Harvard Graduate School of Design announces Gary R. Hilderbrand (MLA ’85) as new chair of the Department of Landscape Architecture, effective July 1, 2022. Hilderbrand is the Peter Louis Hornbeck Professor-in-Practice at the GSD, where he has taught since 1990, and Founding Principal and Partner of Reed Hilderbrand.
Hilderbrand succeeds Anita Berrizbeitia (MLA ’87), Professor of Landscape Architecture, who joined Harvard GSD as a Design Critic in Landscape Architecture in 1991. Appointed in 2015, Berrizbeitia is the 14th chair of the oldest landscape architecture department in the world, and only the second woman to hold the position.
“Gary’s sensibilities as a teacher and as a practitioner are one and the same—his unyielding efforts to reconcile imminent, often intractable forces of urbanization with ecological sustainability, cultural history, vegetative regimes, and thoughtful kindness are central to his pedagogy and practice both. I could not be more delighted he has accepted this appointment, and I am excited for what is to come under his leadership of the department. I also look forward to celebrating Anita’s important tenure as chair of the department and thank her for all that she has brought to the school,” says Sarah M. Whiting, Dean and Josep Lluís Sert Professor of Architecture.
“I’m humbled and honored in equal measure by this appointment, and I am grateful to Dean Whiting for her confidence and support,” Hilderbrand says. “For more than a century, Landscape Architecture at Harvard has positively shaped discourse in research, teaching, and practice in the field. We continue that legacy forward with renewed urgency in the face of ever more dramatic environmental and social upheaval. I’m grateful for Professor Anita Berrizbeitia’s remarkable and humane intellectual stewardship over the past seven years, and I look forward to working with my colleagues in the department and the school to uphold the commitment to design leadership that is demanded of us in this time. We stand well prepared.”
Gary Hilderbrand is a Founding Principal and Partner of Reed Hilderbrand. Works by Reed Hilderbrand have received more than 100 design awards to date. A committed practitioner, teacher, critic, and writer, Hilderbrand’s honors include Harvard University’s Charles Eliot Traveling Fellowship, the Rome Prize in Landscape Architecture, the Architectural League’s Emerging Voices Award with Douglas Reed, and the 2013 ASLA Firm of the Year award. DesignIntelligence named Hilderbrand one its “25 Most Admired Educators” of 2016. Gary is the recipient of the 2017 ASLA Design Medal, the highest design honor available to an American landscape architect.
Hilderbrand is committed to positioning landscape architecture’s role in reconciling intellectual and cultural traditions with contemporary forces of urbanization and change. Over the course of his prolific career, Hilderband has collaborated with Tadao Ando, Annabelle Selldorf, and Gensler on the expansion of the Sterling and Francine Clark Art Institute in Williamstown, MA; developed four phases of revitalizing the Hudson River waterfront at Long Dock Park, Beacon, NY; and led the Cambridge Urban Forest Master Plan for the City of Cambridge, MA. More recently, Reed Hilderbrand were part of five firms participating in the Tidal Basin Ideas Lab, a design ideas competition that reimagines the future of Washington, D.C.’s iconic Tidal Basin. Current works include the repositioning of New York City’s Lever House, the Hirshhorn Museum and Sculpture Garden, the new Farrand House at Dumbarton Oaks, and major interventions at the Storm King Art Center.
Hilderbrand’s essays have been featured in Landscape Architecture, Topos, Harvard Design Magazine, Architecture Boston, Clark Art Journal, Arnoldia, New England Journal of Garden History, and Land Forum. Hilderbrand is co-author of Visible | Invisible, a Reed Hilderbrand monograph (2012), and he has produced two other books: Making a Landscape of Continuity: The Practice of Innocenti & Webel (1997), which was recognized by ASLA and AIGA (50 Best Books); and The Miller Garden: Icon of Modernism (1999).
He has served on the editorial boards of Spacemaker Press, Harvard Design Magazine, and Landscape Architecture Magazine. As a competition juror, he’s participated in Harvard’s Green Prize for Urban Design (2006, 2013); I Premi Europeu de Paisatge Rosa Barba Barcelona (2000, 2002, 2003, 2018); and “Suburbia Transformed” for the James Rose Center (2010). He chaired the ASLA National Awards Jury in 2005 and the ASLA Annual Student Awards Jury in 2006