Archive | Membership News

If Not Me, Then Who?

While traveling for AIA business recently, I called up a close friend and confidant in the profession to let him know that I would be in his town.  With excitement, we synched our schedules and connected over dinner and a libation or two.  As I was sharing with this individual how proud I was of all that he had accomplished in the profession and community, I asked him an important question.

My question was, “Why are you doing all of this?”

His response was, “if not me, then who…

Corey Clayborne, AIA

This answer resonated with me.  As I look around, I see that architects struggle to remain relevant in today’s world.  Some may disagree.  But how do you explain the United States of America having a neurosurgeon instead of a design professional as the Secretary of Housing and Urban Development?  Locally, why are there Planning Commissions with no appointed architects?  How come the majority of the general public has no idea this is Architecture Week?

Perhaps, it is because we work our 9 to 5 and go home.  We don’t have any more time to give with the competing priorities in our lives that are already tugging on us.  Perhaps, we think other people are going to raise their hand and step up.  The fact of the matter is that it is not happening.  Maybe, we believe the timing is not right.  Let’s wait for this to end or that to pass.  The reality is that there is never a perfect time.

This leads me to ask you, “Why are you an AIA member?”

I’m hopeful the answer is deeper than “my firm pays for it” or “I need some letters after my name”.  If that is your answer, then you are short-circuiting the power of what you can accomplish through your training as an architect.  As the membership renewal season just closed, my challenge to you is to find one way you will use your skillsets this year to make a difference in your firm, the profession, or the community.

When you determine the answer, use the AIA as the vehicle to achieve those aspirations.  Start small.   Join a local AIA event committee that has a finite start and stop duration.  Volunteer to be a design critic at one of our universities.  Attend a Meeting of the Roundtables to discuss pertinent practice issues with your colleagues.  This is the true value of membership.

Individually, let’s take control of our own destiny.  If we all do that, we will collectively control the destiny of the architecture profession.

R. Corey Clayborne, AIA
Executive Vice President

Posted in Membership News

Virtual Membership Meeting


AIA Virginia Board of Directors will again be hosting a virtual membership meeting on Friday, June 15, 2018. Members will be able to dial-in to hear about the important work done on your behalf by AIA Virginia.

Watch your inbox for an invitation to register and the meeting agenda.

Posted in Membership News

Where’s Corey

Executive Vice President, Corey Clayborne, has pledged to get around the state and visit firms, components, partner organizations, and universities.

Here’s what’s on his travel schedule:

AIA Local and Regional Engagement

Firm Visits
AIA Blue Ridge
April 5

AIA Virginia Board of Directors Meeting
Virginia Tech
April 6

AIA West Virginia Awards Gala
April 7
Charleston, WV

Firm Visits
AIA Hampton Roads
April 23

Ambassador Engagement
AIA Wisconsin Convention (Presenter)
May 9-10
Madison, WI

Posted in Membership News

New Architects

We understand the dedication and effort required to study for and pass the ARE. Congratulations to the following members for passing their exams and gaining licensure. This is great news that thrills all of us and we are so proud to call you architects!

Mr. Frederick K. Fischl, AIA (VAJR)
Ms. Sheena N. Mayfield, AIA (VAJR)
Ms. Kristin R. Moye, AIA (VABR)
Ms. Amanda Schlichting, AIA (VABR)
Mr. Jason A. Slatinsky, AIA (VANO)

Have you recently passed the ARE? Please send an email to your Member Services Director, Cathy Guske, to upgrade your membership and be featured in the next newsletter.

Posted in Membership News

New Members

We are always excited to welcome new members to Virginia. The following members recently joined the ranks of AIA Virginia.

