Category Archives: Uncategorized

2015 AIANJ Service Award Nominations Open

serviceawardsBIGAIA-NJ annual Service Awards are given to recognize accomplishments of individuals and firms that have provided distinguishes service to the profession and to the Society. They are designed to focus on the accomplishments of members and non-members on issues of public awareness of the built environment, service to the community and other non-design aspects of Architecture.

Nominations for awardees are open for 2015 Service Award nominations –

Find out more information or applications at www.aia-nj.org

Pro Tour of Renewable Energy-Powered Houses

AIA-NJ member Alan Spector is hosting a tour of two houses – one his own – that use a combination of both passive and active renewable energy systems. The tour is on September 4 in Augusta and Lafayette, NJ. The tour is approved for 2.5 AIA LU|HSW.

WHERE: Lafayette, NJ 07848
WHEN: Friday, September 4, 2015 – 1:00pm to 5:30pm
COST: Member registration: $25 | Non-member registration: $35
CREDITS: 2.5 AIA LU/HSW (approved) and 2.5 GBCI (pending approval)

Click here for more information.

WORKING WITH THE MEDIA – Composing a Press Release

AIA-NJIn our year end review of the 2014 activities of the AIA New Jersey Public Awareness Committee, we asked you to stay tuned for tools that will help you make a splash in the press. Below is the third in a series of articles that will help you in that regard. With your help, we hope to be able to leverage our strength in numbers to help promote architects and architecture.

Our previous installments of Working with the Media discussed ways in which you, in a personal or professional context, can begin to build a bridge with the editorial staff of your local or regional publications. This included some strategies as to how to introduce yourself (and your expertise) to the outlet, along with a brief guide for writing an effective letter to the editor. These techniques are useful in positioning yourself as an architectural expert and a go-to source for future pieces related to development, construction, and design.

But, announcing news of your own requires a more deliberate structure of information. This is where a written announcement, usually referred to as a press release, comes in handy.

The logic behind a press release is that it provides detailed, accurate, and controlled dissemination of information. A well-composed press release lists each of the necessary factual elements of an announcement, leaving little room for speculation or supposition – the who, what, when, where and why. In today’s ultra-fast-paced digital news world, it’s an especially handy tool for providing a journalist with the nearly all of the information they’d need for a story – all in one neat package.

Ultimately, you’ll have to employ what you know about the interests of a particular media outlet to judge whether your announcement might be “newsworthy.” But, most press release announcements for architects fall into a few categories:

• Major contracts
• Awards
• Notable or innovative large-scale designs
• Anniversaries or other milestones
• Hiring, promotions, etc

Once you’ve decided to proceed with the press release, there are several rules of thumb that ensure that it’s well organized and digestible for a reporter:

Length: A press release is designed for efficiency; your release should rarely exceed 500 words, and a simple one-pager is usually preferable.
Messaging: The “inverted pyramid” model applies in press releases, which is to say that the most important points should appear first, while minutiae and contextual details should be included in the latter portions. For project-based announcements, latter paragraphs should reference building-specific information including size, cost, start date, finish date, function (program), owner, architect, contractor, funding source, project personnel, etc.
Structure: Each release should contain a headline, date, location, contact information, and boilerplate information about your company. Examples of suggested formats can be found here.
Voice: Press releases are written essentially as if they are news stories. Press releases should be based entirely on fact, written completely in the third person. In a previous entry in Working with the Media, we mentioned that press releases may, in some instances, be published as-is. A good litmus test is to read your press release and ask yourself if it could stand on its own as a news story.
Include a quote: Typically, press releases will include a quote from the issuer somewhere after the lead paragraph. This is your opportunity to provide more subjective insight and interpretation.

In future installments, we’ll be going more in-depth into how to finesse the language within your press releases and how to properly tailor your announcement to a variety of press outlets.

For more suggestions, refer to AIA Best Practices – Getting Good Press on the web at http://www.aia.org. Please note this is a password protected, member only website. Therefore, we cannot provide a direct link to the site for you. But you can find it under Practicing Architecture; Best Practices; Part 2 – Firm Management; Chapter 6: Marketing and Business Development. You might also find a lot of other beneficial material in this area of the website.

If you would like to read the previous articles in this series, please see the following links:

Building Relationships

Writing a Letter to the Editor

Kyle Kirkpatrick
Account Supervisor
Beckerman PR Real Estate Team

Bruce D. Turner, AIA
Chair, AIA New Jersey Public Awareness Committee

USGBC NJ – South Branch

USGBC-NJ_South_Branch_event-6-30-15

Architect’s League 2015 Scholarships

alnnjThe Architects League of Northern New Jersey, a section of AIA-NJ, is pleased to announce the following as recipients  of our 2015 Scholarship Awards.

The Architects League Scholastic Achievement Award is given to undergraduate & graduate students for scholastic excellence in architectural design.  This year’s recipient is  Tony Giard of Sussex, New Jersey.  Tony attends the New Jersey Institute of Technology and is expected to graduate in 2016.

