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Architects Foundation Names New Executive Director

Washington, D.C.– The Architects Foundation Board of Directors today announced the appointment of Marci Reed, CFRE, MPA, to serve as the Executive Director of the organization. Starting on October 2nd, Reed will be responsible for all programs and activities related to the Architects Foundation, the philanthropic partner of The American Institute of Architects (AIA).

Reed joins the Architects Foundation from Southface Energy Institute, where she served as the Chief Officer of Development and Communications. At Southface, Reed directed key management initiatives, oversaw fundraising and communications activities, and served as a spokesperson for the organization. Reed was also Southface’s first director of development and communications from 2000-2006.

“We couldn’t be more confident in the skills that Marci brings to the Architects Foundation,” said Jeffery Potter, FAIA, who chairs the Foundation Board. “She also brings creativity and proven leadership, so I’m excited for the Foundation’s future in expanding the role it plays in improving the profession.”

Reed has previous AIA experience, including serving as Executive Director of AIA Georgia, AIA Atlanta, and the Architecture Foundation of Georgia. Reed attended Georgia State University, where she earned a BA in English and then completed her MPA, Nonprofit Management.

“I am grateful for the opportunity to join the Architects Foundation at this exciting moment,” Reed said. “After last year’s generous gift to the Foundation of $1M from AIA, we are able to expand the Diversity Advancement Scholarship program for 2018-2019 and give more students the chance to pursue a successful career in architecture. At the same time, we will look to enhance our preservation efforts and pursue additional programming areas for the future.”

The application submission period for the Architects Foundation’s Diversity Advancement Scholarships will open on October 25, 2017.  Learn more at

About The Architects Foundation

The Architects Foundation was created to celebrate architecture’s value by advancing tomorrow’s design leaders and preserving architectural treasures of the past. The Architects Foundation is positioning itself for new success, preparing to launch a momentous increase in scholarship programming, thanks to a recent gift of $1 million from AIA. By enhancing the program, the Foundation aims to attract and cultivate a diverse next generation of architects, and provide new opportunities to support the evolution of the profession. The Architects Foundation also preserves the historic Octagon building in the nation’s capital, seeking ways to best express the values of historic preservation work and keep the Octagon’s legacy alive with exhibits, educational programs and partnerships.

About The American Institute of Architects

Founded in 1857, The American Institute of Architects consistently works to create more valuable, healthy, secure, and sustainable buildings, neighborhoods, and communities. Through nearly 300 state and local chapters, AIA advocates for public policies that promote economic vitality and public wellbeing. Members adhere to a code of ethics and conduct to ensure the highest professional standards. AIA provides members with tools and resources to assist them in their careers and business as well as engaging civic and government leaders and the public to find solutions to pressing issues facing our communities, institutions, nation and world.

Architects Foundation announces winner of the Payette Sho-Ping Chin Memorial Academic Scholarship

Washington, D.C. – The Architects Foundation today announced the winner of its Payette Sho-Ping Chin Memorial Academic Scholarship, established by Payette Associates Inc. of Boston to assist and honor female architecture students. Olivia Huang, 24, a Master’s of Architecture student at the Massachusetts Institute of Technology (MIT), will receive $10,000 toward tuition.

Huang was born, raised, and educated in New Jersey, where she learned ballet, piano, and attended Princeton University. She earned a Bachelor of Arts in Architecture, then moved to Boston to attend graduate school at MIT.  Huang also works on systemic design with the Agncy, a Boston-based nonprofit focusing on affordable housing development, and theorizing about games and play. This summer Huang will intern at MASS Design Group or researching the justice system for her thesis project.

The Payette Sho-Ping Chin Memorial Academic Scholarship was established at The Architects Foundation to encourage the continuing education of female students in architecture. The scholarship is named after Sho-Ping Chin, FAIA, a long-time principal at the architecture firm Payette, a health-care practice leader, and Fellow and leader in the American Institute of Architects (AIA). She was a talented and compassionate architect who was fiercely determined to design healthcare architecture of the highest caliber for those in need. Chin was an impactful mentor who instilled within her teams a sense of camaraderie and commitment to design. As a founder of the AIA Women’s Leadership Summit, held biennially, Chin was instrumental in defining the national discourse for Women in Design. 

