Member Highlight: Nancy Prince

Congratulations to MEA Parks Chapter member Nancy Prince for receiving The Mary Purcell Public Service Award.

Mary Purcell, who dedicated 61 years of her life to NYC Parks, was an exemplary Parkie whose positive influence has substantially shaped the Agency. Holding a place in hearts of those who knew her, she is greatly missed. This award goes to a Parkie who demonstrates many of Mary’s greatest qualities: warmth, caring, devotion, strength, and dedication to public service.

Nancy Prince began her career at NYC Parks in 1985, starting as an Assistant Landscape Architect. She took on increasing responsibilities as a design supervisor, leading to roles as Deputy Chief of Design and now Chief of Landscape Architecture. Her creativity and high standards currently guide the work of nearly 100 landscape architects and a number of consulting firms. 

One of Nancy’s primary achievements is the establishment of the landscape architecture design principles, which guide the Capital Division in shaping successful urban green spaces. These principles reflect Nancy’s belief in the transformative power of design to enhance safety, accessibility, and community well-being. 

Nancy’s imprint on NYC Parks is significant, but her impact reaches beyond the agency. Her dedication to the landscape architecture profession is reflected by her election to the American Society of Landscape Architects Council of Fellows, numerous speaking engagements at national forums, and her mentorship to generations of landscape architects. Her generosity with her time and ability to find effective solutions fosters a collaborative environment where everyone is valued. Her compassionate approach sets her apart in daily leadership and has been a cornerstone of her career at the Olmsted Center. 

Recognizing the input of community stakeholders, Nancy adeptly addresses critical issues such as climate change, accessibility, and equity. Her commitment to adding trees for shade at even the smallest sites supports NYC Parks in effectively serving the needs of present and future generations of New Yorkers. Through her decades of service, unwavering dedication, and impact on our city’s landscape and communities, Nancy epitomizes the spirit of Mary Purcell. NYC Parks recognizes Nancy for her outstanding achievements and contributions to public service.