Campus & Community

Twelve are named as GSD Loeb Fellows

9 min read

The Loeb Fellowship at the Harvard Design School (GSD) announced that 12 individuals have been awarded fellowships to participate in one year of independent study using the curriculum and programs of GSD as well as other resources at the University. The only program of its kind in the nation, the Loeb Fellowship provides a unique opportunity for nurturing the leadership potential and professional development of accomplished midcareer individuals in design and other fields related to the built and natural environment.

Loeb Fellowships are awarded to highly motivated individuals who can create independent study programs that make effective use of Harvard’s resources, and who will use their studies to benefit society at large. Established and endowed in 1970 by John L. Loeb ’24, the fellowships have been awarded to more than 300 individuals. In 1988, the American Institute of Architects recognized the fellowship “for improving the quality of the built environment through the education of the practitioners who affect that environment.”

Loeb Fellows come from a diverse range of professional backgrounds in both the public and private sectors, from traditional fields such as architecture, landscape architecture, and urban planning, to others whose work also concerns the urban and natural environment, such as journalists, artists, housing specialists, public officials, and community advocates. The interplay among such a wide range of professionals provides a unique learning environment. In addition to faculty and curriculum at GSD, Loeb Fellows also have access to curriculum at Harvard College and Harvard’s other graduate schools, including the schools of government, business, education, law, public health, and arts and sciences.

Fellows pursue their interests through course work, writing, research, and joint projects. They also serve as a resource for GSD and other parts of the University, bringing their experience and observations to the classroom, the studio, and special interest groups, and sharing with students the trends and challenges facing today’s practicing design professionals.

The 2002-03 Loeb Fellows

Gabriel Abraham is an architect and urban planner with Abt Associates of Cambridge. His primary interest is in planning for historic cities as they enter the 21st century, with a particular focus on urban places of the Middle East. In his most recent assignment he served as the project director for a new comprehensive development plan for Luxor, Egypt. He is interested in the intersection of tourism, historic preservation, economic development, environmental protection, and urban growth. While at GSD, Abraham will study urban design, development finance, historical preservation techniques, and cultural heritage policy.

Arnd Bruninghaus is an architect from Amsterdam where he serves as the managing director of Teun Koolhaas Associates. His current projects include one of the Netherlands’ first large-scale senior citizens “continuum of care” residential complexes, the renovation and extension of the royal Dutch Embassy in Cairo, and the regional government headquarters for the Overijssel Province of Holland. Bruninghaus’ work also includes large-scale planning and he is concerned with issues of density, transport alternatives, regional planning, and the appropriate role of the architect in the making of today’s cities. As a fellow, he will study the similarities and differences in American and European urban-planning strategies as well as the varying approaches to the shaping of urban growth on either side of the Atlantic.

Kathleen Bullard is the director of the Los Angeles River Center and Gardens for the Mountains Recreation and Conservation Authority. Trained as a landscape architect, she now oversees the River Center (an educational and community facility), and numerous projects along the 51-mile length of the Los Angeles River aimed at making it a more valuable community resource. Her work involves acquiring land within and along the watershed, overseeing the design and construction of parks at strategic locations, the planning of bike paths, and the restoration of the watershed as a natural element within the city. Bullard will study brown-field conversion, ecological restoration, and innovative techniques for cost-benefit analysis of public finance decisions.

Deborah Goddard is the director of Real Estate Development for the Boston Housing Authority (BHA). Trained as an attorney, she served as a senior development official for a major nonprofit and for the city of Boston before coming to the BHA seven years ago. She has directed HOPE VI redevelopment efforts at two of the city’s most troubled public housing developments – Mission Main and Orchard Park. She has been particularly interested in developing public-private partnerships that attract the best work from the private sector while securing high levels of public benefits. Goddard will use her time as a fellow to study city planning, public and private development, real estate finance, urban design and social service delivery.

David Goldberg is a journalist who has just taken a position as the director of communications for Smart Growth America. For the past 13 years he was on the staff of the Atlanta Journal-Constitution, where he covered metropolitan land use, transportation, regional economics, neighborhoods, smart growth and sprawl. In 1999, he wrote a guidebook for land-use journalists titled “Rethinking the American Dream: Covering Urban Sprawl.” He believes journalists have a critical role to play by informing the public about the forces that shape the built environment, as well as the consequences of seemingly unrelated decisions. As a fellow, Goldberg will study transportation, environmental preservation, regional economics, and urban planning and design.

