Graduate Student Bios

Third Year Graduate Students



Kimberly Cloward-Drown

Kim Cloward-Drown was born and raised in Honolulu, Hawaii where she grew up hiking in the Ko'olau mountains and playing in the ocean off the South Shore of O'ahu. In 2007, she graduated from Pitzer College in Claremont, California with a bachelor's degree in both Environmental Studies and Studio Art . Interested in combining both disciplines, she was attracted to landscape architecture when a landscape architect told her he was "making a living making art." Kim comes to Utah State from Cal Poly Pomona where she just finished the first year of the MLA program. Kim hopes to have a positive impact by creating distinct and transformative spaces that increase livability and work towards environmental, economic, and social sustainability.

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Matthew Coombs

Matthew Coombs received a Bachelor of Business degree from the University of Idaho in 2003. He has worked as a Project Coordinator for the Orange County Land Trust in Orange County New York and been involved with several organic community farms (CSA’s) as a farm manager and grower. Matt was involved with the Peace Corps for 3 year leading training sessions with community members in Ecuador to improve agricultural practices. Matthew received a Vice Presidential Fellowship for 2011-12. 

After his first year in the program, Matt decided the Bio-Regional Planning MS degree would fit his future plans. Working with the LAEP Department Head and the Department of Environment and Society, Matt was the instrumental in structuring a joint MLA/MS degree. He is the first student to attempt both and will write two theses.

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Zachary Maughan

Zachary Maughan grew up in Cache Valley and received dual major Bachelor of Arts degrees in American Studies and German from Utah State University in 2009. He worked for 10 summers as a Forestry Technician with the US Forest Service working on the design, layout and construction to improve trails within the Logan Ranger District. Local hikers in Dry Canyon, Green Canyon and Providence Canyon are benefiting from Zac’s work. In joining the MLA program he hopes to focus on healthy landscape design and healthy communities with interests in alternative energy and historic development.


Mike Pace

Mike Pace was raised in Salem, Oregon. He has twenty years of landscape, nursery and construction industry experience. For six of those years he owned and operated Oregon Natural Landscapes, Inc., a maintenance and landscape contracting venue. Mike currently holds an All-Phase Landscape Construction Professional License in the State of Oregon.

Marleny Santana

Marleny Santana finished her undergraduate studies in Architecture in the Dominican Republic in 2008. After graduation, she worked for two years at Sal Studio (a Dominican architecture firm), and learned designing and work scope framing, project planning scheduling and legal procedures. Marleny’s interests include open space planning, green sustainable design with built and un-built landscapes, particularly the relationship with residential development and recreation open spaces that converge at urban and rural spheres. She finds mixing disciplines such as engineering and environmental sciences, site planning and design exciting because of the impact and future potential all these areas can have on her country.


Aaron Smith

Aaron Smith received his bachelor’s degree in History with a minor in Art from Utah State University in 2007. He is interested in cultural and historic landscapes which will use his training in history and apply his interest in creative work. He has always had an interest in the aesthetics of the land how human-designed and natural features can work together in his drawing and paintings. “The effect of man and nature can be a train wreck of egos, or it can be a sublime beauty of rational thinking and compromise,” Aaron wrote. Aaron wishes to work in disturbed areas and aid in the reclamation of its historical beauty and cultural significance.

 Second Year Graduate Students


Graydon Bascom

Graydon graduated from the University of Utah with a BS in Urban Planning in May of 2012. His original intention was to study architecture, and missed the design elements in the planning field of study. He has enjoyed landscaping work throughout the years, and has a love for the outdoors. Throughout his studies, Graydon has had many great experiences, from design workshops, to a semester in Heidelberg Germany. He is excited to study in beautiful Cache Valley. He comes to Logan with his wife Katrina and their three sons.

Chris Binder

Chris Binder comes to USU with professional experience as an educator and as a construction crew leader designing and constructing recreational trails for several non-profit conservation organizations. As a student in the MLA program he hopes to explore creative and resilient solutions to issues related to water cycling, waste management, energy, and food production. His interests include long distance backpacking, bicycle touring, permaculture, nutrition, and organic agriculture. Chris believes that good design will play an essential role in shaping a more desirable future for our communities.