New Architect Members

Ms. Jennifer B. Mott, AIA (VACN)
Mrs. Tiffany Wilson, AIA (VANO)

New Associate Members

Miss Erin Barkman, Assoc. AIA (VANO)
Austin J. Beck, Assoc. AIA (VANO)
Mrs. Leyda T. Freeman, Assoc. AIA (VANO)
Ms. Shiying Gan, Assoc. AIA (VAHR)
Mr. Seth Logan Hall, Assoc. AIA (VAHR)
Mr. Jonathan C. Hiser, Assoc. AIA (VAHR)
Mr. Ryan T. Holcomb, Assoc. AIA (VABR)
Ms. Katja Kampmann, Assoc. AIA (VAHR)
Mr. Akshar G. Patel, Assoc. AIA (VAHR)
Mr. John C. Scruggs, Assoc. AIA (VAHR)
Mrs. Greta B. Van Tiem, Assoc. AIA (VAJR)

Transferred In

Miss Sidney Gardner, Assoc. AIA (VACN) from AIA Maryland
Miss Blaire K. Davis, Assoc. AIA (VANO) from AIA Florida
Mr. Daniel Assefa, AIA (VANO) from AIA New York
Mr. Eyob M. Alemnew, Assoc. AIA (VANO) from AIA Maryland
Mr. R. Warren Short, AIA (VANO) from AIA DC

New/Renewed Allied Members

Bob Meyer, SKANSKA USA Building
Joseph D’Alu, RMF Engineering
Kurt Luecke, Smart Vent Products, Inc.
Elizabeth Connolly, Pella Windows of Virginia
Timothy Allen, KC Company – Pella Windows & Doors

View all of the AIA Virginia Allied members

Posted in Membership News

Meet the Staff

We heard from you that you would like to get to know the AIA Virginia staff a little better, so here we go.

This month we highlight our Director of Sales, Judy Cheadle. You’ve probably seen Judy taking care of all of our wonderful exhibitors at Architecture Exchange East every year. Judy also handles capital partnerships and sponsorships for all of our events, websites, and this member newsletter. You can reach Judy at

Judy Cheadle

Where did you go to college and what did you study?
Smithdeal-Massey Business College, Medical Secretarial Degree

What is the last book you read?
The Fix by David Baldacci

What is your favorite thing to do to relax?

Who or what inspires you?
Meeting new people each day is something that excites me, inspires me.

What’s the best meal you’ve ever had?
Dinner at the Wayside Inn in Middletown, VA

What color crayon would you be?

What is your favorite thing to do on the weekends?
Spend time with family

What is one thing on your bucket list?
Zip lining in Aruba

What’s the best gift you have ever received?
A brooch from my Grandmother made of butterfly wings from Brazil

What’s the one TV show you never miss?
UVA Sports

White, dark, or milk chocolate?
Milk chocolate

Posted in Membership News

Your AIA Depends on You

In Virginia, it seems that the month of March always brings about the annual battle between Spring and Winter, with the first tease of warmth inevitably interrupted by a few final blasts of chill. And as I look outside at the unexpected mid-March covering of snowfall here in Hampton Roads, at least I can rest assured that Mother Nature is in charge, the season will change and the flowers will emerge.

Our national economy seems to also have an ebb and flow, albeit much less regular and without nature’s divine rhyme and reason. Following one of the harshest economic winters most anyone can remember, the last few years have had spurts of optimism and activity followed by periods of doubt and stalled progress. Recent signs might point to the potential of a sustained uptick and prolonged period of growth, with the AIA’s Architectural Billings Index (ABI) reaching its highest January score since 2007. January’s score not only represented an atypical busy start to the year but was also the 11th month of growth in the previous year. Now let’s hope that construction and financing can keep pace!

Eric Keplinger, AIA. Photo by Dan Currier

At AIA Virginia, Corey and the staff have been hard at work on a number of events in 2018, both new and repeat, that will make this year an exciting time to be a part of the organization. New to the AIA Virginia calendar this year was an event that occurred in Richmond on Tuesday, February 20 at the Omni Hotel. As a collaboration of allied professions with similar goals and objectives, ACE Virginia has been formed, a joint venture of AIA Virginia, Associated General Contractors of Virginia (AGC), and American Council of Engineering Companies of Virginia (ACEC). As the legislative session ramped up in Richmond, ACE offered a unique educational and networking event featuring leadership representatives from the Virginia Department of General Services. Panel discussions and breakout sessions featured a wide variety of topics important to all the various ACE constituents. This was followed by a networking happy hour with invitations sent out to key legislators from throughout the Commonwealth. (Read Corey’s wrap up here.) I attended this inaugural event and can personally attest to its success on a variety of levels and I look forward to future opportunities.