The Architects League Scholarships for High School Seniors are awarded to High School Seniors who live or attend high school in our geographic territory (Bergen, Hudson, Passaic & Sussex Counties) and have been accepted to an NAAB Accredited Architecture Program at a college in the United States or U.S. Territory.  This year’s recipients are Alexander Mount of Old Tappan, New Jersey, and Jonathan Mazur of Wood-Ridge, NJ.  Alexander is a student at Northern Valley Regional High School and will be attending Pratt Institute in the fall.  Jonathan is a student at Wood-Ridge High School and will be attending Renssalaer Polytechnic Institute.

A ceremony to honor our Scholarship Award Winners will be held on June 18 at the Zeris Inn, Mountain Lakes, New Jersey.  The event will be held as part of the annual Design Awards, a joint event with AIA Newark and Suburban Architects.

The Architects League Scholarships are funded jointly through our annual Golf Outing, to be held on July 13 at Crystal Springs in Hamburg,  and the AIA Component Scholarship Grant, which in 2015 provided $1,000 toward these scholarships.

For more information on the Architects League Scholarship Program, visit http://alnnj.org/wordpress/scholarships/

NJIT Students Win Global Schindler Award

Students Fundraising To Support Travel Costs To Accept Award

Eleven NJIT students in the Master of Infrastructure Planning (MIP) program (a mix of undergraduates and graduate students) led by Georgeen Theodore recently were acknowledged for a Global Schindler Award, a design competition seeking an original design concept to engage the specific spatial condition in Shenzhen, China “Considering the Interface between Mobility and the City”.

The task was to create an urban design-based response to the mobility issues related to Shenzhen and its local and regional relationships in the pearl River Delta. It also required addressing social, economic and environmental challenges presented by globalization and urbanization.

This was the first time in the history of the competition that it was opened for North American universities. Out of the 250 total submissions, only 12 were chosen. Of those twelve, the group form NJIT is the only U.S. based team. They are planning to travel to Shenzhen to accept the award and see the site that was the focus of their design project.

njit_coadThe students seek to raise an additional $5000 to help offset their costs. Any monies collected will be spent on air-fare, trains, hotels and visa applications. The cost per individual student to travel to China is expected to be in excess of $2,000 each.

Their project was titled

SEZ TO EZX: SHENZHEN XROADS

You can read more about their project and fundraising efforts here.

Quinn de Menna, AIA Appointed to AIA Design for Aging (DFA) Advisory Group

de-Menna_QuinnAIA-West Jersey would like to announce the appointment of Quinn de Menna, AIA to the AIA Design for Aging (DFA) Advisory Group. The eight (8) member national leadership board advocates for innovative design and shares research findings with professionals via the AIA DFA Knowledge Community, to promote quality of life and superior environments for an aging society. Quinn de Menna, AIA is currently Director of Architecture at Alberto & Associates, Inc. located in Haddonfield, NJ, and a frequent attendee of AIA-WJ sponsored events. Mr. de Menna has participated in efforts such as the AIA Design For Aging ADA Task Force and presented at national Senior Living Conferences including LeadingAge Annual Meeting, American Society on Aging, Pioneer Network and others; on topics ranging from Dining Trends to Accessible Toileting and Bathing. AIA-WJ is honored to have one of its members represented on this national board.

AIA-DFA has recently issued a Call for Entries for its 2015 AIA Design for Aging Review. This program, a joint effort of the AIA and LeadingAge, includes a juried exhibition, a companion book, and education programs. The program encompasses a broad view of facilities designed for senior citizens, including nursing homes, dementia care, assisted living, and continuing care retirement communities.

The Design for Aging Review seeks not only to demonstrate architectural design trends and recognize excellence but also to serve as a reference for providers, developers, users, advocates, architects, and other design professionals in this growing market. Since the competition began in 1992, more than 300 facilities, domestic and international, have participated in the review.

AIA New Jersey members are encouraged to submit projects for recognition. Please visit the AIA-Design for Aging website here for full program details.

Presidents Message – AIANJ Update and Grassroots

Spring is almost here in New Jersey, I know many of us are looking forward to warmer temperatures and to see projects delayed by weather move forward.  Though it is only March a lot has been happening in the architecture community in NJ.

We were saddened this week to learn of the passing of two architects who impacted the architecture community in New Jersey.  Paul DeMassi, AIA, and Michael Graves, FAIA.  Graves took architecture and design beyond structures, whether it was a building, a chair or a toaster he taught that Design Matters.   Read more about his life.   DeMassi opened his firm in NJ in 1971, was a past president of NJ Society of Architects  (AIA-NJ) in 1981, and three term past chairman of the Joint Committee of the NJ State Board of Architects and Engineers.   Find out more information.  The AIA-NJ community if feeling a great loss by the absence of these two members.

aianj_GR15_senator

aiawj_GR15_congDuring the last snow storm here in the northeast, leaders from around the country, and a number of AIA-NJ members were in Washington DC for the Annual Grassroots Legislative and Leadership Conference.   Continue reading

Working With The Media – Writing a Letter to the Editor

AIA-NJIn our recent year end review of the 2014 activities of the AIA New Jersey Public Awareness Committee, we asked you to stay tuned for tools that will help you make a splash in the press. Below, is the second in a series of articles that will help you in that regard. With your help, we hope to be able to leverage our strength in numbers to help promote architects and architecture.

