QLD Executive Committee 2021-23


AILA QLD is delighted to welcome the newly appointed members of its State Chapter Executive from 2021 - 2023. Serving a two-year term, the new Executive members bring to the table a diverse range of experience and connections to well represent and advocate on behalf of our chapter members and the profession. The new Executive (from L - R in the photo) Lisa Mercer, Tessa Leggo, David Uhlmann, Cass Gaisford, David Roberts, Esperanza Kelly, Glen Power. Thank you again to Jamie Franklin and Alex Woodward who have stepped down from the Executive.

Message from David Uhlmann, QLD President (transitioning to Vice-President)
Our new AILA Queensland State Executive is now in place for the next two years.  Having completed two terms as State Chapter President it is my turn to handover the President reins to Tessa Leggo, who I know will do a fantastic job, starting in September.  Thank you to the incoming State Executive for endorsing me to continue in the Vice President role, with a focus on a continuation of AILA Queensland’s government advocacy around licencing and registration and to continue to promote green infrastructure funding for State Government and Local Council projects.  I look forward to continuing to advocate for Landscape Architecture and the vital role of Landscape Architects, and to elevate the importance of Design with our decision makers in government.

Message from Tessa Leggo, QLD Vice-President (transitioning to President)

Hi everyone! It is my absolute pleasure and honour to become our next State Chapter President.  Come September, I’ll be swapping from the Vice-President’s role to the President’s role – somehow having to fill some big shoes left by David Uhlmann.  Let me be the first to thank David for the amazing job that he has done over the last few years!  Without his unwavering tenacity with our licensing issues, I’m sure we wouldn’t have gained as much traction & audience with government.  And it is wonderful to know that he’ll be continuing with this advocacy.  I hope to continue David’s work to promote AILA and the role of landscape architecture within our society.  I’m delighted to be able to take on a leadership role, making sure AILA is delivering on our strategic pillars and supporting our profession.  Personally, I think this is a truly exciting time for Landscape Architects in Queensland.   With the news of Brisbane Olympics 2032, we’ll see interest and investment in public facilities and tourism offerings across the state.  Also, a little closer to home, continued lockdowns are still highlighting the need for quality open space.  Our voices are getting louder and I’m proud to be one of them.

2019 -21 QLD Executive - Outgoing Committee

Thank you to our 2019 -21 Committee and previous Vice-President Jamie Franklin and Executive member Alex Woodward who have stepped down from the Committee.


David Uhlmann, President (transitioning to Vice-President end of September)

David is an AILA Registered Landscape Architect and Urban Designer with over 28 years experience. David has practiced predominantly in Queensland and New South Wales and has extensive experience in large and small scale landscape design, urban design, and master planning projects. He has a strong background in precinct sustainability, having been a Green Star accredited professional since 2004. He has provided sustainability advise to a variety of projects from individual buildings through to residential estates, and he is retained as a technical expert for Green Star Communities by the Green Building Council of Australia.  David is co-founder of YIMBY Queensland, a non-for-profit organisation dedicated to promoting good development outcomes. 

Tessa Leggo, Vice-President (transitioning to President end of September)

Tessa is the owner of FRED St, a Brisbane based Landscape Architectural firm with extensive experience in landscape and urban design for commercial, infrastructure, parks and open spaces. Tessa Leggo is a standing member of the QLD Chapter Executive and an active AILA member. Always advocating for landscape architecture, with a passion for integrated solutions that maximise environmental and community outcomes. She takes every opportunity to further the reach of the landscape architecture profession and the benefits they can provide future generations.

Esperanza Kelly, Secretary

In 2005, I assisted in the launch of Form Landscape Architects. I ran the day to day operations of the studio whilst acting as project manager for Mossvale on Manly development among other projects. I have a strong portfolio of built projects throughout the world. I have 35 years of experience as a lead designer and project manager, specialising in all types of projects ranging from schools, parks, transportation, commercial, residential developments and high rise residential. I am a registered landscape architect in Florida as well as AILA.   My love for traveling has given me the opportunity to work in Australia and Abu Dhabi, both places with environmental challenges. In the mist of climate change this experience influenced my approach to design in South Florida which has its own unique environmental challenges. I returned to Form after 14 years to run the Studio. My passion for the industry and ability to bring people together and work for the common good make me a great candidate for an executive position for AILA Queensland. A position I held back in 2005-2006. 

Cass Gaisford

I have 20 years of experience as a landscape architect and project manager, having worked on a range of projects focused primarily on public parklands, sport and nature-based recreation and environmental rehabilitation of degraded land sites and waterways. Graduating Masters’ Degree in Landscape Architecture; Bachelor of Architectural Studies and a Diploma in Conservation and Land Management, I have been fortunate to have worked in both the public and private sector working with clients, communities and stakeholders in designing and delivering projects that transform landscapes into quality public spaces and outdoor recreation opportunities for people to use, value and enjoy whilst enhancing natural function and systems.

David Roberts

Every year AILA Queensland's influence grows, and together we are becoming a stronger membership that are influencing a wide range of groups, organizations, and governments across the State. After being part of the Queensland Executive for the last few years, I have found it to be a rewarding and enjoyable experience. I am pleased to be given the opportunity to participate again and contribute. Advocating to government is a crucial part of our profession and significantly influences policy making decisions which directly impact the communities in which we live and work. As AILA members, we have substantial influence that we should use at every available opportunity.

Glen Power

I have been practicing landscape architecture in Brisbane and throughout Queensland since completion of my undergraduate degree from QUT at the end of 2001. Having worked initially for EDAW for three years and then RPS (previously C+B Group, Vivo Design, and Conics) for eleven years, I commenced a Director role with Urbis in 2015. Throughout the past few years at RPS and during my time at Urbis, I have been providing a leadership role mentoring and training young landscape architect graduates. In addition to these internal company roles, I have also engaged with both QUT and AILA in several capacities including mentoring 4th year architecture students, critiquing 1st and 2nd year landscape architecture students, and being on the judging panel for the Karl Langer Award in 2020. The last few years of mentoring within our industry has provided me with an avenue to express and transfer my own passion and knowledge of landscape architecture to the next generation. I see fulfilling a role on the AILA State Executive not only as an opportunity to give back to the industry that has given me so much, but to also focus on my particular interest in the early education of students and graduates as they enter university or practice. 

Lisa Mercer

With experience and passion for the diversity of Landscape Architecture as a discipline, I believe that I am well positioned to represent our membership and interest of AILA as an organisation. I am an active AILA Gold Regional Sub-committee representative in addition to my role on the AILA QLD Chapter Executive. I hold formal qualifications in Landscape Architecture, Horticulture, and Higher Education Teaching with a keen interest in contributing to built outcomes that prioritise context and their broader environmental contribution. I will continue to strive for a legacy supporting greater understanding of the important and relevance of our profession, including our capacity for effecting positive change for long term community and environmental benefit.