Thomas Vonier is the president of America Institute of Architects (AIA). He is committed to motivating public demand for architecture. Tom puts the interests of members first before anything else and leads efforts that enhance public spaces and buildings as essential elements of the infrastructure in the country. The president has a track record of engaging the globe on the climatic challenges and urbanization, which advances values and programs at AIA in international settings. Tom’s practice is based in Washington, DC, and Paris. It aims at serving private and public clients with industrial operations all over the world.
Tom also works with municipalities to enhance security in the urban centers. He is also a board-certified security expert, and he has led research for US consulates and embassies. The research resulted in a new generation of design criteria and landmark solutions and recommendations to the Secretary of State. Tom received a presidential Design Award as a result of the Federal Triangle planning project that he undertook as an international advisor.
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Robert Ivy is the executive vice president and chief executive officer of the American Institute of Architects. The organization is a membership-based professional company. The primary focus of Ivy is in construction industries, building, and design. However, he encourages architects to look beyond their field. Ivy is a wise, warm, and soft-spoken man, who skillfully steers conversations on the innovation based on the history of urban planning in the United States and its relevance to architects. Robert believes that architecture has the potential to impact in several areas such as enhancing health and offering disaster relief solutions. AIA has been receiving attention in the recent months on issues outside design profession.
AIA recently announced about its commitment of ten years to design solutions and programs that focus on resiliency to natural disasters, public health, and sustainability in urban areas. The institution is offering support to university research with grants, as part of its commitment, which will work on a community plan in a major international city. However, the organization has not yet named the town. It will carry out an intensive hackathon to design a mobile application or other software projects. Robert is confident that architecture can affect the rate of non-communicable diseases such as heart disease and diabetes. He says that the objective can be achieved through constructing buildings designed to encourage exercise like constructing buildings that encourage the use of stairs. Besides, buildings should be built such that they can easily access clean water, sunlight and fresh air. Ivy adds that construction materials should promote welfare, public health, and safety.
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