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1.5 LU

*This event is occurring as a live webinar. Registrants will be emailed a link to access the program; please continue to register.*

The Business of Design – Building a Legacy

The sixth panel of the 2020 TORCH Mentorship program explores how architects have woven personal and professional ambitions, ideologies, business acumen, and design goals into careers that span decades. A panel of AIA Fellows will discuss the importance of understanding oneselves and the world around us, as well as how to create an architectural legacy that improves our communities. After sharing their stories, the panelists will join virtual breakout rooms for intimate conversations with participants.

Porie Saikia-Eapen, FAIA, FCIOB, RIBA, Director, Environmental, Sustainability & Compliance, MTA
Curtis J. Moody, FAIA, NOMA, NCARB, LEED AP, Chairman of the Board, Moody Nolan
Mustafa K. Abadan, FAIA, Design Partner, SOM
Donna V. Robertson, Professor of Architecture, Illinois Institute of Technology

Dan Hart, FAIA, PE, Executive Vice president-Architecture, Parkhill

About the TORCH program: 
The TORCH Mentorship program partners emerging professionals and AIA Fellows over the course of the year to share personal strategies and paths to success in the architecture profession. TORCH includes public panel discussions plus one-to-one mentor matching for a longer term discussion.

About the speakers:

Dan Hart, FAIA, PE is the Executive Vice President of Architecture, member of the Board of Directors and Principal with Parkhill, Smith & Cooper, a 450-person firm in Texas, New Mexico and Oklahoma. Based in Austin, Hart has been the Texas Society of Architects President, The American Institute of Architects (AIA) Strategic Council Moderator and is finishing his final year on the AIA Board of Directors, chairing the Public Outreach Committee and Co-chairing the COVID-19 Business Continuity Task Force.  He will be the national President of the AIA in 2022. Hart was a dual degree graduate in architecture and civil engineering at Texas Tech and went on to licensure as both architect and engineer. Hart has taught architectural engineering at Texas Tech University to senior level students. Hart was the 2017 Texas Tech University College of Architecture Distinguished Alumnus and the founding President of the college’s Design Leadership Alliance.

Porie Saikia, FAIA, (aka Saikia-Eapen) is a Registered Architect/USA, Chartered Architect/UK, Chartered Construction Manager/UK, and a Fellow of the American Institute of Architects as well as a Fellow of the Chartered Institute of Building. Her advocacy for a sustainable built environment is reflected in the various positions she has held in the industry both in the government and the private sector. Currently as the Director, Environmental Sustainability and Compliance at the MTA NY, she is responsible for taking forward the vision for Environmentally Sustainable MTA across its five agencies, developing strategies for Renewable Energy, GHG Reduction and Energy Efficiency, incorporating long-term sustainability goals, anticipating trends in industry, technology, society, and legislative & regulatory practices.

While founding his firm in 1982, Curtis J Moody, FAIA decided to build it on a foundation of diversity of thought. Moody has continuously challenged what once was the status quo and has created a corporate environment that is both inclusive and equitable. This allows the profession to have a full range of creative impact from all employees – no matter the ethnicity or gender. Moody Nolan, Inc., has progressed into the largest African American architectural firm in the country and has won over 275 design awards. Moody has gained personal recognition with the prestigious Whitney M. Young Jr. (1982) award as an outstanding African American Architect in the United States. In 2002, Moody received the Distinguished Service Award from The Ohio State University. And in 2007, he received the AIA Ohio Gold Medal Award just one year after Moody Nolan received the AIA Ohio Gold Medal Firm of the Year Award, making Moody Nolan the only firm to win this  desirable award consecutively. He received his Bachelor of Science, Architecture from The Ohio StateUniversity in 1973, and in 2002, the University presented him with the Distinguished Service Award, being one of only three recipients that year.  Following his undergraduate work at OSU, he went on to study Urban School Planning & Design at Harvard Graduate School of Design in 2000.

Mustafa Kemal Abadan, FAIA, has been with SOM for 36 years, was elected a Partner in 1995, and specializes in designing complex and challenging projects. Abadan was raised and educated in Turkey, Germany, and the United States. As an undergraduate student at Cornell University’s Architecture program, he distinguished himself by winning the Art Gensler Award for Design Excellence and the Eschweiler Prize for Scholastic Excellence in Design, laying the foundations for his modernist architectural convictions. Abadan’s cosmopolitan career is an expression of his curiosity, interest in and collaboration with others, and a restless creative talent that is equally at home in distant places as it is in his adopted home of New York. Abadan has had a great impact at SOM, designing the firm’s first completed commercial buildings in Japan, Hong Kong, Singapore, Philippines, Brazil, Chile, and Kazakhstan. Numerous organizations and institutions have recognized Abadan’s contribution to architecture with awards and honors including the American Institute of Architects which elected him a Fellow in 2007, an honor bestowed on only 3% of the profession. His projects have received numerous awards from the American Institute of Architects, Chicago Athenaeum, and Progressive Architecture. Abadan has long been active in philanthropic and civic organizations. As the Chairman of the SOM Foundation since 2005, he has created opportunities for newly graduating Architecture students to conduct in depth research by establishing the prestigious “SOM Award.” He has restructured and enhanced the annual Student Traveling Fellowships, and expanded the number of SOM Foundation Awards in the UK and China. 

Since 2012, Prof. Donna V. Robertson is an architecture design critic and seminar instructor for the College of Architecture at Illinois Institute of Technology. She teaches Fourth Year undergraduate studio, and a case study seminar on Contemporary Chicago Architecture. Her focus is on the political and social benefits of design excellence, and how architecture functions as an articulation and generator of positive cultural and civic development. As IIT Dean of Architecture (1996-2012), Robertson worked to update and invigorate the pedagogical and architectural heritage of the College, following on Mies’ time at IIT and anticipating the imperatives of the 21st century. She expanded IIT’s programs of study, adding a Master of Landscape Architecture, a Master of Integrated Building Design, and concentrations in Sustainable New Cities and Healthy Environments. She played a key role in IIT’s comprehensive program of physical renewal, resulting in new designs by renowned architects, and restoration of Mies’ masterpiece Crown Hall and the IIT Chapel, following on her career interest in building “adaptation”. Robertson was a board member and President of the Association of Collegiate Schools of Architecture, with a focus on women in the profession, and of the National Architectural Accrediting Board, working for a “kinder, gentler review process”. She was on the Board of the Society of Architectural Historians, is a Peer Reviewer for the GSA, and is on many design review committees such as for Chicago Park District. She recently was a juror for the 2018 Topaz Medallion for Education Prize for ACSA/AIA, and gave the John Burgee Lecture at Notre Dame School of Architecture.



Organized by
AIANY Emerging New York Architects Committee
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