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AIA Michigan Newsletter
July 2013 

In This Issue
President's Message and Executive Director's Message
Chapter Focus: AIA Northern Michigan
Chapter Focus: AIA Northern Michigan Board Member
The Grapevine
New Members!
AIAMI CEPR Tour at Blu Homes!
Upcoming Events
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President's Message:
Tamara Burns reduced retouched

Dear Members,


Last month, I traveled to Denver to join our fellow members at the AIA Convention. The general sessions are always terrific and this year especially so. Congratulations to AIA Denver, AIA Colorado and the national staff for a successful convention!


Optimism and the need to be "of service" were the reoccurring themes throughout the convention. We started out with updates on the AIA repositioning initiative. Some of it we have heard before - the public likes and respects architects but doesn't have a clue what we do or the impact we make. Some of what we heard was new - there will be an Emerging Professionals summit this fall (stay tuned) and an Inclusion Study has been started which will come out next spring.


Tod Williams Billie Tsien & Associates Architects were honored with the AIA firm of the year. Their philosophy is based on seeing "architecture as an act of profound optimism". It makes me proud to be a member of the AIA with this kind of firm receiving one of our top honors!


We had three inspiring, amazing and very different key note speakers. The first was Blake Mycoskie who started Tom's Shoes and subsequently the "One for One" movement. He wrote a book recently called Start Something That Matters. He stresses that Philanthropy and Profit can work together. Please read his book, buy his shoes (and now sunglasses!), check out his story and learn how giving can be a great strategy.


Cameron Sinclair was the second keynote. He is the co-founder and CEO (Chief Eternal Optimist) for Architecture for Humanity which "seeks architectural solutions to humanitarian crises and brings professional design services to communities in need".   It is hard to capture in a few sentences what he spoke about and what Architecture for Humanity does. It touches communities all over the world which have suffered from disasters and uses design to create lasting change in underserved communities. There are two wonderful books about this organization and its mission: Design Like You Give A Damn: Architectural Responses To Humanitarian Crises and the follow up Design Like You Give a Damn [2]: Building Change from the Ground Up.


The third speaker was General Colin Powell. He was engaging and humorous as he urged us (okay, maybe ordered us...) to believe in ourselves, invest in ourselves and set expectations for ourselves. He of course has also written a book! It's called It Worked for Me: In Life and Leadership.


 The last thing I'll share from my experience at the convention is a quote from Wendell Berry, paraphrased by Billie Tsien which says "If we do good work we can join hands with those who came before and those who come after."


This is the time to join hands!



Tamara Burns signature  

Tamara E. L.Burns, AIA
Executive Director's Message:
Cathy Headshot 

Happy July to everyone, I hope you are enjoying your summer. We have a lot of great events coming up that I am excited about but this month I want to focus on providing the membership with a Repositioning update:


Starting on July 22, the AIA will conduct the first of its quarterly, virtual Town Halls for members to share the latest news about Repositioning in their home cities. It will also be an opportunity for the Institute to answer questions about current progress and initiatives surrounding Repositioning. You can access the virtual town halls here


Connect, Innovate, Engage, and Lead-the keywords that Repositioning takes as its early foundations-will be introduced by Robert Ivy, FAIA, Mickey Jacob, FAIA, and Tina Litteral, Hon. AIA during the first town hall. You can read a summary of each of those four focus areas here


The AIA Foresight Report for 2013 points to a lot of positive change taking place already in the profession-with "change" being the operative word. Key findings include the need, across all sectors, for adaptability in a fast-paced business environment and an optimistic outlook for today's architects in tomorrow's marketplace. Relevance wins the day for architecture firms-no matter what size. But, design innovation will determine the level of influence architects will ultimately have in this changing landscape. You can read the full report here 


Chapter Focus: AIA Northern Michigan

The AIA Northern Michigan chapter is on a summer meeting hiatus until September, but that does not mean that the chapter isn't busy with exciting events this year.


The chapter is providing design support for a mansion (constructed entirely of appliance boxes!) for the Traverse City Film Festival 2013 "Kids Fest". The mansion is based on the film, "Victor and the Secret of Crocodile Mansion" and the event runs July 30th through August 4th of 2013.