While the ACE event focused on areas of practice and government affairs, AIA Virginia is equally dedicated to promoting the design and creative components of professional endeavors. Design Forum XIII will be held on April 6-7 at the Taubman Museum of Art in Roanoke. This year’s event is entitled Blur, and will focus on the shifting boundaries between art, technology and architecture and how technologies are creating new links between artists and architects and enabling the exchange of ideas and techniques in new ways. The two-day conference will showcase presentations by dynamic figures in art and architecture who have embraced the blurring lines between the disciplines, including Eric Howeler, Doris Kim Sung, Nathan King, David Freeland and Refik Anadol. Learn more about the event and register for DFXIII here.

Continuing our efforts to reach out across the Commonwealth to our membership and local components, AIAVA will use this opportunity to host our March Board of Directors meeting at Virginia Tech and we look forward to interacting with our AIA Blue Ridge colleagues.

As I said in the January newsletter and strongly believe, this organization belongs to the membership, advocates and works on behalf of the membership, and is dependent on vital contributions of time and energy from the membership. Just as AIA Virginia is looking at new ways to reach out across geographical and professional boundaries to serve its members, I encourage each of you to look for ways to participate, by sponsoring and attending events, volunteering, and contributing to our vitally important AIA Virginia PAC.

Eric Keplinger, AIA
AIA Virginia

Posted in Membership News

Meet the Staff

We heard from you that you would like to get to know the AIA Virginia staff a little better, so here we go.

This month we highlight our Managing Director, Rhea George, Hon. AIA Virginia. Rhea has been with AIA Virginia for more than 10 years and currently manages many programs including the Virginia Design ForumArchitecture Exchange East, Awards for Excellence in Architecture and AIA Virginia Honors. You can contact Rhea at

Rhea George, Hon. AIA VA

Where did you go to college and what did you study?
I studied Anthropology at James Madison University.

What is the last book you read?
“War and Peace.” Just kidding … it was “The Last Days of Jack Sparks.” If I had known about this profile, I would have read something better.

What is your favorite thing to do to relax?
Read and drink a cup of tea (or wine) in front of the fire with my husband.

Who or what inspires you?
New ideas. Art. Music. Ugly things. Beautiful things. Kindness. Bravery. Hearing someone use the perfect word(s) to describe something. Lots of stuff – big and small.

What’s the best meal you’ve ever had?
I love getting a bushel or two of crabs in the summer with the whole family. It’s not so much about the food, but who you eat it with.

What color crayon would you be?
Black. Obviously.

What is your favorite thing to do on the weekends?
Laundry. Or at least that’s what you might think if you could see how I spend every weekend. When I’m not doing laundry, I like to watch movies, listen to records, or read.

What is one thing on your bucket list?
Create a bucket list, I guess? I clearly need to get my act together.

What’s the best gift you have ever received?
My best friend not only purchased tickets but also went with me to a Public Enemy concert for my birthday – even though she had exactly 0% interest in going. That’s true friendship.

What’s the one TV show you never miss?
Meh – I can miss most TV shows. I guess I would be pretty mad if I never got to see what happens next on “Game of Thrones.”

White, dark, or milk chocolate?
Dark. Obviously.

Posted in Membership News

New Webinar Series: Management & Entrepreneurship

AIA Virginia is excited to launch a new quarterly webinar series in partnership with Chartwell Capital focused on providing you with the tools to improve your practice management and entrepreneurship skills. The series, Management & Entrepreneurship with Chartwell Capital, will cover a number of topics, starting with navigating health insurance in 2018.

In this segment, we will discuss recent legislation as well as proposed rules from Health and Human Services, the Department of Labor and other agencies as you strategically plan for 2018 and beyond.

Learning Objectives:
1. Gain insight into past, current and future legislation and the impact on the Health Insurance Market.
2. Better understand and identify the tax-favored health insurance options that are available.
3. Better understand and identify various compliance regulations in effect for small and large employers.
4. Be able to better plan your employee benefits strategy in 2018 and beyond to compete for talent.

The seminar will take place April 17, 2018, from 11 a.m.-12 p.m., and participants will be able to earn 1 learning unit.

Register for “Health Insurance in 2018: How to Survive and Thrive”

After registering, you will receive a confirmation email containing information about joining the webinar.

We hope you join us for this exciting opportunity!