The Architects Foundation announces three additional recipients of the Diversity Advancement Scholarship

Washington, D.C. – The Architects Foundation has selected three additional recipients for the 2017 Diversity Advancement Scholarship. Tiffany Chang of Bellevue, WA, Omer Gorashi of Reston, VA and Louis Suarez of Pittsburgh, PA, will each receive $4,000 each year for up to five years of study. The Diversity Advancement Scholarship program was developed to encourage diversity in the architecture profession.

The Architects Foundation awards the Diversity Advancement Scholarships annually to rising first- and second-year students from a minority background who intend to study in a NAAB-accredited architecture program. These scholarships are supported by the American Institute of Architecture (AIA) and, in the 2018-19 school year, the program will likely double its size, thanks to a 2016 gift of $1 million from the AIA. Two Diversity Advancement scholarships funded by Giving Moore, a foundation of Benjamin Moore & Co., were announced in April. Chang, Gorashi, and Suarez and will join 11 other students in the 2017-18 school year participating in the Foundation’s scholarship program.

Tiffany Chang

Chang is a high school senior at Bellevue Christian School in Clyde Hill, Washington. A member of the National Honor Society, she has also been recognized as an AP Scholar. Chang has participated in the ACE (Architecture/Construction/Engineering) Mentor Program for the past three years, working with mentors from Freiheit & Ho Architects and MG2. She is proficient in Chinese (both Cantonese and Mandarin), and is working on becoming quadrilingual in Spanish.

Omer Gorashi

Gorashi is a senior at South Lakes High School. He is originally from Kosti, Sudan and was raised in Northern Virginia. He is passionate about social justice and global affairs, which has driven him to research housing for refugees. His favorite architect is AIA Gold Medal winner Moshe Safdie.

Louis Suarez

Suarez is a native of Pittsburgh, Pennsylvania. He is currently a first year architecture student at Carnegie Mellon University. His student work reflects a sensibility to highly crafted images that use both analogue and digital techniques to create moving experiential spaces. Suarez is also an active member of his community, and has volunteered nearly 500 hours to the Carnegie Library of Pittsburgh. He plans to continue moving his community forward as he embarks on his profession as an architect.

The scholarship jury, chaired by Foundation Board member James Walbridge, AIA, of Lincoln, NE, is comprised of a diverse group of teaching professionals and practitioners of the profession.  For more information about the Diversity Advancement Scholarship, please visit

The Architects Foundation and GIVING MOORE Announce the 2017 Diversity Advancement Scholarship Recipients

Washington, D.C. – The Architects Foundation, in partnership with GIVING MOORE, a foundation of Benjamin Moore & Co., have selected the recipients of the 2017 Diversity Advancement Scholarship. The scholarship provides assistance to individuals from a minority race or ethnicity pursuing a professional degree in architecture recognized by the National Architectural Accrediting Board (NAAB). The selected students will receive one $5,000 scholarship each in 2017 and an additional $5,000 each per year for up to five years of their undergraduate architectural studies.

Qualified applicants were required to submit a comprehensive essay detailing their personal journey and how it impacts their interest in architecture, along with examples of their creative work and letters of recommendation. The two winners selected by the panel of judges are:

  • Leslie Epps, rising Sophomore at The City College of New York, who plans to pursue a career in architecture that enables her to travel the world, design in other countries and expand her global experiences.
  • Sierra Callwood, rising Freshman at Tulane University, whose interests early on in robotics, art and history influenced her passion for the multifaceted discipline of architecture.

“It is an honor to recognize Leslie and Sierra with this scholarship,” said Jeff Potter, FAIA, President of the Architects Foundation. “Their hard work and desire to enter the profession serves as source of inspiration to those of us at the Architects Foundation and practicing architects everywhere. We look forward to the perspectives these scholars bring in shaping communities in the future.”

“We extend our sincere congratulations to Leslie Epps and Sierra Callwood, recipients of the 2017 Diversity Advancement Scholarships,” said Mike Searles, CEO of Benjamin Moore & Co. and Chairman of GIVING MOORE. “We are proud to support the next generation of architects and are committed to helping enhance their educational and professional development as they pursue careers in the architecture field.”

Additionally, GIVING MOORE is continuing its support of the 2015 winners providing financial assistance throughout the remaining time in their current five-year programs. To learn more about the Diversity Advancement Scholarship program visit