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 sixth 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.
First Vice President/President-ElectCatherine 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.
Past-PresidentDawn Schuette, FAIA
Dawn Schuette, FAIA, LEED AP, is a partner at Threshold Acoustics. A graduate of the Illinois Institute of Technology, Schuette is a past Chair of the National AIA Advisory Group for the Interfaith Forum on Religion, Art, and Architecture (IFRAA). She taught as an Adjunct Professor in the College of Architecture at the Illinois Institute of Technology and is a member of IIT's Alumni Board of Directors. She authored an invited chapter for Building Type Basics for Performing Arts Facilities and is a contributing writer to the Journal of American Organbuilding and other publications. She has presented her work at national conventions for the American Institute of Organbuilders, the American Institute of Architects, and the Acoustical Society of America.
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 SponsorshipRobert 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.
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.
SecretaryApril 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.
TreasurerCraig Cernek, AIA
Craig Cernek, AIA, LEED AP, is principal of The Archi/Build Group, a small firm providing architecture and design/build services for residential and light commercial needs in the greater Chicago metropolitan area since 1990. Cernek is current co-chair of AIA Chicago's Small Practitioners Group, chair of the Small Project Awards, and a past chair of the Working with an Architect committee. He also chairs the Friends of West Edgewater Park, a not-for-profit neighborhood group, advocating the development of a public park on the property of the shuttered Edgewater Medical Center in Chicago.
DirectorJessica Figenholtz, AIA
As Director of Higher Education Planning, 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 13 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.
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.
DirectorMichael Pfeffer, AIA
Michael Pfeffer, AIA, has worked on complex projects in more than two dozen cities around the world. After a 15 year tenure at Skidmore Owings & Merrill, Pfeffer recently joined Related Midwest at Vice President of Architecture. Pfeffer’s primary focus at Related Midwest will be guiding the design of the developments on the former Chicago Spire site at 400 N. Lake Shore Drive and a 62-acre site along the Chicago River at Clark & Roosevelt. In addition to his board commitments at AIA Chicago, he also serves on the on the boards of both Habitat for Humanity Chicago and the ACE Mentorship Program. Academically, Pfeffer lectures on professional practice issues at his alma mater Notre Dame, and has hosted advanced undergraduate classes for a design presentation in Chicago.
DirectorLaura Crane, AIA
Laura Crane, AIA, is an Associate at bKL Architecture with experience in mixed-use residential towers and office towers both nationally and abroad. Intrigued by the initial allure of a building, Laura is passionate about exterior wall assemblies and building façades as the first point of public engagement. Current co-Chair of AIA Chicago's Young Architects Forum, she is an advocate for networking local young design professionals to advance in Chicago's prominent design community. Laura received her Bachelor of Science from Florida State University in Interior Design, in addition to working in electrical engineering before moving to Chicago to receive her Master of Architecture degree from The School of the Art Institute of Chicago and pursue a career in architecture.
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.
DirectorJennifer 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. Jennifer maintains close ties to academia currently serving as an adjunct professor at Illinois Institute of Technology (IIT) teaching architecture studio courses. She believes in teaching students how to think critically about our social and political environment as part of the design process. In addition to several project awards, Jennifer recently 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 for the Currencies of Architecture Competition hosted by the Chicago Architectural Club in affiliation with the Chicago Architecture Biennial.
DirectorEdward Peck, FAIA, LEED AP
Edward has more than 15 years of experience in architecture as a building scientist and architect. Throughout his career he has specialized on projects involving sustainable and innovative building skins. He has experience as a design architect, a design technical leader of specialty skin / façade contractor and as a technical skin consultant. Edward is currently a Vice President at Thornton Tomasetti where he is one of the leaders of the Façade Engineering Practice.
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 DirectorAvraham Mor
Avraham Mor is a partner and lead lighting designer for the Chicago office of Lightswitch Architectural, a global lighting design firm. Avraham collaborates with architects, engineers and other design and construction professionals to design fiscally and environmentally responsible lighting for commercial, educational, hospitality, museum, residential, and retail projects. He has served as the Secretary of the Chicago Architecture Foundation Auxiliary Board, the President of the Illumination Engineering Society (IES) Chicago Section, and the regional coordinator for the International Association of Lighting Designers (IALD). He is dedicated to increasing sponsorship for AIA Chicago and helping to support both the Sponsorship Committee and Small Practitioner's Group in their efforts. He is also interested in partnering with the Chicago Energy Benchmarking Working Group to increase its visibility in the lighting and lighting controls market.
Student DirectorJulia Mosqueda, AIAS
Julia Mosqueda, AIAS, is currently in her fourth year of a Bachelors of Architecture at Illinois Institute of Technology. She works with College of Architecture Admissions and AIAS Project Yellow to inform high school students and generate their interest in the field of architecture. Julia is interested in artisanal architecture and its hoping to pursue her career in sustainable and adaptive building.
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).
AIA Illinois DelegateJaneen Harrell, AIA
Janeen Harrell is a native of Durham, North Carolina and earned a Bachelor of Architecture degree from Hampton University in 2001. She practiced for three years with The Freelon Group Architects before studying at Cornell University where she earned the degree of Master of Arts in Interior Design with a specialization is Sustainable and Regenerative design in 2006. Her thesis work explored the affordability of sustainable housing through comparison of materials and potential contribution to a carbon trading market. After graduating, she stayed at Cornell to teach the Sophomore Interior Design Studio before moving to Chicago, where she has worked with Nicholas Clark Architects and Harley Ellis Devereaux.