Grant Hardy

Native to Seattle, Grant understands "green" in a way many have never seen. A natural ability to design and a love for landscaping led him to study Landscape Management and Business Management at BYU. There he excelled in digital and hand rendering. While in school Grant has done freelance landscape design, TA'd design courses, interned with the BYU Planning department, and worked as a landscape designer in Chicago. He enjoys researching water-wise plants, green roof tops, rain water harvesting, and gray water usage whenever he can find the time for it. He also enjoys reading, carving, and wants to learn how to paint with watercolor. Grant is looking forward to his years at USU to further hone his skills within design and horticulture.

Carly Klein

Carly grew up in Salt Lake City and graduated from the University of Utah with a degree in Urban Planning in 2010. In the summers while finishing her undergraduate degree, she worked for the Bureau of Land Management as a wildland firefighter. After graduating, she spent six months teaching English and traveling in the Chilean Patagonia. Her love of open spaces brought her back to school to study landscape architecture. Her experiences outside the classroom have helped focus her interests in natural resource management and open space design.


Stephen Peaden

Stephen comes from Murray, Utah where he found a love for the outdoors from the many nearby mountains and parks. While growing up, he became an artist by drawing the things he enjoyed in the outdoors. Stephen applied his talents and experiences by going to BYU to study Landscape Management, focusing on design. He also found time for minors in Business Management and Environmental Science. He has years of experience working in the green industry. For over a year he worked for a Landscape Architecture firm and also has experience in maintenance and installation for all types of landscapes from residential and commercial to city and sports turfs. Stephen believes that good planning holds the key to solving problems in the environment and community.


Nick Tanner

Nick recently graduated from BYU with a BS in landscape management. During his undergraduate education he focused his elective courses on design to satisfy his curiosity in landscape architecture. To further explore this interest he spent three months in Tonga on a mentored research project documenting the local function and design of residential landscapes. His current interests in landscape architecture are urban planning and development. Having lived in various parts of the world, Nick has a difficult time defining where he grew up. However, with the most consecutive time spent in Utah this is where he calls home.


Jennifer Wiseman

Jennifer has been involved with the green industry for the past nine years, working various positions from horticultural technician, to residential landscaping, to working as an assistant for both the Horticulture Director and the Curator at Red Butte Garden. She graduated from Utah State University with her Bachelor of Science in Ornamental Horticulture in 2009. She looks forward to utilizing her education and experience gained in this program to create sustainable urban designs along with open space planning and restoration.


First Year Graduate Students

Keni Althouse

Keni received her BS in Residential Landscape Design and Construction from Utah State University in 2013. With a passion for learning, she decided to continue her education in Landscape Architecture. During her undergraduate she had the opportunity to work for the Jordan Valley Water Conservancy Garden Park giving tours to visitors and teaching the community about principles of water-wise design and maintenance. Keni currently works for the GreenHouse Inc. in Logan which gives her a great opportunity to design for customers and keep up on plant knowledge. She is very excited to start her MLA and apply her knowledge of residential design to the larger scale.

Lynda Draper

Lynda grew up in Minnesota, where she learned to love and have fun in the great outdoors. She received a BS in Recreation Management with a minor in Business Administration at BYU-Provo. After working in the recreation field for a few years -- planning mud runs, organizing vendors for festivals, and helping run a water park -- she realized the importance of the landscape to successful outdoor recreation. Lynda is looking forward to applying her experiences to design landscapes that better facilitate recreation activities.

Wayne Honaker

Wayne received a BS in Business Management from Brigham Young University – Idaho in 2010. While there, he discovered Landscape Architecture and took a variety of courses in landscape design/ horticulture.   Wayne has spent several years in the landscaping industry, working as a landscaping crewman in Idaho and, more recently, as a crew foreman in Tallahassee, Florida. In this work, Wayne has greatly enjoyed the satisfaction of seeing a space transform from one thing into something better. He is excited to be “back in the west” at USU, to increase his knowledge and abilities in Landscape Architecture, and to further explore the many facets and intricacies of the profession.

Tanya Rice

Tanya received a BS from California State University, Long Beach in Health Science and secondary education. After college, she traveled around the world before settling down in her first career as an environmental consultant.  Her inherent vision for designing functional and esthetically pleasing living spaces, love for travel and the outdoors, and the appreciation for diversity of other cultures have been her inspiration to pursue a degree in Landscape Architecture. Her current interests pertain to the healthcare and corporate settings, exploring the benefits of healing gardens and outdoor work spaces and examining how these environments can help improve productivity and promote healing and overall wellness.