Posted in Membership News

From the February Board Meeting

AIA Virginia | 2018 Board of Directors
February 16, 2018
Summary of Actions

Motions Made and Approved:
The Board of Directors of AIA Virginia voted as follows:
● Approval of the December 8, 2017 (Morning Session) Meeting Minutes
● Approval of the December 8, 2017 (Afternoon Session) Meeting Minutes
● Approval of the Executive Committee to work with the Virginia Department of Emergency Management to refine and finalize the Memorandum of Understanding
● Approval to finalize the Memorandum of Understanding with the Virginia Department of Historic Resources regarding the Survey of Modern Buildings Pilot Program
● Appointment of the 2018 Secretary’s Advisory Committee
● Approval of the 2017 AIA Virginia Financial Audit
● Appointment of 2018 Finance Committee
● Appointment of the 2018 Nominating Committee
● Appointment of the 2018 Honors Committee


1. Position Architects as vital contributors to our built environment:
• Resiliency Partnership with Virginia Department of Emergency Management (VDEM): A discussion was held regarding the contents of the draft Memorandum of Understanding provided by VDEM. Board comments were provided for incorporation into the final document.

• National Mall Initiative: The “Resolution to Request the AIA Pursue Legislative Action Regarding the National Mall” as adopted unanimously by the AIA Virginia Executive Committee at its meeting on January 16, 2018, was shared. The Board of Directors approved requesting AIA National to lead a visionary planning effort of the National Mall at its August 18, 2017, meeting. It was noted that AIA Maryland adopted an identical resolution.

• Virginia Department of Historic Resources (VDHR) Survey of Modern Buildings Pilot Program: A draft Memorandum of Understanding was presented that delineated the scope of the pilot program. The goal of the program is to inventory historic buildings in Virginia from the 20th century which VDHR has a significant need of. The pilot program will occur in one local AIA chapter.

2. Advance knowledge and expertise of members:
• The Virginia Design Forum XIII will occur April 6-7, 2018 at the Taubman Museum in Roanoke, Virginia. The title of the Forum is called Blur: The Shifting Boundaries Between Art, Technology, and Architecture. Local legislators will be invited to the event.

• The Fellows Fete will occur on April 28, 2018, in Richmond to celebrate five new Fellows in the Region of the Virginias.

• The Professional Excellence Advisory Committee is currently establishing the scope and boundaries of the Architecture Exchange East Task Force.

• The new leadership structure for the Emerging Leaders in Architecture (ELA) program has been established and consists of a Chair, Vice-Chair, Past-Chair, Emeritus Advisor, and one leader from each local AIA Chapter.

3. Advocate for the Profession:
The 2018 PAC goal is $15,000.

The first ACE Joint Owner Forum event, a joint venture of the Virginia components of AIA, AGC, and ACEC will be held on February 20, 2018, in Richmond. This forum will be with the Commonwealth of Virginia’s Department of General Services and be followed by a legislative reception.

4. Implement a communication program that informs and facilitates connections:
The findings of the E-Communications survey were presented which had over 540 respondents.

The Communications and Outreach Advisory Committee is currently working on the scope of a Publication Workgroup. The workgroup would define the audience, provide aesthetic guidance, and general content boundaries for a future publication.

5. Become a model of a strong nonprofit and vibrant membership organization:
The 2017 membership count ended at 2,389 members.

The final fully executed Chartwell Capital Advisors Memorandum of Understanding that seeks to provide Financial Planning Services, Legal Services, Health Insurance, Commercial and Personal Lines Insurance, and Ancillary Benefits to AIA Virginia members was presented.


Treasurer’s Report:
AIA Virginia’s total revenue is nearly $50,000 greater and expenses are approximately $45,000 less than at this point in time last year.

EVP Report:
A briefing was provided on the December 2017 APELSCIDLA Meeting. The next APELSCIDLA Meeting is scheduled for March 20, 2018.

Outreach efforts continue and include events in Alexandria, Charlottesville, Danville, and Hampton.

President’s Report:
AIA Grassroots is in San Diego from March 12-14, 2018.

Next Meeting:
The next meeting of the AIA Virginia Board of Directors will be held on April 6, 2018, at Virginia Tech (Blacksburg).

Posted in Membership News

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Virginia Accord

  • The Virginia Accord

    Bringing together the planning and design disciplines to examine two key themes critical to the future — job creation and environmental sustainability — on Sept. 19-20, 2014 at the Virginia Accord.