Conversations with CELA: Past President
Dear CELA Members,

Over the summer, I will be recognizing the great work many of the CELA leaders have been doing in ‘Conversations with CELA’. You can find out more about positions and committees by going to:

I hope you enjoy reading about our colleagues and their role within CELA. 

Conversation with Past President, Charlene LeBleu

Where do you teach and what do you teach?
I teach in the Master of Landscape Architecture program at Auburn University Landscape Architecture, Auburn, AL, USA. I teach one of the service learning studios in the MLA 2 or MLA 3 year. I also teach Regional Ecology. My major research is focused around the Green Infrastructure Laboratory in the Auburn University Research Park,
Interesting fun fact
I am addicted to…Gish!
What is your CELA position title, Committee name and members, and a summary, in your own words, of responsibilities with CELA?
I am the Past President of CELA. I am a member of the CELA Executive Committee, and I am in charge of the Standing Committee on Conference and Events. I also co-chair the Standing Committee on Organization and Structure. My responsibilities with the CELA Executive Committee is to assist in overseeing the daily business of CELA. As Chair of the Standing Committee on Conference and Events, my committee meets monthly to review the agenda and business of CELA 2020 and future CELAs. The Standing Committee on Organization and Structure meets as needed (twice a month these days), and continues to review and update past CELA documents and policies like our CELA Bylaws.
What is your committee currently working on?
The Standing Committee on Conference and Events is currently working with Irene Angelos, Conference Planner, in reviewing space for on-site meetings and workshops and field studies for CELA 2020.
Why did you get involved with CELA?
I got involved with CELA because I love landscape architecture education, and I wanted to share my business skills and administrative skills with the organization I love. 
What has been the most rewarding part of your service work to CELA?
The most rewarding part of my service has been the “Thank You’ s” that I have received following the search for a new Executive Director, and the establishment of a CELA membership database and email. The hiring of Peter Kralka, Executive Director and IMI Executive Associates, Raleigh, NC has significantly updated the business of CELA over the last six months, and I look forward to the exciting future ahead of us!
What has been the most challenging?        
The most challenging was the groundwork creating the membership database and the updating and reorganization of CELA. All of these are ongoing, but I think the heavy lifting is behind us!

Happy Summer and Safe Travels!

Ashley Steffens, Associate Professor
University of Georgia, College of Environment and Design
CELA President 2019-2020