In the inaugural installment of our Working with the Media series, we discussed the process of familiarizing yourself with your local media landscape, including reporters and editors from various mainstream and trade outlets, and local community papers. We discussed a process called source filing, in which you, as an architect, establish yourself as a professional resource for future building and design-related stories that a journalist may be writing.

This is a necessary first step to making a splash in your local publication, but as a standalone measure, it leaves you in a passive position. Source filing vastly increases your chances of being contacted by a reporter when they need a source, but what if you want to proactively offer your expertise to the media?

Without pitching a story to a local reporter, it’s still possible to get published through a simple letter to the editor. A letter should be short – ideally less than 300 words – addressed to a newspaper or website’s editorial staff regarding a specific story or pertinent trend. Once you’ve identified the correct email or mailing address for the editor (usually located on the ‘Opinions’ or ‘Letters’ page), it’s time to get started on your letter.

As you’re writing your letter, keep in mind a few key points:

  • Keep it (somewhat) formal: Begin your letter with a proper salutation and thoroughly check it for spelling, grammar, and unnecessary shorthand writing. The printed letter is a direct reflection of you as a professional!
  • Send it electronically: While sending a physical letter is a novel idea, you greatly increase your chances of being published if you email the letter. It’s far easier for busy editors to copy/paste a letter than to retype it.
  • Clearly state your position in the opening paragraph: Whether you’re responding to a recent article or commenting on a building or architectural issue, make sure that you don’t bury your main point. In the first paragraph, be sure to plainly state your stance in relation to the story or subject.
  • Don’t (always) have a bone to pick: The tendency for many is to write a letter to the editor only when they are upset or opposed to something that a reporter has written. In fact, letters to the editor can be laudatory of a reporter, fellow architect, development project – anything! In fact, as long as you’re offering a fresh perspective, staying positive is a great way to solidify your relationship with the publication in the early stages of your relationship.

Letters to the editor offer a unique opportunity for architects because they are not controlled by an editorial board or journalistic practices. They’re an opportunity to say something constructive, educational, or unique about architecture while solely owning the message. Best of luck and happy writing!

For more suggestions, refer to AIA Best Practices – Getting Good Press on the web at www.aia.org. Please note this is a password protected, member only website. Therefore, we cannot provide a direct link to the site for you. But you can find it under Practicing Architecture; Best Practices; Part 2 – Firm Management; Chapter 6: Marketing and Business Development. You might also find a lot of other beneficial material in this area of the website.

If you would like to read the previous article in this series, please click here.

If you would like to see a sample Letter to the Editor, please click here.

Kyle Kirkpatrick
Account Supervisor
Beckerman PR Real Estate Team

Bruce D. Turner, AIA
Chair, AIA New Jersey Public Awareness Committee

AIA Fellowship Workshop

red_eagleAIA New Jersey Members;

This year AIA New Jersey was successful in having two of its members elevated to Fellowship; Pamela Rew of KSS Architects in Princeton, and Joseph Tattoni of Ikon5 also of Princeton. We have begun to put in place a process to assist those who wish to apply for AIA Fellowship and hope to continue this year to build on this success.

Last year I was able to hold a series of seminars to discuss the process of applying for Fellowship, and it seems to have helped. As some of you know, I had the opportunity to serve on the AIA Jury of Fellows from 2008 to 2010 and I became very familiar with the jury selection process and what the Jury of Fellows are looking for in their deliberations. I will lead each of the two seminars outlined below and answer questions regarding the process, the jury, and the submission itself.

This message is to encourage those of you who might be considering applying for Fellowship to attend. Even if you may not be thinking about it in the immediate future, it may be helpful to attend to understand what sort of information you should be collecting and organizing in the interim, so that when you do apply, it will be an easier process.

To begin this effort I will conduct two identical seminars at locations around the state; the dates and meeting places are shown below. The seminars will be to meet potential candidates, help explain the process, discuss approaches and strategize how to work with them as they complete their applications. We now have a AIANJ standing Fellows Committee with members willing and able to help you in the submittal process. The seminar times and locations shown below will also be posted on the AIANJ website.

All individuals who are considering applying for Fellowship either now or in the future are urged to attend. 

Please call or e-mail me if you plan on attending, so I can get some idea of how many people we will have to accommodate. Thanks.

Allan Kehrt FAIA

 

There will be two seminars as follows:

Date:         March 17, 2015 at 5:00 pm
Location:   The offices of Clarke Caton Hintz
                    100 Barrack Street
                   Trenton, New Jersey
                   609-883-8383

Date:         March 18, 2015 at 5:00 pm
Location:   New Jersey Institute of Technology
                    AIA Room, School of Architecture
                   Newark, New Jersey
                   973-596-3079

RSVP:            Allan Kehrt FAIA cell: 609-240-1364
                         e-mail: [email protected]

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