Colleen Mercer Clarke holds a Bachelor (1972) and Master of Science (1976) from Memorial University of Newfoundland, a Master of Landscape Architecture (1987) from the University of Guelph and a Doctorate in Interdisciplinary Studies (2010) from Dalhousie University. When not in school, she managed to accumulate over 40 years experience working in private firms, academia and government. Her portfolio ranges in scale from international and national coastal management initiatives, environmental audit and impact assessment, through watershed, regional and municipal planning initiatives, environmental management, ecosystem restoration and detailed site design. Since 2009, she has been engaged in the development and mobilization of knowledge on impending impacts from climate change and severe weather.
Colleen’s great passion has always been to ensure the sustainability of coastal environments and coastal communities. Working as a volunteer, she has served on a range of national and regional boards, and has advised governments and industry on policy and programs as varied as coastal adaptation to climate change and redevelopment of contaminated sites. A past-president of the CSLA (2003-2004), Colleen also served as President of the Atlantic Association of Landscape Architects. Currently she is Chair of the CSLA Committee on Climate Adaptation, as well as Co-Chair of the International Federation of Landscape Architect’s Working Group on Climate Change. Colleen is the recipient of the 2016 CSLA President’s Award.
In 2018, Colleen was accepted as a Member of the Commission on Ecosystem Management of the International Union for the Conservation of Nature (IUCN).