PresidentCatherine Baker, AIA
Catherine Baker, AIA, is a partner at Landon Bone Baker Architects. The focus of work at the firm is affordable housing and community-based design. At LBBA, Catherine manages various projects including master planning of neighborhoods, new and renovated single-family housing, multifamily housing and daycare centers. Catherine is active in Chicago's architectural educational community-focused programs, mainly on CPS high school students. She also runs the office's summer lab program which employs high school students to initiate change in their neighborhood through environmental assessment studies and community asset mapping. Catherine also serves on the Board of Directors at the Chicago Asthma Consortium where she is coordinating efforts between health experts, builders, developers, and architects to design healthier living environments.
First Vice President/President-ElectRobert Forest, FAIA
Robert Forest, FAIA, is a founding partner at Adrian Smith + Gordon Gill Architecture, where he leads the management of all of the firm's projects. A recognized authority on the economics of sustainable design, Bob has lectured and published widely on "best practices" for the management of high-performance architecture. He is the chairperson of the AIA Chicago Large Firm Round Table Committee, a member of the US Green Building Council, and the China Committee of the Chicago Sister Cities program. Prior to co-founding AS+GG in 2006, Bob was an Associate Partner in the Chicago office of Skidmore, Owings & Merrill, and had previously worked at design firms in Toronto, Hong Kong and Osaka, Japan.
Past-PresidentMatthew Dumich, FAIA
Matthew Dumich, FAIA, is a Senior Architect and Project Manager at Adrian Smith + Gordon Gill Architecture. A skilled team leader and consensus builder, he is known for his collaborative design approach and ability to execute complex, high-performance projects.
Matt is committed to serving the profession by heightening the visibility of architects, communicating the value of design, and connecting the architectural community. Matt is co-founder of Bridge, a leadership program that pairs young architects with experienced FAIA mentors. Currently in its eighth season, this nationally recognized program has formed lasting mentoring relationships and developed over 100 emerging architect leaders.
Matt has been honored locally and nationally for his outstanding leadership and service with the 2013 AIA National Young Architects Award, 2012 AIA Chicago Dubin Family Young Architect Award and 2011 Building Design + Construction 40 Under 40 award.
VP AdvocacyBrett Taylor, AIA
Brett Charles Taylor, AIA, is a Director at bKL Architecture. He has led numerous complex, multi-disciplinary teams for the Federal/Civic sector such as the EM Dirksen Courthouse renovation and the United Nations Geneva Campus renovation. He has also spent over 10 years working in the MENA region managing projects and developments in countries including Saudi Arabia, Jordan, Bahrain, United Arab Emirates, and Qatar.
Brett is recipient of the AIA National Young Architect Award, a former member of the AIA National Young Architects Advisory Committee, and former chair of the AIA Chicago Young Architects Knowledge Community. He is currently a board member of the Art Institute of Chicago Evening Associates and a volunteer for the Rebuilding Together organization.
VP SponsorshipApril Hughes, AIA
April Hughes, AIA, the 2013 AIA Illinois and AIA Chicago Dubin Family Young Architect of the Year, is the owner and Managing Principal of HPZS, a full service woman-owned architectural firm specializing in combating climate change through adaptive reuse in order to “Preserve a Sustainable Future” for Chicago. She is a recent recipient of the DuPont Emerging Leader Scholarship at the 2016 Design Futures Council Leadership Summit on Sustainable Design, is a U.S. Small Business Administration Emerging Leader 2016, and is a 2017 Goldman Sachs 10,000 Small Businesses Scholar and advocates for women in the profession at all levels, from intern to executive.
VP Honors & AwardsCraig Brandt, AIA
Craig Brandt, AIA, engages in the processes of conceptualizing complex problems and developing award winning public projects of multiple scales and contexts for HBRA Architects and as Principal, has directed significant public projects in the Institutional, Academic, and Government sectors. During his involvement in AIA Chicago, he has served as committee chair and juror for the AIA design committee engaging in activities that advocate for design excellence. He has served as Adjunct Professor at the University of Wisconsin, Milwaukee where his students projects engage relevant urban issues, and has shared his insight as a lecturer and guest design critic at several institutions. He was the recipient of the AIA Chicago Dubin Family Young Architect Award in 2009, and is a member of the Society of Fellows at the American Academy in Rome.
