colleen e. vacelet, pla, asla, LEED® AP BD+C, ISA CA
Her approach to gardens has been shaped by the time she spends in France every year. Traveling to a different region each visit, she has taken on the study of the French Garden—the delicate balance of their simplicity and intricacy. Colleen’s passion for landscape architecture flows into everything she does. She is an adjunct professor at University of Maryland, a board member for Cylburn Arboretum, a mentor, a past president of MDASLA, a chicken farmer, a beekeeper, a wife, and a mom of two little ones (ages 3 and 5).
Recently, Colleen was honored as a Baltimore Business Journal 40 Under 40 Honoree, and received the GBC Bridging the Gap Achievement award that recognizes exceptional minority and women-owned business. She was also part of the first cohort in 2016 for the Goldman Sachs 10,000 Small Businesses.
Beyond her business, Colleen is active as a mentor in the Maryland community. She mentors on the national and local level with professionals, college students, and high school students. She serves as a National Mentor with CREW (Commercial Real Estate Women) for their leadership development program, and has spoken as a panelist for CREW Baltimore regarding women of influence and how to navigate the climb. She is a “speed mentor” for the Baltimore Business Journal, mentors her students at University of Maryland, and serves as a local mentor for the Urban Alliance, providing guided internships for these high school students. Recently, she was asked to be a part of a steering committee for the Bloomberg School of Public Health regarding how small business owners can provide a healthy, safe, and motivated working atmosphere for disconnected youth.
More than anything, Colleen cares about her children and the world they will grow up in. She “walks the talk” in her role as an environmental steward, both as a designer and citizen. On her property she raises chickens and bees, and grows veggies.