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AIA Michigan Newsletter
February 2014


In This Issue
President's Message and Executive Director's Message
New Members!
Continuing Education Calendar: Call for Information!
AIA Sustainability Leadership Opportunity Scan: January 2014 Update
The Grapevine
CEPR Chair Position Now Available!
Upcoming Events
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President's Message:
Paul Dannels

I'm increasingly convicted that our perspective on licensure is the single most pressing issue facing our profession today. Changes in technology, our culture, and in our economy may loom large, but they are for the most part beyond our control, and as such our responses to those issues will generally be reactive. What we do control are the ways in which we define ourselves to others, and licensure remains at the heart of that critical self-definition.

I had an opportunity earlier this month to address a gathering of information architects (note that I do not put the term in quotes). These are the designers who envision the digital, not physical, environments we inhabit. In terms that I thought they could appreciate, I helped them consider the accountability structures, including licensure, that help define our profession and that mark us, quite frankly, as a profession more mature than their own. I think my remarks were well received, and I share them for your consideration if you're so inclined.

Remarks: 2014 World Information Architecture Day


Wishing you the best in your practice, and feel free to send me a note...

  Paul Dannels Signature

Paul Dannels, FAIA

Executive Director's Message:
Cathy HeadshotHappy February!

2014 is a year of big changes for the AIA National, but we also have new developments here in Michigan that should be made known to the membership. This month I want to focus on the separation of AIA Michigan and AIA Detroit. Although AIA Michigan and AIA Detroit have been run separately for years, this year the AIA Detroit has moved out of the Beaubien House and into a different shared office space at DC3 
(485 W. Milwaukee Ave. Suite 100c, Detroit, MI 48202). The AIA Detroit Business Manager, Lauren Myrand, Associate AIA, still has the same phone number and email: 313.588.1411 and The AIA Michigan staff is happy to help members during this transition period but please make note of these changes for your local chapter needs. 

At the AIA National level, there have been developments with the Repostitioning Initiative and an invitation has been extended to all members to discuss current plans. Helene Combs Dreiling, FAIA, 2014 AIA President, Robert Ivy, FAIA, EVP/CEO, and Tina Litteral, Hon. AIA, 2014 CACE President, invite members to join them for a conversation about the progress of the AIA Repositioning Initiative. The next Town Hall call is Wednesday, March 26, 3-4pm ET and you can register to join in the conversation at


My last update for the month concerns the Architecture Billings Index (ABI)After consecutive months of contracting demand for design services, there was a modest up tick in the ABI. The January ABI score was 50.4, up from a mark of 48.5 in December. This score reflects an increase in design services (any score above 50 indicates an increase in billings). The full report is also available to read here.

I hope to hear your ideas about our programs and events, so please contact me anytime and I hope to see you at an AIA Michigan event in 2014!
New Members!

Welcome to our new members who joined, rejoined or transferred to 

AIA Michigan in January 2014:


Mary E. Brayton, AIA; Claude J. Faro, AIA; Jason R. Goff, Assoc. AIA; Robert S. Hewer, AIA; Christine E. Hiltz, Assoc. AIA; Ashley  Leger, Assoc. AIA; Stephanie  L. McDannel, Assoc. AIA; Misty Raatz, Assoc. AIA; James F. Stephen, AIA; Yukun Xu, Assoc. AIA


Welcome to AIA Michigan and we look forward to meeting you at future events!!
Continuing Education Calendar: Call for Information!
State mandated changes have brought Continuing Education to the forefront of our focus this year and we are calling on all AIA Michigan Local Chapters for help! In order to create a comprehensive continuing education calendar for all chapters to use as a resource, we need your chapter to send us a basic continuing education schedule, including: 
  • Date and title of event
  • Estimated hours of continuing education (indicate HSW or LU)
  • Cost associated with the event (if applicable) 
We are currently compiling a general schedule now, but we need all chapters to participate to make this calendar a comprehensive and effective resource. Send your chapter's schedule to today!

The majority of AIA Michigan programs maintain a consistent continuing education component, but the exact hours and details will receive special focus in our publications this year. Keep an eye out for upcoming event announcements and remember that the AIA Michigan Website Calendar is available 24/7! The website calendar is updated weekly with continuing education events available across the state and even online. To add your event to our calendar, simply email
AIA Sustainability Leadership Opportunity Scan: January 2014 Update
AIA 2014 Sust Scan
AIA National has disseminated a summary update of activities related to the implementation of the AIA Sustainability Leadership Opportunity Scan.
There's some early progress to report with much more to do that could bring measurable value to the profession, our clients and communities with the right combination of resources and focus.
The update focus areas include: Communications, Energy, Materials, Design & Health, Resilience, AIA Network and Resourcing, and Scan Phase 2. If you would like to read the summary, click here.
The Grapevine
  • Carl Roehling, FAIA, president & CEO of SmithGroupJJR, has been appointed to serve on the Joint Committee of the AIA and The Associated General Contractors of America (AGC). Roehling is also the 2014 Chair of the Mid Summer Conference committee, which is a collaboration of the AIA Michigan and the AGC of Michigan. To read the press release, click here.
  • Kraemer Design Group, PLC has hired four new team members, including Laurie Frey Borer, AIA as a Project Architect. Congrats, Laurie!
  • ROSSETTI has announced that Jonathon Disbrow, AIA, has been elevated to Associate of the firm by the Board of Directors. Congratulations, Jonathon! 
  • ROSSETTI also annouced the hiring of Andrew Rudnycky, AIA, as Senior Technical Designer, Tom Stecker, AIA, as Technical Design Lead, and Bruno Lanni, Associate AIA, as Intermediate Designer.
  • Visbeen Architects Inc., firm of Wayne Visbeen, AIA, won six "Best in American Living Awards" at the National Association of Home Builders' annual convention and exposition in Las Vegas held earlier this month. View the full press release here. 

  • Gabe Alvey, AIA, is now with Diekema Hamann Architecture + Engineering and can be reached at

  • Ed Pocock, AIA, is now at SmithGroupJJR and can be reached at Kristina Glusac, AIA, has also moved to SmithGroupJJR and can be reached at

  • Kathryn (Kathy) Lesniak passed away this month. Lesniak was the former President of the Michigan state association of the Women's Architectural League (WAL). She and husband John Lesniak, PA, were frequent Mid Summer Conference attendees and friends of many AIA Michigan members.

If you have changed firms, won an award, or have something to tell AIA Michigan, 

please email!

CEPR Chair Position Now Available!
The Center for Emerging Professionals Resources (CEPR) plans events and programs for emerging professionals across the state, including A.R.E. seminars, firm tours and happy hours and other events open to all levels of membership. 

The CEPR currently has an open position for Committee Chair. If you feel strongly about getting involved with your fellow emerging professionals and have ideas for fun and engaging activities, contact Christine for details about joining this seriously fun group of members!
Upcoming Events

- March 5, 2014: Legislative Day (in partnership with AESLC), Lansing

- March 20-21, 2014: AIA Michigan Health Facilities Planning Seminar, Traverse City

Is there something new you want us to know about you or your firm? 
Is there an event or project you want to share with the AIA Michigan Membership?
Email and check out our calendar for the latest events!