SecretaryJessica Figenholtz, AIA
As Higher Education Leader at Perkins+Will, Jessica is focused on enhancing educational experiences and outcomes in the rapidly evolving education landscape. She believes in developing innovative strategies that creatively integrate design, business and learning environments. Jessica is a widely-recognized expert in higher education design with more than 15 years of professional experience. She has developed long-term relationships with some of the world's top higher education institutions.
Known for her agility in operating within multiple practice areas, including higher education, K-12, retail, and commercial interiors, Jessica is regarded for her thorough understanding of the client and project context. She is deeply involved in planning, redevelopment, and sustainability - and believes that design should deliver impact, create value and transform lives for today's learner and future generations to come.
TreasurerJennifer Park, AIA
Jennifer Park, AIA, is principal and owner of Jurassic Studio, a design firm that enjoys exploring form, patterns, composition and their translation into our social context. Her professional experience in architecture, design and education spans cities such as New York, Los Angeles, Chicago and Richmond, and her project experience spans academic, commercial, retail and residential settings. Park maintains close ties to academia currently serving as an adjunct professor at the School of the Art Institute (SAIC) and Illinois Institute of Technology (IIT) teaching architecture studio courses. Jennifer is a member of the museum and exhibition design team for the Obama Presidential Center.
In addition to several project awards, Jennifer was acknowledged as one of Chicago's 2015 Women of Influence in Michigan Avenue magazine and was a finalist for Curbed's 2015 Young Guns Award recognizing rising talent in the fields of architecture and development. She also is a recipient of the 2015 Burnham Prize and a 2017 Burnham Prize exhibitor hosted by the Chicago Architectural Club in affiliation with the Chicago Architecture Biennial.
DirectorPatricia Saldaña Natke, AIA
Patricia Saldaña Natke, AIA, is President and Design Principal of UrbanWorks, an award-winning architecture, planning, and interior design firm, wherein she is responsible for the visionary design direction of the firm. Pat has a passion for cities, neighborhoods, and especially the most vulnerable sections of cities and their population.
Pat has served as an Adjunct Professor at the University of Illinois at Chicago Graduate School of Architecture, Facilitator at Archeworks, and a Part Time Professor at the Illinois Institute of Technology School of Architecture for the Advanced Design Studios. She was named one of “Five 2014 Emerging Designers” in Crain’s Chicago, listed in “50 Designers Shaping Chicago” by NewCity in 2014, and named “2015 Outstanding Woman” by Chicago’s largest Spanish newsmedia La Raza. In 2016, Pat was a TEDX University of Chicago speaker.
DirectorLaura Garcia, AIA, LEED AP, NCARB
Laura Garcia, AIA, LEED AP, NCARB founded Laura Garcia Design in 2010 after nearly 20 years of experience in the commercial architectural world. Her small firm focuses on residential and small commercial projects in the Chicago area and beyond, and is dedicated to exceptional client service and design. Laura is the current co-chair of AIA Chicago's Small Practitioners Group, and is a past chair and active presenter of the Working With an Architect /Ask an Architect program. She is also a past chair of the SPG's DOB committee, and currently serves on the broader AIA Chicago DOB committee, which meets regularly with the Commissioner's office.
DirectorWilliam Emmick, AIA
William Emmick, AIA, is a Principal leading design management at Studio Gang. With more than a decade of experience at Studio Gang, William oversees projects ranging in scale and typology, focusing his efforts on the delivery and execution of the Studio’s most complex cultural, public, and urban design projects. Involved in all aspects of the Studio’s work, from business development to operations to design, he leads teams in communicating thoughtful, high-quality design through various means to clients, contractors, and others both inside and outside the profession. An advocate for underserved communities and a mentor to young architects and designers, William believes that design professionals have an obligation to examine policies and work to engage vital issues important to the design profession and to society at large.
