Christopher Nolan, FASLA
Chief Operating Officer & Chief Landscape Architect
Reporting to the President & CEO, the Chief Operating Officer & Chief Landscape Architect leads the park-based work of the organization. Mr. Nolan is responsible for providing effective leadership to the programmatic and professional staff responsible for the planning, design, construction, maintenance, and operation of the Park’s landscapes, structures, and infrastructure, as well as all visitor services and public programs.
As Chief Operating Officer, Mr. Nolan is responsible for the strategic management and day-to-day operation of the Park, and for serving as the principal contract officer on all contracts for the restoration and operations program. The role of Chief Landscape Architect includes primary responsibility for the leadership and direction of the physical planning effort and the restoration / renovation program of the Conservancy’s Planning, Design & Construction Department. A NYS registered and licensed professional, the Chief Landscape Architect is the individual with principal technical oversight of all design and construction work in the Park, including the signing and sealing of any drawings and securing permits and filings as required.
Mr. Nolan collaborates with the Board, the President and CEO, and other members of the senior management team on strategic planning and decision-making for the organization, with a focus on providing input grounded in the purpose of the Park and the requirements of its stewardship and operation. He leads planning efforts to develop short and long term plans for park restoration and operations consistent with the Conservancy’s mission and strategic objectives.
Organization Management and Administration
Mr. Nolan collaborates with the President & CEO and other senior managers to develop the organization’s strategic and operational objectives. As a corporate officer, he works directly with the Board of Trustees on the Operations and Construction, Strategic Planning, and Executive Committees, and on other committees as required.
Design & Construction
As Chief Landscape Architect, Mr. Nolan provides leadership and direction to the design and construction program for the ongoing restoration of Park, establishing restoration and design goals and ensuring that they are met. He acts as the primary spokesperson for the organization on matters related to the design and restoration of the Park, advancing and promoting the organization’s reputation for excellence in design and preservation.
Landscape & Operations Management
As Chief Operating Officer, Mr. Nolan provides leadership, establishes organizational structure, and sets direction and expectations for the management of the Park’s landscapes and support of other city parks. He develops and directs the resources and services that support the stewardship of the landscape and operation of the Park, including trash management, film & event support, facilities & infrastructure maintenance, fleet maintenance, volunteers, and administrative support.
Mr. Nolan Collaborates with President & CEO and other Vice Presidents in development effort to ensure the organization achieves its funding goals. He develops program and project proposals that are consistent with the Conservancy’s long-range objectives and support the organization’s funding model, and he participates in development and fundraising activities to represent the organization’s goals, capabilities, and track record in restoring the Park, thereby helping to secure the confidence and commitment of donors and ensure that funding goals are met.
Since joining the Conservancy in 1989, Mr. Nolan has overseen a program of projects valued at greater than $200 million including such flagship projects as the reconstruction of the Great Lawn, the North Meadow, and Bethesda Terrace. He also has led several large-scale planning and design efforts such as the restoration of all five of the Park's water bodies, the reconstruction of its 21 playgrounds, as well as campaign to restore the Park's Woodlands.
Mr. Nolan holds a Bachelor's degree in Landscape Architecture from Cornell University. He is a registered landscape architect in New York State and a Fellow of the American Society of Landscape Architects.