Prestigious Olmsted Medal to be Awarded to the Charles River Conservancy President


Wicked Local Cambridge

Founder and President of the Charles River Conservancy (CRC), Renata von Tscharner has been selected to receive the American Society of Landscape Architects’ (ASLA) prestigious Olmsted Medal.

Named in honor of renowned landscape architect Frederick Law Olmsted, the medal recognizes individuals, organizations, agencies, or programs outside the profession of landscape architecture for environmental leadership, vision, and stewardship. Established in 1990, one medal is awarded annually. Notable past recipients include former Interior Secretary Ken Salazar, Nobel Peace Prize Laureate Wangari Mathaai, former President Jimmy Carter and Roslynn Carter, and the Trustees of Reservations, among others.

Formally trained as an architect and urban designer in Switzerland, von Tscharner founded the Charles River Conservancy in 2000, a not-for-profit organization dedicated to the stewardship, renewal, and active use of the Charles River parklands from Boston Harbor to the Watertown Dam.

Under her leadership, the Conservancy has enlisted more than 21,000 volunteers who have contributed more than $1.4 million of donated labor to improve the health, safety, and beauty of the urban parklands along the Charles. She is the driving force behind the development of a skate park at North Point in Cambridge and a tireless advocate for improved access in the parklands including better pathways and bridge underpasses at the Anderson, Western Avenue, and River Street bridges that traverse the Charles River. She is also an avid advocate to bring the tradition of swimming back to the Charles.

“I am so honored to be recognized with this award,” said von Tscharner. “Fredrick Law Olmsted has been an inspiration to my work on behalf of the Charles River parklands; this extraordinary public space holds so much unrealized potential and it is so essential to the quality of life we enjoy in the Boston area, we must ensure that future generations will inherit a world-class riverfront park.”

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