October 26, 2010
By Mike Welton & Cheryl Wilder
New Yorkers may claim Frederick Law Olmsted as their own, and Virginians might cling to the gardens that Charles Gillette once molded and shaped, but North Carolinians today can embrace their own living icon of the landscape architecture profession.
When Manteo native Richard “Dick” Bell launched his practice in 1955, he was just a few years out of N.C. State’s School of Design. A leader, an educator and a winner of the Rome Prize, he’d spent time in South Florida, working with Morris Lapidus on the landscape for Miami’s Fountainbleu Hotel. Back in Raleigh though, he was determined to promote landscape architecture as a reputable profession for North Carolina.
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