Katie Coyne is a 2015 graduate of the MSSD and MSCRP programs where she split her time focusing on green affordable housing and urban ecology.
UT Impact Her thesis explored the socio-ecological value of Austin’s creeks and led to a community-based project called MyCreekATX
Background Katie holds a Bachelor’s of Science in Ecology from the University of Florida. Before grad school she worked on landscape, aquatic, coastal, and marine ecology research and advocacy, and as an environmental educator in both traditional and non-traditional classrooms. Katie frequently lectures about her work – within the last year she has been asked to speak about sustainable design and urban ecology at Rice University, Austin City Hall as part of the Grow Green Landscape Professional Training, the Urban Riparian Symposium, and for the Save Barton Creek Association to name a few. She spends her free time doing anything and everything outside with her wife and two dogs, and serves on the board of Equality Texas - the largest nonpartisan statewide political advocacy organization lobbying the Texas Legislature for the elimination of discrimination the LGTBQ community continues to face. Katie is also part of the Texas Riparian Association board.
Passion She is passionate about studying the overlap of social and ecological issues and her work aims to create better connections between people and the ecological systems around them.
Work Impact Katie has been working at Asakura Robinson since becoming an intern in June of 2015 and is currently an Associate Planner/Ecologist at their Austin office. Asakura Robinson is a planning, urban design, and landscape architecture firm focused on strengthening environments and positively impacting communities through innovation, engagement, stewardship, and an integrated design process. In the last year and a half, Katie has helped to formalize her firm’s internal Urban Ecology Studio. Asakura Robinson’s experience in Urban Ecology stems from the firm’s long-standing interest in equitably protecting, restoring, and enhancing natural resources through much of the firm’s work in landscape architecture, urban planning, and urban design. The aim of the studio is to reimagine landscapes at the intersection of human and environmental systems to optimize their ecological, cultural, and economic value. In practice, this often means helping municipal agencies, nonprofit environmental organizations, and community organizations to both take stock natural resources as well develop strategies for articulating, leveraging, and enhancing natural resource value toward community investment, green infrastructure improvement, public health, access to recreation and nature as well as general mobility and connectivity, and restored or increased ecological functioning.