You can say this talented designer was born into this business. Gary's story took root in 1949 when his great grandfather, E.B. Westlake planted his first Christmas tree. The land that grew that tree also grew Westlake Tree Farms and it seems as soon as Gary could walk, this is where his life in the green industry began. Growing up in the rolling hills and rugged terrain of Saint Peter's Village in southeastern Pennsylvania, he was immersed in nature which no doubt inspired his love for the outdoors and drawing the world as he was experiencing it.
Gary studied landscape architecture and horticultural science at Penn State University's College of Arts and Architecture. He also studied abroad for a time in Rome which further influenced his love for architecture. When asked about a favorite project, he says its impossible to choose because "every design has it's own distinct persona, a uniqueness that keeps the challenge of design new and engaging..." For Gary the opportunity to curate the land within the constraints of space, light, and land regulations is particularly interesting. It's working within these contexts that allows a great designer to make the connection between a natural and cultivated landscape. Gary began his career in residential landscape design while interning with Hess Landscape Architects and continued on as a full time designer at Twin Industries in New Jersey where he further developed his skill in designing, surveying, and managing small and large scale landscape projects.
He has been with Terren since 2014 where he continues to cultivate exemplary work in the field. Besides the foundation of his family, he is influenced by the work of Dan Kiley, a pioneer of modern landscape design and the innovative approach of James Corner, a landscape architect and urban designer whose work is renowned for it's robust contemporary design across a variety of projects and scales.