Chelina Odbert MUP '07

Chelina has been an active member of the GSD alumni community as a Connect mentor, critic, and lecturer, and she has hosted many summer interns at her mission-driven firm, Kounkuey Design Initiative (KDI). In her new position, she looks forward to expanding the reach of the Council through her global design network across the Americas, Europe, and Africa.

Chelina believes in the power of community-engaged design to advance racial, environmental, and economic equity in neighborhoods and cities. With KDI, she aims to bring good design to places where it is not often found and to connect localized design interventions to large-scale policy change. Her expertise includes gender equity and the built environment, child-friendly cities, and design for climate justice. In 2022, Chelina received the GSD Alumni Council Award, and KDI received the National Design Award for Landscape Architecture. Chelina has lectured globally on KDI’s community-engaged mode of practice and taught at the GSD; she currently holds a teaching appointment at UCLA.