DirectorManuel Hernandez, AIA
Manuel J Hernandez, AIA, is the founder and principal at Design Seed, Inc with over 15 years of experience in architectural project design, building, preparation of construction documents, construction management, and on-site construction supervision. His project experience includes residential, healthcare, commercial, educational, and municipal works. Manuel is involved in many architectural and design-build projects throughout the Chicago land and surrounding areas as the lead architect and builder.
Manuel is also the current President of Arquitectos' board of directors, a past Auxiliar Board member of the Chicago Parks Foundation, and an ongoing Habitat for Humanity volunteer. He actively engages with AIA Chicago's various
Drew Deering, AIA, is a Senior Associate and Project Manager at Moody Nolan. His broad experience encompasses many project types and sizes including sports stadiums, historic school renovations, higher education, and healthcare. Drew is dedicated to the profession through his continued involvement in the Institute. He has served as Chair on the AIA National Regional and Urban Design Committee, the AIA National Awards Task Group, the AIA Chicago Regional and Urban Design Knowledge Committee and was a Member of the AIA National Associates Committee. He has also presented about sustainable preservation and urbanism at the School of the Art Institute. Drew is an active member of the Logan Square community with his involvement in Logan Square Preservation and Friends of Brentano Elementary School.
DirectorChey Taylor, AIA
Chey Taylor, AIA, LEED AP, is an Associate at SMNG A Ltd with over 18 years of experience managing projects for public sector clients, including K-12 public school districts and community based not-for-profit organizations. Her project experience includes K-12 public school modernization, expansion and replacement projects, community health care clinics, early childhood facilities and public housing facilities. Chey is passionate about engaging design professionals in community issues and developing leadership in issues critical to the success and future of the profession and of the larger community. She is a past co-chair of the AIA Chicago Community Interface Committee, and helped develop the AIA Chicago Architect in Schools program that introduces the architecture profession and design thinking to 6-8th grade CPS students. She has previously chaired the Community Outreach Committee for the United Way Young Leaders Society.
DirectorMindy Viamontes, AIA
Mindy Viamontes, AIA, is a Senior Project Architect and Project Manager at exp with over 12 years of experience. She has a strong focus on public infrastructure and transit-related design. Mindy has led many high-profile civic projects including the recently completed CTA Washington/Wabash Station and the CTA 95th Terminal Improvement Project which is currently under construction. She is a strong communicator and collaborative team leader with an emphasis on technical and design excellence.
Mindy is a Past President and Board Member for Chicago Women in Architecture. She has served on the AIA Programming Committee, AIA National Legacy Committee, AEC Cares projectChicago Committee, AIA Chicago BRIDGE, AIA Women’s Leadership Summit, and has been a team captain for CANstruction for the last seven years.
Associate DirectorVuk Vujovic, Assoc. AIA
Vuk Vujovic is a Vice President, Director of Sustainability & Energy at Legat Architects in Chicago. He has a leadership role in integrating energy-efficient and environmentally friendly design among all the firm's projects.
His focus is on architectural research and sustainable design, as well as education of design professionals and general public about sustainability, renewable energy and the benefits of high performance building systems. Vuk is an Associate Member of AIA, member of USGBC Illinois and a member of International Living Future Institute.
Vuk Vujovic is also a Director of Legat Architect's design studio in Chicago, Illinois. The responsibility of this leadership position is to guide and mentor all project managers and architectural personnel in the skills and tasks of quality project delivery and to ensure the success of all projects within the design studio.
Associate DirectorCameron Acheson, Assoc. AIA
Cameron Acheson, Assoc. AIA, is a Staff Designer at Landon Bone Baker Architects (LBBA) and is working on a variety of rehab, scattered-site, and infill affordable housing projects throughout West Town and Humboldt Park. The firm’s model of practice supports her desire to work locally with community organizations to stabilize and preserve the character of Chicago neighborhoods, and to be an advocate for the communities in which she works.
