In December of 2004, the CSLA was devastated by the untimely passing of our Past President Andre Schwabenbauer. At only 42, Andre had achieved much in his life, through his dedication to his family, his profession, and his community. Andre graduated from the University of Manitoba as Bachelor of Environmental Studies in 1984 and as Master of Landscape Architecture in 1992. He became a member of the Alberta Association of Landscape Architects (AALA) and the Canadian Society of Landscape Architects (CSLA) in 1991 and served on the AALA executive council from 1994 to 1998 as President-elect, President and Past-president. In 2001, Andre was elected CSLA President-elect and served as President from 2002 to 2003.
Shortly before assuming the CSLA Presidency, Andre was diagnosed with leukaemia. Thus began the series of battles with this disease, battles he fought quietly, courageously, and with great determination. Despite the daily personal challenges, Andre was unwavering in his commitment to the profession.
Andre received a number of awards for his work starting with an academic award for highest achievement from the Manitoba Association of Landscape Architects. In his private practice Andre received awards from the Alberta Association Canadian Institute of Planners (1995) - Award of Distinction for his work in the Canossa Neighbourhood Amendment (Storm Water Management Facility) and a National Citation Award from the Canadian Society of Landscape Architects (2000) for the preparation of the Naturescapes Guidebook prepared for The City of Edmonton, Edmonton Catholic Schools and Edmonton Public Schools.
The crowning achievement and a testimony to Andre’s commitment to his profession was his induction into the College of Fellows in the Canadian Society of Landscape Architects. Fellows of the Canadian Society of Landscape Architects are those who are recognized by their peers as having made an outstanding contribution to the profession. At the IFLA conference in 2003 in Calgary Andre was honoured by his peers and became a distinguished member of the College of Fellows.
Andre was instrumental in bringing the 40th World Congress of the International Federation of Landscape Architects annual conference to Calgary. When he began his Presidency, he was already deeply involved as co-chair of the Organizing Committee. Working closely with a stellar team of AALA volunteers, Andre worked tirelessly to advance planning for this landmark event. This conference brought landscape architects from all over the world to Calgary. As well, it provided a financial legacy in consolidating the CSLA Reserve Fund thereby providing stability for the future.
In addition to the workload posed by the Congress, Andre was instrumental in achieving some important milestones such as the stabilization of the production of Landscapes/Paysages, improved cooperation with the ASLA, and the advancement of new initiatives in the governance of the profession in Canada.
Throughout his Presidency, Andre was guided by his deep respect for the work of previous Boards of the CSLA and his personal vision of the profession. He was convinced that the past contributions of our profession to society would be surpassed only by the vital roles we could and must play in the future planning and stewardship of the resources of our nation.