2009 Speakers Archive

Omaha, NE
Boundless Design:  Expanding the Creative Community

Walter Hood established Hood Design in 1992, in Oakland, California.  The firm is committed to issues that address the reconstruction of urban landscapes within towns and cities.  Urban is defined as those landscapes where there is a collective density of inhabitants who share physical, social, political and economic resources.  The firm’s approach is multi-dimensional, exploring the role of specific landscape typologies that together reinforce and re-make landscape into the city morphology.

The firm’s principal, Walter Hood, is a Professor and former Chair of Landscape Architecture and Environmental Planning at the University of California, Berkeley.  Hood has worked in a variety of settings including community design, urban landscape design, art and research.  He was a fellow at the American Academy in Rome in Landscape Architecture, 1997.  He has exhibited and lectured on his professional projects and theoretical works nationally and abroad.  His work was recently featured in Open, New Designs for Public Space, The Van Alen Institute, 2003-04.  His work was also featured in the Cooper Hewitt Design Triennial, 2000, and his firm is designing the gardens and landscape for the New De Young Museum, San Francisco with Swiss architects Herzog and de Meuron scheduled for completion in 2005.


Patty McManus.  In her 22 years with Olsson Associates, Patty McManus worked her way up from receptionist/marketing assistant to being named president of the engineering and design consulting firm in 2004.  In 2007, she took on The OA Institute, a new venture within Olsson Associates that provides staff with new training programs that build a greater understanding of Olsson culture and enhance leadership skills throughout the organization.  Patty earned a bachelor’s degree in social sciences/secondary education from the University of Nebraska-Lincoln and a master’s degree in business from Doane College.  Patty has been involved nationally in the industry as editor of the Journal of Leadership and Management in Engineering.  In 2002, she was included on the Lincoln Journal Star’s list of 20 under 40.  In 2005, Patty was recognized by FORTUNE Small Business magazine as a “Best Boss.”


Steven Boody is co-founder and President of Boody Fine Arts.  As a business owner and art consultant, Boody brings 28 years  of strategic planning and program management to client projects.  Before founding Boody Fine Arts in 1978, he served five years as a Budget and Policy Analyst for the State of Missouri’s Office of Administration.  Boody holds a Master in Landscape Architecture and a Bachelor of Science in Forest Management from Iowa State University, a Master of Science in Public Administration from the University of Missouri, and an Associate in Arts with an emphasis in Botany from Ellsworth Community College.  He has also served the Rotary Club of Clayton, Missouri as President, Secretary, Treasurer, and board member.  Boody’s diverse education and experience brings a unique collaboration of the art industry, business principles and the design community to client projects.


Jun Kaneko was born in Nagoya, Japan in 1942.  He studied paiting there with Satoshi Ogawa during his adolescence, working in his studio during the day and attending high school in the evening.  He came to the United States in 1963 to continue those studies at Chouinard Institute of Art when his introduction to Fred Marer drew him to sculptural ceramics.  He proceeded to study with Peter Voulkos, Paul Soldner, and Jerry Rothman in California during the time now defined as the contemporary ceramics movement.  The following decade, Kaneko taught at some of the nation’s leading art schools, including Scripps College, Cranbrook Academy of Aft and Rhode Island School of Design.


James Patchett, ASLA is founder and President of Conservation Design Forum, Inc. a multi-disciplinary consulting firm located in Elmhurst, IL.  Jim combines his training as a landscape architect and hydrologist in the development of natural resource-based site planning and design techniques that involve the integration of innovative water resource management and ecological restoration strategies into built environments, Jim received an undergraduate degree in landscape architecture, and master’s degrees in both landscape architecture and civil engineering (water resources) from Iowa State University, and has completed the necessary course work towards a PhD in landscape architecture from the University of Michigan’s School of Natural Resources.


Brenda Doolley is the President of First National Buildings, a subsidiary of First National of Nebraska.  Brenda began her career with First National in 1989 and has served, in her current role, as President of First National Buildings, since 1999.  She is responsible for overall real estate management, planning, operations, corporate security, and sourcing for First National.  Brenda has been actively involved in the Omaha’s endeavors towards long-term Downtown Redevelopment Planning and serves as a member on the Omaha Downtown Business Improvement District Board.  Brenda also served as Chair on the Omaha Chamber of Commerce Steering Committee for the North Downtown Brownfield Conceptual Redevelopment Plan.



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