, Owner and Principal Landscape Architect of Emerge Associates, a private practice in WA. After building and managing the Emerge South West regional office over a 5 year period, she returned to the Perth office in 2012 to take up her current role which extends to Manager of Landscape and Shared Services teams, as well as actively maintaining and overseeing the company’s financial stability.

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 WA.

Peta-Maree strategically built her leadership qualities throughout her career including serving on committees of aligned industries and advocating for Landscape Architectural influence in government and private forums. Her leadership style is to draw on the strengths of those around her, seek differing opinions, listening and using what she hears facilitate positive change. She believes that empowering others to speak is a great business enabler.

Peta-Maree was shortlisted for the Inaugural UDIA Women in Leadership Award and her professional focus saw her acknowledged with an AILA Fellowship. She believes her culminated professional, regional, committee and practice experience provide a strong foundation for her role as Director of the AILA board.

Chris Tidswell AILA - Secretary

Chris Tidswell is one of the leaders at Arcadia Landscape Architecture. He provides extensive experience, knowledge creating place and understanding in Arcadia’s projects both in New South Wales and Nationally.

Chris has gained professional experience in both the private and public sectors over the past 12 years, delivering a market leading approach to Urban Design and Landscape Architecture. He has Landscape and Architectural Masters Qualifications that are accompanied by a Project Management Diploma.

Chris has activity been an AILA Graduate Member before being an AILA Registered Member since 2013. During this time, he has been fortunate to have worked for a number AILA fellows, past and present nation and state presidents. This has enriched his passion for being the best advocate for AILA as he possibly can be.

Chris demonstrates strong skills, expertise and an understanding of the profession that will ensure a valuable contribution to the progression of the 4 key objectives of AILA 2018-2022 Strategy.

Chris will act honourably and provide trust, conveying honesty and good faith to the best of his ability always in the interests of AILA – he will voice strategy and provide leadership to help shape AILA and the profession! 

Katharina Nieberler-Walker FAILA

Katharina is a Principal with Conrad Gargett a multidisciplinary design practice in Australia. Katharina was born and educated in Germany, earning tertiary qualifications in landscape architecture. She has travelled extensively, inspired by other cultures and the beauty of the diverse living ecosystems of the natural world. A dedicated proponent of sustainable design, Katharina is committed to using design as a means to tackle complex 21 century challenges. Head of Conrad Gargett’s landscape studio, she is passionate about developing integrated, people-oriented places, and interweaving natural and built elements to create a sense of place connected to community.

Katharina feels privileged to have been elected to the national Australian Institute of Landscape Architects’ Board. She looks forward working with the other board members to serve the members and the profession of landscape architecture over the next two years. Katharina will listen, learn and engage with AILA priorities, drawing on 30 years of experience as a landscape architect in government and private enterprise. She believes it is essential to engage with other professions and universities to build capacity for holistic and evidence-based design solutions that span multiple disciplines. Her passion is designing with nature to improve health and wellbeing, while also benefiting the planet.

Jasmine Ong AILA

Jasmine Ong is a Registered Landscape Architect with experience in the UK, China and Australia in both government and private sectors. She is a Design Advisor and Senior Associate at Spiire, Melbourne, where she drives the vision, strategy and brand of the landscape studio. She is highly regarded in the industry after having worked in London as Director of Martha Schwartz Partners where she was responsible for numerous award winning projects and for setting up the Shanghai studio. With over 17 years’ experience as a landscape architect, Jasmine has led a plethora of projects globally with world-renowned architects. She is passionate about environmental sustainability, artful landscapes and place making. Her work spans from small scale spaces to large, complex and strategic landscape planning which focuses on the creation of valuable public spaces with identity and a sense of place.

Contact the AILA National Board via the National Office.