National Presidents Message - 29 August 2016

Hello, and thank you members!


Friends and Colleagues,

I had the absolute pleasure of attending our 50th party last week at the Brickworks studio in Adelaide’s Hindmarsh Square. It was a rousing, fantastic celebration, and to be held simultaneously around Australia was amazing!

The short film produced by Margaret McHugh was inspiring, and to see some of Australia’s great Landscape Architects being truly authentic about AILA and their journey were a real highlight of the evening. More on the film in a moment…

The other highlight for me personally was the time given to our AILA Fellows. Fellow Barrie Ornsby provided a comprehensive overview of his career, as well as reinforcing the importance of a member driven and professionally led AILA – as South Australia’s first local government landscape architect – and this was followed by heartfelt and passionate sentiments from AILA Fellows James Hayter, Graeme Hopkins, Paul Harding and Hillary Hamnet, as well from new Fellows Heath Edwards and Kate Cullity.

Just prior to the open microphone for our esteemed fellows, and in a nice touch, we presented our newly minted Registered Landscape Architects with their certificates….the circle of life and all that!

The night was a proud moment for all landscape architects across Australia, and as is the way these days, our social media channels were going ‘nuts’, with a happy birthday tweet or two from around the world.

We had over 500 members and guests join around Australia and in an AILA first as well. I would like to sincerely thank our partners Lappset, Austral Masonry and Austral Bricks for supporting the AILA 50th birthday parties but most importantly all the AILA staff, the State Chapters and volunteers who made it happen.

Margaret’s film looked into the window of AILA’s past, and through the contribution of members, has demonstrated how AILA has over the last 50 years supported, helped legitimise and strengthen the profession of landscape architecture in Australia and further afield. The film highlights some great achievements over the decades, from the beginnings in 1966 through to present day. Creative guidance for the film was provided by Helen Armstrong AM FAILA and generous support for the film’s production was provided by McGregor Coxall, HASSELL, T.C.L., Tract Consultants and ASPECT Studios. The film features interviews with several of AILA’s foundation members as well. You can view the film here and if you were one of the few not to be at one of the parties, I strongly ask that you watch it, consider it and share it!

It was a night to feel good about being a landscape architect. Mission accomplished!

All eligible members will soon receive information on the upcoming elections for a new AILA Board, as a result of the constitutional change being approved by members in July. I look forward to contacting you about that later this week. Watch you inboxes earnestly! As was evident last week at our 50th party celebrations, much of what we do would not be possible without the ongoing financial support of all our partners, and I would like to expressly thank the following national corporate partners:

We are incredibly grateful for the support we receive. I trust as members that you have seen how our corporate partners are allowing AILA to undertake things not previously possible. We should also appreciate that due to the reform undertaken by the current and previous Board, by widening the corporate partner model, has resulted in significantly increased funding of the State Chapters, and overall a doubling of AILA staff resources. This allows AILA to do more and have a stronger voice locally and nationally.

It was a special week last week. Now we look forward earnestly to the Festival of Landscape Architecture, and our next 50 years. Happy birthday, AILA!!

As always, please drop me a line if I can be of assistance or advice, or contact the National Office. I always appreciate feedback and contact, and please continue to tweet and FB your views to @AILA_National and @DJB_LA.

Have a good week!

Daniel Bennett

Registered Landscape Architect

National President

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