Tom Stearns and Stearns Associates, LLC


D. Thomas Stearns



Tom Stearns has 30 years of experience as a land planner and landscape architect. Before founding Stearns Associates, he was a Studio Principal with Hillier in Princeton, NJ where he worked for 16 years and was Director of Hillier’s Land Planning Studio.

His background includes a range of commercial, institutional and residential project types. Commercial projects include corporate, office, research and development, industrial, retail and mixed-use. 

Institutional projects include health care, higher education and K-12. He has worked nationally and internationally for some of the most respected developers, corporations and institutions.


Mr. Stearns understands how project planning and design must respond to market conditions, physical and environmental constraints, and financial and operational objectives, while not compromising the design integrity. His success over the years has been based on listening to his clients, being responsive and meeting their expectations for design, schedule and budget.

Mr. Stearns is a licensed professional planner and landscape architect. Through his extensive experience, he is familiar with federal, state and local land use regulations and knows what it takes to get a project through the governmental approval process.

He brings a design philosophy to planning and landscape architecture that explores historical precedent, theory and strong architectural ideas.



Tom Stearns' 30 years of experience brings to clients:

• Experience in collaboration with other professionals and many notable architects

• Knowledge of the land development, approvals, and building process with an emphasis on large, complex, and fast-tracked projects

• Over 12 million square feet of corporate and investment offices constructed, and 8 million square feet approved

•Experience with estate homes, single family and multi-family developments including mixed-use and new urbanism for regional and national home builders

• Diverse experience across a wide variety of project types and locales, both national and international

• A portfolio of significant planning and executed landscape architectural projects

• Experience with sustainable design including: LEED process, low impact development techniques, intensive green roofs, and constructed wetlands

• A design philosophy that respects the site and its history yet is balanced by clear, strong architectural ideas

• Expediency, responsiveness and personal service

• Adherence to schedule and budget



Pennsylvania State University, BS Landscape Architecture

Ball State University, Graduate Studies, Business and Architecture

New York University, Diploma Program in Real Estate Investment and Analysis

Rutgers University, Graduate Studies, Planning Law

Princeton University, Studies in Architectural History and Theory


Professional Licenses

Professional Planner: New Jersey

AICP American Institute of Certified Planners

Landscape Architect: NJ, NY, CT, PA, DE, MD, OH, KY, KS, NC

Certified Landscape Architect NJ  21AS00051200
Licensed Professional Planner NJ 33LI00509600


Employment History

Grever & Ward, Buffalo, NY

Landplus West, Indianapolis, IN

HOK, Dallas, TX

Thomas Balsley Associates, New York, NY

Mark Morrison Associates, New York, NY

CUH2A, Princeton, NJ

Hillier, Princeton, NJ

Stearns Associates, LLC


Professional Associations

American Society of Landscape Architects

American Planning Association

American Institute of Certified Planners

National Association of Home Builders

New Jersey Builders Association

Community Builders Association

Green Roofs for Healthy Cities

US Green Building Council (USGBC)

NJ Green Building Council (NJGBC)

Delaware Valley Green Building Council (DVGBC)