Kristen Ford Haaf is a landscape urbanist and founder of Roots First. With training in landscape architecture, urban planning, and environmental science and policy, Kristen brings an interdisciplinary approach to the studio’s work. Kristen enjoys working with community partners to engage people in thinking about the future of their environment. She is known as a strategist who contributes to both the design and logistical aspects of project development, including conceptual design, grant writing, community engagement, and strategic planning. She graduated with a BA in Environmental Science and Policy from Duke University and received a Master of Landscape Architecture from NC State University and a Master of Urban and Regional Planning from UNC Chapel Hill.
Kristen serves as the board chair for the Creative Corridors Coalition, a Winston-Salem-based community organization working to transform routine DOT infrastructure projects through the integration of artful and iconic design elements and multi-modal connections. She is also a founding board member of the Community Design Studio, a non-profit collective of designers promoting dialogue, idea generation, and positive social change through community-based design projects. Kristen has served as an Adjunct Professor at Temple University and Visiting Artist at UNC School of the Arts.