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AIA Newark and Suburban Architects

MAY 2012 Issue 5

A Section of AIA New Jersey AIA New Jersey is a Chapter and Region of the American Institute of Architects

Rostrum 2012 President’s Message Inside this issue: President’s Message


Practice Notes


Roundtable Report


Regional Director’s Message


Save the Date - N&S Design Awards


IDP Competition


Our Sponsors


The Rostrum  Official newsletter of the Newark & Suburban Section of AIA-NJ  Published monthly  Submit events, case studies, photos, comments, or other content for consideration to:

I would like to thank Joe Flock, AIA for coordinating this year’s Roundtable event discussing Construction Trends for 2012 and beyond. As always, Joe’s discussion topic and probing questions of the panelists inspired the audience and kindled thought provoking questions about the future of our industry. Many ideas were brought forward, but one I thought applied to all was the fact that we no longer do business in the same manner we did 10 or even 5 years ago. The ability to operate faster, smarter and accurately for our clients is required of everyone at each level of the profession. That said, we need to stay on top of ever changing current events in our industry material pricing trends, advances in technology, building code updates - now

May is

more than ever before. Accomplishing this is difficult when we are all tasked with a full time job of providing “client delight” to those clients we currently serve. That is why I think the AIA is invaluable. The networking and information shared among professionals within the AIA is a real asset for its members. Our Roundtable in April was a perfect example. I encourage Newark and Suburban members to attend our meetings not only to learn from a featured speaker, but also from each other. Coming up in May is the AIA National Convention in Washington, DC. This is another great opportunity to not only receive continuing education credits from the extensive amount of seminars offered, but also to meet with seasoned professionals from around

the country, learn best practices, and broaden your perspective of our industry. Lastly, I especially encourage our Emerging Professionals to engage in programs, events, and continuing education that the AIA offers. It is an important time for the rising talent in our industry to seek the benefits of interacting with senior members. I invite the Newark and Suburban Emerging Professionals to attend our New Members / Emerging Professionals Party on May 10th - see the Newark and Suburban website for more information. It will be a great opportunity to meet new people and learn more about what the AIA can do for you. Kevin McCormick, LEED®AP AIANS President, 2012


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AIA Newark & Suburban Board Members

Officers KEVIN McCORMICK, AIA President LOUISE ADDONIZIO, AIA President-Elect JOHN A. CWIKLA, AIA First Vice President LISA SAN FILIPPO, AIA Secretary STEPHEN ROONEY, AIA Treasurer YOGESH MISTRY, AIA Past President


Honorary Affiliate  DAN BISCHOFF

Section Administrator JULIE PAGNOTTA AIA NS 2012 Committees

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Professional Practice Notes - Apples and Oranges Apple Computer continues to dominate the news, financial markets and cocktail party conversations. This fact is not surprising since six months after the passing of its iconoclast founder, Steve Jobs; Apple remains the world’s most valuable brand and the most valuable company. For this month’s AIANS column I felt compelled to look outside our profession to seek inspiration and ideas from Apple that may be applied to architectural practices. Some may say it is comparing “apples and o rang e s, ” to e xp lo re corporate themes for application to small or midsized design firms. It is, but that is the point in this case. Walter author

Isaacson of the

is the recent

bestselling biography titled “Steve Jobs.” I recommend the book for those who want to get the life story of Mr. Jobs and insight into the companies and industries that he shaped, as well as, his unusual personal story. For a shorter read focused on business practices, Mr. Isaacson has recently published an article titled “The Real Leadership Lessons of Steve Jobs” in the April issue of The Harvard Business Review

to do is as important as deciding what to do…” It is noted that focus was ingrained in Jobs’s personality from his Zen training and he had an uncanny ability to filter out distractions. At annual leadership retreats he would have his topic executives come up with long lists of what they should do next then he would announce, “We can only do three.” Challenging yourself and your staff to focus on the core clients, projects and services can elevate your practice and yield results.

