June 20, 2016 / Member News

Mahan Rykiel Continues Growth Adding New Staff

2016 Spring MRA New Hires

From left to right: Bryan McKnight, Karen Kuo, Jeff Dube, Julie Shapiro, Lamonte Tyler, Shi Chen, Steven Roberts, Emily Lansinger and Amina Mohamed.

Baltimore, MD (June 20, 2016) – Mahan Rykiel Associates, Inc. (MRA), a Baltimore-based landscape architecture, urban design and planning firm, is pleased to announce that Amina Mohamed and Jeff Dube have joined their staff as landscape designers. Lamonte Tyler joins as our new IT Administrator, and Bryan McKnight, Karen Kuo, Julie Shapiro and Shi Chen are our summer interns.
New Hires:
Amina Mohamed graduated in May with a dual Master’s degree in Landscape Architecture and Community Planning at the University of Maryland, College Park, with an interest in environmental justice and community engagement. She was the graduate recipient this spring of the MD ASLA’s University Olmsted Scholars Award. Her past work includes the study of designed experiments into the educational landscape as well as youth perceptions of local watersheds.  Most recently, she examined spatial patterns of urban vacant land in Baltimore as part of her Master’s Thesis. Amina interned with MRA last summer and spring and joins us as a Landscape Designer in our Institutional and Civic studios.
Jeff Dube received his Master of Landscape Architecture at the University of Michigan. Additionally, he holds a Bachelor of Science from the University of Vermont in Environmental Science. Jeff combines his knowledge of ecological science and design to reimagine the contemporary urban landscape so that civic and ecological functions are met simultaneously. In addition to his studies, he is active in volunteer efforts for community and volunteer groups. Jeff interned at MRA last summer, and he joins us as a Landscape Designer in our Civic studio.
Lamonte Tyler joins us as an IT Administrator. Lamont comes to us from Fox News where he worked for more than 7 years as an IT Supervisor trouble shooting for the network in New York City and Washington D.C.  He has four Masters Degrees in Educational Technology, Library Science, Information Science and Information Technology, and is currently working on a Doctorate in Information Technology at Walden University. Lamonte is an active and Life Member of the following: Omega Psi Phi Fraternity, Inc., Disabled American Veterans (DAV), and National Association for the Advancement of Colored People (NAACP).
Emily Lansinger and Steven Roberts join our staff to assist in the field on our Statewide ADA Sidewalks Inventory and Data Collection contracts.  Their field work includes the use of GPS devices, iPads, SmartLevels and tape measures. Steven comes to us through the Hire One Youth Works program.  The program gives employers an opportunity to shape their future workforce by hiring at least one responsible, job-ready Baltimore City resident between the ages of 16-21 for the summer. This is MRA’s fourth year participating in the City Program. Emily graduated this year from Jacksonville University and will be pursuing a Master’s degree in Spanish.
Bryan McKnight joins our Institutional Studio as an intern. He studies landscape architecture at SUNY in the Environmental Sciences and Forestry School and will be a senior in the fall. Bryan feels a commitment to improving the quality and function of outdoor spaces. He loves weaving the creation of civic spaces with the design and planning of ecological and natural systems.
Karen Kuo is a rising senior at Pennsylvania State University. Moving around a lot during her childhood, she has experienced many diverse landscapes and distinctive cultures. These invaluable experiences have shaped her passion for community design. She enjoys working closely with people in order to design engaging landscapes for the community.
Julie Shapiro is a master of landscape architecture candidate at the University of Virginia, entering her third year this fall. She holds a bachelor’s degree in biology from Oberlin College, with a focus on ecology and plant biology. With experience in agriculture, conservation, and youth development, Julie is interested in integrating vibrant ecological and social functions in public landscapes.
Shi Chen just completed her first year of graduate school at the Rhode Island School of Design. She also holds a bachelor of landscape architecture degree from Chongqing University in China.  Inspired by urban and natural systems, she believes that landscape architecture plays an important role in combining both. She’s also very interested in post-industrial site renovation projects which are becoming an issue all over the world now.
This summer, in addition to assisting with design work in their studios, the interns will be working on a design-research project for Phase I of the Baltimore Museum of Industry campus master plan. The exploration will document and visualize the relationship between the Museum, the Port of Baltimore, and the region’s larger cultural landscape of industry. The effort will strengthen and reveal ways in which the people of Baltimore, the land, and water have and continue to shape our cities and our future.
“We are thrilled to have these new additions to our firm, and they each bring unique and exceptional skills to allow us to continue to grow the practice and expand our research and design capabilities,” said Richard Jones, President of MRA.
Release courtesy Mahan Rykiel Associates, Inc.