The Northern Michigan chapter has awarded a $1,000 scholarship to Elliot J. Evans of Suttons Bay. Evans will be attending the University of Michigan Taubman College of Architecture and Urban Planning this Fall.


Other chapter events include: hosting an AIA Marathon Day in October and providing design support and assistance for the Canstruction installation. The regular schedule of Lunch and Learns every month will resume in September and run continuously through June.

Meet your AIA Michigan Board Member from the Northern Michigan Chapter:


Mark Humitz headshotMark Humitz, AIA is a southeast Michigan native by way of Dearborn. He went to The University of Michigan for his Master of Architecture degree and continued to live in Ann Arbor for 13 years after his graduation. Mark has worked for a variety of small and medium-size firms in Detroit, Ann Arbor and now Traverse City.  He has worked on projects including residential renovations, new custom residential homes, university sports facilities, speculative office buildings, retail bank facilities and large regional malls. Mark has been married for 28 years and has two children: 23 year old son and a 21 year old daughter.


The Grapevine
  • Allegretti Architects' Laketown Residence project, (a 2013 AIAMI Design Award winner), is referenced in the article, "How to Build Houses that Don't Harm Michigan's 'Critical Dunes Areas'" on the Michigan Radio website. Click here to read the article.
  • Tracy Sweeney, AIA, was recently elected into Lawrence Technological University's Architectural Alumni Cabinet. The Cabinet is composed of nine regular members elected by alumni for three year terms.
  • Rocco Romano, AIA, Principal at TMP Architecture, is retiring mid-month (July) and can be reached at going forward.
  • Click here to read Tom Walsh's article: "SmithGroupJJR Has Been Designing Buildings in Detroit for 158 Years and Counting" in the Detroit Free Press. The article discusses the company's history and features Carl Roehling, FAIA and Jeff Hausman, AIA.
Jay Pettitt, FAIA: 1926-2013

Jay Pettitt photo Jay S. Pettitt, Jr., FAIA, died peacefully at his home on Crystal Lake on July 9, 2013. Heworked at Albert Kahn Associates from 1951 to 1988 and held many positions at the firm, including Vice President, Director of Architecture and was a principal of the firm. One of his most notable accomplishments was overseeing the replacement of the University of Michigan Hospital. He was active in AIA Michigan and served as President in 1967.


Through the years, Jay enjoyed many weekends sailing and downhill skiing with his family. He was an avid Michigan football fan and attended all home games for many years. He is survived by his children, J. Stuart Pettitt (Debbie), Laura Pettitt (Bob), Lynn Pettitt (Mike), Carol Friendly (Ian), seven wonderful grandchildren and his adorable great granddaughter. The family extends it thanks to the many friends and caregivers who supported Jay during his recent illness.


A memorial service will be held on August 5, 2013, at 11:00 am at the First Congregational Church U.C.C. of Benzonia. In lieu of flowers, memorial donations can be made to the Benzie County Animal Shelter, the Michigan Architectural Foundation or The Maples. The Bennett-Barz Funeral Home, in Beulah, is in charge of arrangements.

New AIA Michigan Members!
Welcome to our new members who joined, rejoined, or transferred to AIA Michigan in June 2013:


Nkiru W Agomuoh, Assoc. AIA; Mary L Bachelor, AIA; Mark T Gibbons, Assoc. AIA; Anastasia Kostrominova, Assoc. AIA; Alexander Kraus, Assoc. AIA; Elizabeth Kreska, Assoc. AIA; John P. Minear, AIA; Nicholas C. Seehafer, AIA; Rodney A. Vander Zand, AIA


Welcome to AIA Michigan and we look forward to meeting you at future events!!
AIA Michigan CEPR Tour and Happy Hour at Blu Homes in Ann Arbor!

Blu Homes CEPR tour 

Upcoming Events

- August 2, 2013: AIA Michigan CEPR Tour and Happy Hour at Blue Homes, Ann Arbor 

- August 8-10, 2013: AIA Michigan/AGC Mid Summer Conference, Mackinac Island

- September 20-21, 2013: AIA Michigan Design Retreat, Torch Lake
- October 25, 2013: AIA Michigan Annual Meeting Day
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!