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"We don't stop playing because we grow old; we grow old because we stop playing."

- George Bernard Shaw

STAFF

MEGHAN TALAROWSKI, PLA, ASLA, CPSI

Founder and Executive Director

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Meghan believes that play environments in the United States can, and should, be better.

She has degrees in architecture and landscape architecture, almost 20 years of experience in the design field, is a licensed landscape architect, and a certified playground safety inspector. Her research focuses on how the design of play environments impacts physical health and social behavior of children and caregivers.

She has presented at TEDx Philadelphia, ASLA, AIA, IPA, the US Play Coalition, and Child in the City. She was a winner in the 2016 international Play Space design competition, a winner in the 2016 Kaboom Play Everywhere Challenge, and a finalist for two projects in the 2015 Knight Cities Challenge. She the chair of the steering committee for the US Play Coalition.

EMILY GALFOND, AICP, CPSI

Designer

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Emily is motivated by the way the design of public space can affect the physical, social, and emotional well-being of all people. She has had architecture and planning roles in the public, private, and non-profit sectors, in the US and abroad. She also has vast experience in childcare, working or volunteering at schools and daycare centers.

Through her professional and educational experiences, Emily has worked on design projects at a multitude of scales, from district plans to art installations. Her focus on design through a planning lens helps her see site-specific projects in the context of large-scale neighborhoods and systems.

Emily’s background in design, research, community engagement, and childcare gives her a unique approach to play space design. Working in the ADA office with the City of Pittsburgh also provided an in depth understanding of how to design spaces for people of all ages and abilities.

ESTHER LIM, BLA

Designer

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Esther sees play as a vehicle to address and mirror the social and cultural landscapes of America today. Her research, “Wonder Outside and Between Pages”, explores landscapes that have inspired children’s literature, receiving a Student Merit Award from NJASLA as well as an art installation in the Rutgers Art Library. She believes that children’s books, films, and another digital media have the potential to inspire innovative landscape designs today.

Esther attributes her love for parks and public play spaces to her upbringing in Europe and continues to bring that multicultural lens to the studio. She is also passionate about environmental justice advocacy and community service, leading events and curating cultural donation packages at her local library.

Prior to Studio Ludo, Esther worked as a designer in New York City on a variety of urban landscapes including affordable housing and school play environments. She graduated with a Bachelors in Landscape Architecture and Biology minor from Rutgers University in 2018.

KRITHIKA MOHAN, ASLA, CPSI

Designer

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Krithika believes that play is essential for a community’s well-being, and draws inspiration from spaces that encourage immersive play experiences for all ages. As a designer at Studio Ludo, she has worked on projects at a variety of scales, from Philadelphia’s first bicycle traffic park designed specifically for children, to a small parking lot transformed into a nature play haven, to a two-story climbing tower for a children’s museum, to custom birdhouses and climbing scrambles for a destination playground.

Her educational experiences include a 2018 ASLA Student Community Service Award winning community built project “Children’s Garden: Strengthening Mother-Child Relationships Within Prison Walls.” She has experience with environmental justice, community engagement, and research interest in public spaces of resilience and carbon negative materials.

TIFFANY DURKSON

Advocacy Program Manager

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Tiffany is passionate about all children having access to the ingredients for unstructured free play, to create meaningful and immersive experiences.

Her work at Studio Ludo spans from conducting field research for the System for Observing Mask Adherence and Distancing (SOMAD) study; to being the program coordinator for field researchers in 60 playgrounds in 10 major U.S cities as part of our National Study of Playgrounds; to developing, crafting, and distributing 10,000 Play Packs during the early days of the COVID-19 pandemic.

Tiffany helped create and now runs The Playbrary, which she built from scratch, curating and organizing thousands of gently used toys and fun loose parts that spark creativity. In doing so, she has diverted more than 4,000 pounds from the waste stream and has cultivated a thriving community asset serving more than 500 members and counting. The Playbrary is the winner of Philadelphia Magazine’s Best Play Space of 2022, has presented at the US Play Coalition, and been featured by local media outlets such as PHL17, Philadelphia Magazine, and Good Day Philadelphia.

ARASHI

Office Cat

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Arashi is a paw-some playmate who pounced her way into the Studio Ludo family after a stormy night in the streets of West Philadelphia. She is serious about play time, relaxation, and makes sure that her humans are the source of her fun.

Arashi’s background inspires her interest in stormwater management and water play, with a passion for any space that considers the comfort of her caregivers. Her presence in the office brings out the playfulness and creativity of all who interact with her, especially if you’re the one that gets to fill up her food bowl.