Linda Haar is the chief of staff and director of Planning and Development of the Boston Redevelopment Authority (BRA). In her 30-year career at the BRA, she has been involved with every neighborhood in the city and all the issues of importance in the planning and growth of Boston. Most recently, she has served as director for the Seaport Public Realm Plan and has begun implementation of the Roxbury Master Plan, completed under her direction. She has been actively engaged in charting a course for planning in Boston that combines the demands of extensive citizen participation, aggressive developer demands, and very high standards for public benefits. At the Design School, Haar will focus her work on broadening her interdisciplinary knowledge, particularly in the fields of urban design, architecture, planning, and finance.

Susan Hamilton is the urban land administrator for the Louisville Development Authority. As such, she oversees a number of redevelopment efforts in downtown Louisville, Ky. Currently, she directs the Beargrass Creek Restoration project that will make this waterway into a useful and attractive urban amenity. As Louisville embarks on an economic development strategy that encourages redevelopment of its underutilized former industrial areas, she would like to use her background in land conservation to seek open space and restoration opportunities. She is interested in how local government can become a more effective participant in creating and sustaining healthy metropolitan communities. While at Harvard, Hamilton will study conservation design principles, metropolitan governance, and best practices in interagency coordination.

Yan Huang is the deputy director of the Beijing Municipal Planning Commission, where she coordinates the city’s planning agencies and oversees the development of comprehensive plans and planning regulations. Recently, she served as director of the Planning and Construction Department for the successful Beijing 2008 Olympic Bid Committee. In addition, she is the deputy director of the Olympic Venue Development Coordination Commission, which coordinates the Olympic venue planning and design for game and post-game use. As a Loeb Fellow, Huang will spend her time examining Western methods of historic preservation, transportation planning, environmental protection, and control of urban growth.

Robert Liberty is the executive director of 1000 Friends of Oregon. In this role, he has led the oldest of the statewide organizations advocating for smart growth, regional planning, and environmental preservation principles in its research, legislative, and planning efforts. He has undertaken initiatives to found the Coalition for a Livable Future with 50 other groups in Portland, Ore., to conduct research into the implications of current development trends in the Willamette Valley, and to defend Oregon’s landmark urban growth control legislation. He continues to seek creative ways to make the smart growth fight a positive search for new solutions rather than a negative attack on bad development schemes. While he is a fellow, Liberty will explore disciplines such as urban and rural planning and design, public finance, private development, and nonprofit governance.

Josephine Ramirez is a program officer with the Getty Grant Program in Los Angeles. She specializes in grant making in the cultural arts area. Her recent activities include management and supervision of the Multicultural Undergraduate Intern Program, which funds more than 80 local arts organizations, and the Cultural Forum, which produces an international policy conference on culture in partnership with the British Museum. Ramirez is particularly interested in amateur art making and its role and effects on civic life and urban space. While at the Design School, she will undertake additional research into the nonprofessional sector of the arts and its implications for cultural policy. She also wants to extend her knowledge of these activities to other cultures with which she has less experience.

Jennifer Siegal, an architect who specializes in nonpermanently sited structures, is the principal of the Office of Mobile Design. Her office focuses on developing “mobile” architecture, designing and constructing transportable, demountable and relocatable structures. Recent projects have included a Portable Construction Training Center, a Mobile ECO Lab and the iMobile, an online roving port for bringing Internet access to communities where it is not readily available in the homes. Siegal is interested in thinking about new ways of architecture that is “active, mobile, and everywhere dynamic.” She will spend her time as a fellow exploring alternative, urban community-based planning and design practices. She will also pursue her interest in lightweight materials and their application to various building types.

Jennifer Yoos is a partner in the architectural firm of Vincent James Associates. Her work has been guided by a conviction that both the practical and the theoretical aspects of architecture must be engaged simultaneously in the design of any structure. Each assignment begins with a substantial research effort into climate, culture, context and function. Recent projects include the Cable Natural History Museum in Cable, Wis., a university center for Tulane University, and the Rainbow Mixed-Use Housing Development in Minneapolis. As a fellow, Yoos will re-engage her architectural work with urban issues and planning strategies. She will pursue a particular interest in multilevel cities, continuing her research into the impacts of systems like the skyways in Minneapolis on public spaces of cities.

For more information about the Loeb Fellowship program, call (617) 495-9345, or visit the Web site at