President’s Letter

2017 Presidents Letter

Happy New Year! This is the time of year when we renew, refresh and prepare for the coming year’s goals in the form of resolutions.  Do you have a few of your own in mind?  I would like to take this opportunity to share some resolutions for all of us to consider in 2017 to help build a stronger AIA Birmingham.

Let’s BE PRESENT. Be present in person by attending chapter meetings, award ceremonies, and other chapter events.  There are so many wonderful opportunities within AIA to be involved in: continuing education programs, design awards, government affairs, lecture series, just to name a few.  AIA also supports the Alabama Center for Architecture (ACFA) and programs such as N2Architecture and Dream Architecture.  These programs have become very successful and are a joy to be involved with.  It always seems like the kids at these programs teach me more than I teach them!  Let’s also be present in mind by sharing our ideas and thoughts to the organization.  How can AIA serve you?  What events do you want to see?

Let’s BE SUPPORTIVE.  Part of the mission of the AIA is to “advocate for the value of architecture and give architects the resources they need to do their best work”.  I believe that applies to our membership as well.  We must advocate for the value of architecture.  We would never have stayed up all night to finish a project if we did not think it had value!  Let’s resolve to build one another up and in turn build up the profession that we love.  This year we will be kicking off an architecture awareness campaign. Every book has an author, every dress has a designer, and every BUILDING has an Architect.  AIA will send the attached postcard to all media that mentions a building, but does not list the Architect. We are PROMOTING our PROFESSION.  Email when you read an article that does NOT include the Architect on a project (please include the Architect in the email). The postcard with the Architect’s information will be mailed to the publisher.

Let’s BE UNITED.  We’ve all heard the proverb “it takes a village to raise a child.” This is certainly true with my family and I believe it is true in our profession.  It takes ALL of us working as a united voice to promote the value of an Architect.

Last year was a wonderful year for the chapter.  We saw an increase in membership, social media sponsorship and community visibility.  Every one of the chapter meetings was sold out!   I am excited and grateful to be the 2017 Chapter President and will work to carry this momentum into 2017!

Best wishes for happy New Year,



Lauren W. Gwaltney, AIA
2017 AIA Chapter President