Several of the key attributes of Jobs that are highlighted by Isaacson can be applied to a n y b u s ine s s or profession. Consider the following three:

SIMPLIFY - Apple’s first marketing brochure included Leonardo da Vinci’s famous quote, “Simplicity is the ultimate sophistication.” We

FOCUS - “Deciding what not

Continued on page 6

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2012 AIANS ROUNDTABLE EVENT “MARKET TRENDS FOR 2012 & BEYOND” A SUCCESS April 25th was the time and McCloones Boathouse in West Orange, NJ was the place for AIA Newark Suburban’s 13th Annual Industry Roundtable Discussion general membership meeting. The four panelists, all experts in their field, offered diverse perspectives on trends in the Design, Construction, Residential and Commercial Real Estate Industry to the 80 plus members in attendance. After opening remarks by AIANS President, Kevin McCormick, AIA, Joseph N. DiVincenzo Jr., current Essex County Executive addressed those in attendance. His remarks focused on details of the development of this exciting new venue as well as noting the importance of our organization. Joe Flock, AIANS Past President and Chair of the event since its inception in 1999, then introduced the speakers. They included: George Molloy, SIOR, an experienced senior level commercial real estate service provider since 1983

with a proven track record of success, walked us through updates on the NJ commercial real estate industry. Carlo Siracusa, Manager, Weichert Realtors Morris County office, focused on where the residential real estate market has been and is headed. Michael Dorin, Senior V.P. of Skanska Preconstruction for the NY Metro Region spoke on current trends in the construction industry David DelVecchio, AIA, a long time member of the AIA, having held leadership positions at local, state and national levels spoke to how o ur o rg anization can leverage trends mentioned at the meeting. Topics discussed included how the market, our clients and our profession can approach Adaptive Reuse, Rapid Deployment Centers, Sustainability, and Speed to Market to help “make a niche for yourself” starting in 2012. “This is the 4th largest commercial/ industrial/ retail market in North America and

Joseph N. DiVincenzo, Essex County Executive, (second from right) accepts Certificate of Appreciation from (L to R) Michael Hanrahan, AIA, Joe Flock, AIA, DiVincenzo and Kevin McCormick, AIA, 2012 Newark Suburban President

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there is a fair amount of functional obsolescence in the built inventory we need to be able to leverage for our clients,” noted George Molloy, as he updated trends in the commercial market. “We must understand the needs of different generations in the residential home buying markets,” Carlo Siracusa stressed to our membership. Mike Dorin’s comments mirrored those of Dave DelVecchio when he advised, “Raw materials cost in c re a se s h a ve been absorbed by our subcontractors till now, but if you’re future casting, that cannot continue much longer.” Questions from members in attendance targeted panelists’ perspectives on trends in the residential real estate industry and how the election year results could impact them. “There is money in the market,” noted all panelists. “The outcome of political events will hopefully drive more capital & lending to further stimulate real estate, design and construction activity.”

Joe Flock, AIA (standing, left) introduces the Annual Roundtable panelists at McCloone’s Boathouse, West Orange, NJ: George Molloy, Carlo Siracusa, Michael Dorin, and David DelVecchio, AIA, seated

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AIA Newark & Suburban Links


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As many of you know (and this especially goes for Michael Hanrahan, AIA, OUR immediate Past President who absolutely knows that over the last few (or more) years I have certainly talked and even written about getting older), my four decades of continuing membership in OUR organization is very special to me. My so called badge of longevity is almost front and center of everything relating to my home section of Newark and Suburban Architects and more re ce ntl y, OUR AI AN J Chapter/Region of the Institute. In fact, in my position in representing you the member on the National Board of Directors, I think that I can safely state that I have the longest tenure of membership in our organization among the fifty plus members of esteemed leadership.

Under the current Bylaws, Architect members are eligible for Emeritus status if they have been members in good standing for 15 successive years and are at least 65 years old. Under the proposed amended Bylaws, the 15 years of continued membership applies, but members will have to be retired from practice and now have to wait until age 70!

I must mention here that my good friend Joseph Flock, AIA, always reminds me “that age is only a state of mind: If you don’t state it, I don’t mind!” At my age I was looking forward to becoming an Emeritus Member, and am a bit disappointed that I will just h a v e t o w a i t another……………never mind, I won’t state how many more years!

Now you may ask why change the eligibility criteria, or to quote Al Pacino from Godfather 3, “just as I was ready to get out………….they pull me back in again!” Well the answer to that question is three fold: Continuity: with a longer life expectancy, the period of active professional life has extended as well, so the change simply reflects that demographic. Consistency: The change would align the Emeritus status with the requirements of many state licensing boards with the emphasis on retirement from practice a key criterion. Fairness: Those whose livelihoods are derived from active professional practice benefit from Institute programs and they should continue to contribute to our ability to provide those programs for as long as they benefit.

