August 10, 2020 / Member News

Now Accepting Nominations for Regional Representative to the AIA Strategic Council

Step into an AIA leadership role by joining the AIA Strategic Council. One of the two Middle Atlantic Representative positions has opened.

The Strategic Council advances the profession by informing the Board of Directors and other Institute bodies of important professional issues and opportunities. The Council is charged with surveying the profession to identify opportunities and threats and engaging in strategic planning to inform the goals, objectives, and strategies of AIA. The Council was instrumental in the preparation of the AIA 2016-2020 Strategic Plan, approved by the Board of Directors.
The Strategic Council is tasked with ideation/research/generative thought-based activities. It is an outward-focused, forward-thinking, and member-centric group.

Much of the Council’s activity throughout the year is considered “blue-sky” thinking – searching for new ideas and solutions to relevant topical subject matter facing the profession. In this capacity, there is an element of futurist thinking as well. Collaborations entail visionary thought and ideation, deliberations, prototyping of ideas, and consensus-building. The Council develops ideas to inform future needs or opportunities for the profession and presents those ideas to the AIA Board for consideration, alignment, and potentially, its support.
Those seeking election to the Council as representatives from their regions are encouraged to be innovative and open-minded and have experience in ideation; be strong communicators and connect with their constituents; and embody a collaborative, partnering spirit.
Regional Representatives to the AIA Strategic Council are elected through their respective regions to serve a three-year term. (Other Councilors serve one- or two-year terms, depending on their position.)

Councilors are required to be energetic and able to provide significant volunteer hours per week.
The Council meets face-to-face at least twice a year, in addition to teleconferences. Council meetings are known as “Assemblies.” AIA funds attendance at these Assemblies and events outside of the regional travel funding (see below).
Sample Assembly Schedule:
December: Orientation and meetings with Board and Council during Governance Week in Washington, DC (generally the first week of December)
March: Grassroots Leadership Conference (generally in March)
In addition to the Assemblies noted above, Councilors attend the AIA Conference on Architecture (AIA Convention), and a summer Work Group session (see below).

The Council’s structure also includes a variety of standing committees (Steering, Strategic Planning, and Best Practices), to which Councilors are assigned on an annual basis. Councilors may also be appointed to an AIA Board Committee (see below).

Work Groups
Council members are required to participate in a Work Group which studies issues deemed relevant by the Council at that time. Work Groups generally meet via hour-long teleconferences once a month, as well as at the Council’s scheduled face-to-face meetings. The Work Group selects one or more members of the group to serve as a convener/leader, who is responsible for reporting for the group and coordination with the moderator and the other Work Groups.

AIA Board Committees
Councilors may also be appointed to AIA Board Committees (Equity and the Future of Architecture, Finance, and Audit, Government Advocacy, Knowledge, Public Outreach, or Secretary’s Advisory). These committees meet in Washington, DC, in February, and may have another face-to-face meeting as well as monthly teleconferences.

Other Opportunities
Councilors may be asked to serve on task forces to work on a specific and short-term project such as organizing for an event or upcoming meeting or dealing with a timely issue.

Specific Roles of Regional Representatives
Regional Representatives are encouraged to attend component meetings within their region, to engage with membership, solicit input on relevant issues, and understanding current concerns. In addition, these engagements are opportunities for Councilors to report to members on the activities and progress of the Council.

Each region may have additional requirements for its regional representatives (for example, those from single state regions may be required to attend the Large States meetings).

AIA provides a regional travel stipend that varies by region. Regional travel funding should only be used for travel expenses incurred for attendance at the region’s annual meeting and/or statewide component meetings within your region.

Interested in serving on the Council?
Supportive of AIA values promoting social equity, and inclusion, the Council strives to include (and encourages regions to consider as they elect future representatives) a diverse array of men and women who represent a variety of ethnicities, and practice, and includes both small and large firm practitioners, educators, component (CACE) representatives, students, young architects, and other individuals brought on to the Council as deemed necessary to best carry out the Council’s mission.

If interested, please reach out to Kathleen Lane or Matthew Ormsby, AIA.