Who We Are
Wilson WARE Group landscape architecture was established in 2007 with the intention to apply our numerous decades of Landscape Architectural experience to the project possibilities within the Lake Michigan Region. It is our objective, to educate how the everyday client approaches their garden and bring to them a sense of design, understanding and service which can be uncommon in today's professional services. Our experience comes from working on or in collaboration with others on master planned communities, commercial office building, golf courses, hotels, regional parks, community development programs, residential projects from $500 to over 2 million landscape budgets, to several community pro bono projects and many others.
John Ware
Ryan Ware

John Ware
Unknowingly, John Ware began his career in Landscape Architecture at an early age. Both Grandparents had a love of nature and brought this enjoyment into their own gardens. His Grandmother's perennial garden in Michigan was always a burst of color and texture regardless of the season. It wasn't until many years later that he realized her depth and understanding of combinations. Visiting his Grandfather's garden in the difficult soils and extreme conditions in Northern Arizona was truly inspiring to John's early development of space and organic applications. His Grandfather's garden was amongst pine trees, the soil was riddled with rocks and sunlight was at a premium, but his ability to take a small space and create a truly magical yet functional experience made John see beyond the problems and focus on the opportunities of each garden. Seeing the landscape through their eyes gave John the ability to embrace the limitations and expanses of space, how to listen and react to how a client will use the space and more specifically how the space will become an extension of the client, the architecture and the adjacent environment.

During John's high school education in Illinois he was first introduced to Architecture, more specifically the works of Frank Lloyd Wright. Wright's ability to focus on how the architecture should be fluid in how the client and the environment worked in harmony inspired John. This new found inspiration and family ties to Arizona, led him to focus on a degree in Architecture in 1991 at Arizona State University.

While taking classes towards acceptance into the School of Architecture he found himself at a crossroads. Many of his class projects focused more on how the architecture and site interacted with the client on the outside rather than how the architecture functioned internally. His professors saw this concentration and recommended he invest time in a few Landscape Architecture courses. This experience opened his eyes to the possibilities of a new and fulfilling career direction. In the spring of 1996 he excitedly graduated from Arizona State University with a Bachelors Degree in Landscape Architecture.

John interned and worked after graduation at the young Scottsdale firm of Neill/Vecchia & Associates. In such a small firm, he was given the opportunity to wear several hats and within the first year was managing his own projects. John worked on retail centers, Class A office complexes, housing subdivisions, subsequent parks and open space plans, hotel complexes, golf clubhouses, resorts and high-end private residential design. This early experience taught him how to work with clients, varied budgets, municipal entities and balance a variety of design challenges.

After nearly four years, John felt it essential to expand his skills into public sector projects. He went to work for Stantec and subsequently David Evans & Associates, both of Phoenix. During a short stay at each firm, John was able to work on various Del Webb communities, Interstate highway rest areas, apartment complexes and most interestingly a variety of large scale park designs. This varied experience and becoming a licensed Landscape Architect in early 2001, brought him to a turning point in his career. Focus on developing a career in Arizona or continue his professional development elsewhere. Chicago was an immediate choice as he and his future wife had returned to Chicago many times previously. They took a leap of faith, quit their jobs and moved to Chicago, where John immediately found employment at Douglas Hoerr Landscape Architecture.

His career at Douglas Hoerr Landscape Architecture (DHLA) gave John the ability to combine his love of nature, gardening and architecture. After quickly illustrating his work ethic and ability to take leads from the Principal he became the Residential Department Head within a few short years. Working closely with Douglas Hoerr, FASLA was invaluable to strengthen John's ability to see beyond the project's first impressions and artfully test each project individually. His experience at DHLA gave John opportunities to work on such projects as large scale streetscapes and public installations in Des Moines, Iowa, a complete re-design of the 7 acre trial garden at Ball Seed in West Chicago, and most specifically working with residential clients throughout the Great Lakes Region.

John's personal and professional experience has given him an insightful perspective about the field of Landscape Architecture. Establishing Wilson WARE Group in 2007 has given John the opportunity to bring his vast experiences to the everyday client. In case you are wondering, Wilson is the middle name of his number one cheerleader - his Grandfather, Lee Wilson Ware. His Grandparents and professional mentors have honed and developed his passion for creating unique outdoor spaces. John hopes to bring his firm's talents to any client, regardless of scope, with the understanding that the designs will listen to them, the architecture and the site.