Prior to joining LBBA, Cameron worked with Rural Studio, Auburn University’s design/build architecture program. There, she served as a 5th Year and Outreach Instructor, as well as a liaison to the City of Greensboro, Alabama. Her work with the City of Greensboro aided in establishing a Parks and Recreation Department, developing a comprehensive zoning map, and designing the foundation for a long-term city master plan. Cameron serves on the Associate Board of archi-treasures and is a participant in the AIA Chicago’s Bridge 7.0 leadership program.
Professional Affiliate DirectorPatrick Donley, Affiliate AIA
Pat Donley, Aff. AIA Chicago, is Vice President Business Development for Power Construction. Donley is responsible for the development of new business opportunities and development of new strategic business relationships. Since joining Power Construction in October 2010, the company has grown from $600M to over $1B in revenues. He has been responsible for helping Power succeed and grow within the multi-family residential and hotel market sectors.
Donley has over 35 years of experience in the Construction Industry, beginning with Walsh Construction in Chicago. During his years with Walsh, he was a Project Manager, Business Development Manager and Vice President. During his tenure at Walsh, leading sales and marketing efforts, the annual volume of work increased from $200M in 1989 to $2.5B in 2007. Prior to joining Power, he served as Vice President Business Development for the Midwest Region of Ryan Companies (a developer/contractor headquartered in Minneapolis) from 2007 – 2010.
Professional Affiliate DirectorRyan Biziorek, Aff. AIA
Ryan Biziorek, Aff. AIA, is an Associate consultant with Arup – a global consulting engineering firm. He leads the Acoustics, Audiovisual, and Theatre consulting practice in the Chicago office. He has been involved in providing technical expertise and project management skills for various building types. Ryan has over 10 years of experience in performing arts design, building service noise analysis, room acoustic modeling, public address and audiovisual systems design. He holds a BA in Physics from Kalamazoo College and an MSc in Sound & Vibration Studies from the University of Southampton, Institute of Sound & Vibration Research. Ryan has worked with a number of charitable and non-profit organizations in Chicago that serve the AEC community as a mentor, volunteer or board member. He is currently the President of the Chicago Architecture Foundation Auxiliary Board – a position he has held for the past 3 years.
Student DirectorOmar Garcia, AIAS
Omar Garcia, AIAS, is devoted to pushing the limits of creativity and motivating the environment of people around him. A current architecture student at the University of Illinois in Chicago, Omar is always looking to create a spark. His creative projects to date span multiple platforms such as videography, photography, furniture design, 2d/3d artworks, and definitely architecture. His commitment to motivating those around him has led to his active collaborations in organizations such as AIAS, where, as current president for UIC’s chapter, he has continued to produce thought-provoking events for his members, and has created a mentoring program focused on taking the fear and mysticism out of the first year of architecture school. Omar firmly believes in allowing his actions to demonstrate his hard-work, diligence, and dedication.
AIA Illinois DelegateFred Brandstrader, AIA
As a Director of Project Management with the CBRE team in downtown Chicago, Fred Brandstrader provides full program & project management services, including: building due diligence, full cycle planning / design / construction/ close-out project management services for both the hospitality and commercial sectors.
AIA Illinois DelegateJose Rodriguez, Intl. Assoc. AIA
Jose Rodriguez, Intl. Assoc. AIA, is Associate Principal at Willoughby Engineering (WE) with more than fifteen years of experience in architecture, construction and high-performance building consulting including sustainability and analytics. A graduate from Arizona State University with a Master of Science in Building Design and Climate Responsive Architecture, Jose currently leads the green and high-performance building efforts and initiatives of Willoughby. Former chair of the Committee on the Environment at AIA Chicago, also is active with the 2030 Commitment Working Group and a volunteer docent of the City of Chicago Energy Benchmarking Ordinance. Prior to WE, Mr. Rodriguez was part of the sustainability team at CH2M Hill and Skidmore, Owings and Merrill (SOM).