Peter Jacobs ’61 has received the 2020 Governor General’s Medal in Landscape Architecture, the highest honor bestowed by the Canadian Society of Landscape Architects (CSLA). The medal honors exceptional landscape architects whose lifetime achievements and contributions to the profession have had a unique and lasting impact on Canadian society.
Of Jacobs, the awards jury says, “Professor Peter Jacobs is a true renaissance man: award-winning practitioner, published author, orator, educator, leader, trailblazer, consultant, and, mentor. He is best described as having an insatiable curiosity, a clear vision, and an unfailing desire to contribute to a better world. Far from pursuing a predetermined path, Professor Jacobs has, during his 50-year career, successfully navigated uncharted waters to mark our world through the practice of landscape architecture.”
Dinu Bumbaru, Policy Director of Héritage Montréal, says, “He is a living heritage in service of human development through the improvement of habitats such as cities, neighborhoods, and other forms of inhabited territories, including the North and Indigenous communities.”
Jacobs is known for his leadership in, and advocacy of, the field of sustainable development. He is Professor of Landscape Architecture, École d’architecture de paysage, Faculté de l’aménagement, Université de Montréal, and continues to collaborate on planning and design projects.
“I have always said that I was educated at Antioch and trained at Harvard and MIT,” says Jacobs. He recalls rooming with Mario Capecchi ’61, canoeing in northern Minnesota with Joan Argetsinger Steitz ’63, and arguing with Stephen J. Gould ’63. Jacobs explains, “All these stimulating relationships and many others from a very small cohort of 1200 students at a small college buried in the middle of Ohio seemed perfectly natural until I emerged into a larger world and realized how exceptional my experiences were during my five years at Antioch.”
Other awards from Jacobs’ remarkable career include:
- The CSLA’s Teaching Award (2006)
- The rare tribune Université of Montréal’s Emeritus Professor (2016)
- several CSLA Regional Awards and Awards of Excellence for a variety of projects, including the Faubourg Québec project (1994) and la Place Berri (1992 and 1993)
- inducted as a CSLA Fellow (1981)and ASLA Fellow (1990)
- the AAPQ’s Frederick G. Todd Award (2013)
- the CSLA President’s Award (1994)and
- the prestigious CSLA Lifetime Achievement Award (2018).