About Elizabeth Barlow Rogers

Elizabeth Barlow Rogers is the president of the Foundation for Landscape Studies. A native of San Antonio, Texas, she earned a B.A. degree from Wellesley College and an M.A. in city planning from Yale University. In 1979, she was appointed Central Park administrator. The following year, in order to bring citizen support to the restoration and management renewal of Central Park, she initiated the Central Park Conservancy, the nation’s first public-private park partnership.

Rogers led the Conservancy as president until 1996, when she founded the Cityscape Institute. In 2002, she created the Garden History and Landscape Studies curriculum at the Bard Graduate Center, and in 2005 she established the Foundation for Landscape Studies, whose mission is to promote an active understanding of the meaning of place in human life through support of landscape-history scholarship, publication of the journal Site/Lines, and collaboration with other organizations and institutions on landscape-related projects. As the owner with her husband, Theodore C. Rogers, of the C. L. Browning Ranch in the Texas Hill Country, she oversees the enhancement of its natural beauty, ecological health, and educational value. 

A writer on the history of landscape design and the cultural meaning of place, Rogers is the author of The Forests and Wetlands of New York City (1971), Frederick Law Olmsted’s New York (1972), Rebuilding Central Park: A Management and Restoration Plan (1987), Landscape Design: A Cultural and Architectural History (2001), Romantic Gardens: Nature, Art, and Landscape Design (2010), Writing the Garden: A Literary Conversation Across Two Centuries (2011), Learning Las Vegas: Portrait of a Northern New Mexican Place (2013), and Green Metropolis: The Extraordinary Landscape of New York City as Nature, History, and Landscape Design. In addition, she is the coauthor with Jason Epstein of East Hampton: A History and Guide (1975).

Rogers is a life trustee of the Central Park Conservancy and a member of the boards of The Battery Conservancy and the Library of American Landscape History. She is a fellow of the American Academy of Arts and Sciences and a member of the advisory board of the National Association of Olmsted Parks and The Olana Partnership. She is an honorary member of the American Society of Landscape Architects and a recipient of the society’s 2005 LaGasse Medal. In 2010 she received the Green-Wood Historic Fund’s Dewitt Clinton Award in Arts, Literature, Preservation, and Historic Research and the Rockefeller Foundation’s Jane Jacobs Medal for lifetime achievement. In 2012 she was honored with the Henry Hope Reed Award from the School of Architecture at the University of Notre Dame, and in 2013 the Preservation League of New York State bestowed on her its Pillar of New York Award. In 2016 she received the New York Botanical Garden’s rarely conferred Gold Medal.