The proposed By-Law to be voted on at the AIA Convention, which you all should be attending this month, since it is in Washington, DC, has made some of OUR ‘older members’ young again! Here is what is being proposed:

You should not worry if you are already an Emeritus member but not 70 years old, because your Emeritus status remains. What is most important to understand is that OUR s t r e n g th is in OUR membership. Critical to that strength is our ability to

engage emerging professionals while retaining the experience of prior generations. If our membership retires and disengages, OUR position as an industry leader will certainly suffer. We must afford all members a meaningful opportunity to remain engaged, and encourage them to do so, for as long as possible. Lastly, a substantial portion of OUR membership are employed in various alternative careers which do not fit into any workable definition of the “profession of architecture” we could ever realistically create. Therefore, in order to p ro v id e an o b je c ti ve benchmark that will apply to all members equally irrespective of their form of employment or practice; we must employ a measure that focuses on an objective principle that is common to all members. Though I am sure Michael will try to remind me of my age, I will now just state that I am an older member who by virtue of the passing of this proposed Bylaw is young again! Please join me at OUR annual Convention and help me celebrate what Jerry Larson, Sr. AIA has always called me……’Jerry the younger’! Jerome Leslie Eben, AIA AIANJ Regional Director 2011-13

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Save the Date - N/S Design Awards 2012 The Design Awards Committee is pleased to announce that the 2012 AIA Newark and Suburban Design Awards will be held Thursday evening, October 11 at the Hamilton and Ward Steakhouse in Paterson. Our Section’s 19th annual Awards will be a special joint event held in collaboration with the Architects League of Northern New Jersey.

Submitted projects from both Sections will be juried together during the afternoon of October 11 before the awards presentations in the evening. We would like to thank all the member firms that have participated in the Design Awards in recent years, as the success of the event depends on me m b e r participation. As always we

welcome first-time entrants and encourage firms that may not have not entered recently to come back and join the growing ranks of member firms that make participating part of their yearly AIA calendar. Please visit the AIANS web site for all Design Awards submission information as well as digital files of the 2011 entries and event photographs.

Page 5 Be sure to mark October 11 on your calendar for the opportunity to see the work that our member firms are proud to present while enjoying live music and delicious food and drink in the company of your AIA colleagues. Contact Donald Chin, AIA Design Awards Chairperson

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IDP DESIGN COMPETITION Participate in a design competition and get IDP cre d it ! The P ro je c t, sponsored by AIA San Fernando Valley: prepare the schematic design of a multifamily, affordable project. Prizes : $1,000 for first place, $700 for second place, $300 for third place, and 2 honorable mentions worth $100 each. The competition is open to all NCARB/IDP participants. Submission can be individuals or teams.


Credit for IDP hours is available to all participants working with a mentor and each participant will be responsible for self-reporting hours as detailed in the IDP Guidelines. Competition fees and deadlines are available here.

Winning entries will be displayed at the 26th AIA San Fe r n and o V al le y Installation and Design Awards Banquet and will also appear on the AIASFV section’s website.

Practice Notes Continued from page 2 all know that the game changing Apple product lines are known for their simple and bold designs, as is the architecture of the wildly successful Apple stores. Aesthetics aside, pursuing clear and simple solutions to complex design and practice challenges can help your firm stand out. KNOW BOTH THE BIG PICTURE AND THE DETAILS – “One of Jobs’s salient traits was his ability and desire to envision overarching strategy while

also focusing on the tiniest aspects of design.” Architects are generally known as very good problem solvers, and we often must juggle complex issues in our businesses as well as on projects. Scattered as it may seem, routinely shifting back and forth between broad ideas and small details is a healthy approach to embrace in practice. Next month I plan to return inside the architectural profession and report on a practice topic closer to home. For now I close with a Stewart Brand Whole Earth Catalog quote that Steve Jobs embraced…”Stay Hungry, Stay Foolish.” Author: Ronald C. Weston, AIA, LEED AP BD+C, / AIA NS Professional Practice Committee Chair / Email:

Rostrum 2012

These companies generously sponsor our Section

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Rostrum May 2012  

AIA Newark & Suburban Section monthly newsletter

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