Christine Edstrom O’Hara is a Professor of Landscape Architecture at California Polytechnic State University, San Luis Obispo. She received her Bachelor’s degree from Stanford University in English and Art History and Master’s degree from the University of Washington in Landscape Architecture and Preservation Planning. In 2002, she received the Douglas Dockery Thomas Fellowship in Garden History studying the regional design of Palos Verdes Estates and Balboa Park. Prof. O’Hara has lectured and published both nationally and internationally on landscape preservation as well as its application to sustainable landscape design and construction. Her current research focuses on the California work of the Olmsted firm, especially the Olmsted Brothers, and their approach to regionalism.
In addition to teaching, Ms. O’Hara practices landscape architecture and historic landscape restoration. She is a principal of m + o landscape architecture which concentrates on contemporary design in sustainable and green infrastructure solutions. This practice also includes the specialty niche of consulting on the restoration and preservation of historic landscapes by writing National Register Nominations and Cultural Landscape Reports, as well as restoration and rehabilitation plans for such projects as Rancho Los Alamitos (Long Beach, CA), Mountain View Cemetery (Piedmont, CA), Malaga Cove Garden (Palos Verdes Estates, CA), Righetti House (San Luis Obispo), and Hollywood Bungalow Courtyards (North Hollywood, CA). Ms. O’Hara is on the board of the California Garden and Landscape History and is a trustee for the National Association of Olmsted Parks. She views history and contemporary design as companion ideas where history provides the framework for understanding the direction of the field of landscape architecture.