Call for proposals: Leadership Institute 2018

LI18_Call for proposals

Speak at Leadership Institute 2018!

Help shape tomorrow's leaders at Leadership Institute 2018. This powerful one-day training event equips architects and emerging professionals with essential skills to lead in their firms, communities, and the architecture industry. If you're a subject matter expert with a great concept for an education session, we invite you to submit your proposal by March 5.

Volunteer or host
Every year this dynamic event is hosted in multiple cities and across four time zones.

  • AIA chapters: Apply to be a regional venue and host this event for your chapter. Find out more > 
  • Volunteers: Help us run the event, or volunteer with the Center for Civic Leadership, an AIA member group, and you'll be engaged in a national effort to connect the many diverse groups within the AIA advancing opportunities for members to lead...Find out more >

Becoming a Sponsor of AIALi17


We're seeking champions of leadership! Consider becoming a sponsor of the AIA Leadership Institute 2017 and join our pledge to bring leadership education to architects and emerging professionals across the industry. 

Benefits include: web presence, print presence, being featured during the broadcast on November 16, marketing & communication with our participants, access to our live event, and complimentary registration.

Full sponsorship details are including in our Sponsorship Prospectus.

Early Registration extended through Sept. 15!

Early bird extended.jpg

The leadership event of the year is coming to a venue near you. Join us November 16 for Leadership Institute 2017, a powerful one-day leadership training event for architects. Earn up to 6.25 LU|HSW by participating at one of our five Regional Venue locations. 

You'll learn essential leadership skills that will equip you to take on a larger role in your firm, business, community, and the architecture industry. 

  • Keynotes by Sally Blount, dean of the Kellogg School of Management,Steven Lewis, FAIA, urban design director for the Central District at City of Detroit Planning and Development Department, and Vaki Mawema, project architect at Gensler
  • Sessions, workshops, and networking at five regional locations, plus special programming at each venue  
  • Topics include pipeline development, creating and leading high-performance teams, driving the future of your firm, strategies for working with public officials, and more

Save on registration with special early bird rates for AIA members, through September 15th.

Register now >

2017 AIA Women's Leadership Summit

Je'Nen Chastain and Georgia Cameron will be speaking on behalf of the AIA Center for Civic Leadership (CCL) at this year's sold out AIA Women's Leadership Summit in Washington, DC. Their session takes place Saturday morning and is entitled 'Training Architects to be Leaders'. As co-authors of the AIA workbook 'Living Your Life as a Leader', this presentation is based on their research through the process of creating the workbook. More details here.

Starting Your Path as a Citizen Architect

On July 8, 2017, AIA Center for Civic Leadership (CCL) Past Chairs Michael Ayles and Je'Nen Chastain presented a workshop at the Grassroots Leadership Conference of the American Institute of Architecture Students (AIAS). The session was named 'Starting Your Path as a Citizen Architect', and provided student leaders an overview of how to move into the industry of architecture from a leadership mindset. Each student received a copy of our recently completed workbook, 'Living Your Life as a Leader'.

Partner With Us

Our national planning team is busy working on the 2017 AIA Leadership Institute, and encourage you to consider partnering with us! The year's event promises to be the best year yet. We have just uploaded our 2017 Sponsorship Prospectus, now offering Bronze, Silver, Gold, and Platinum Level sponsorship. In the first two years this program has attracted over 600 participants, making it a great event to get in front of a large audience of industry leaders.

#AIALi17 Honorary Chair: Clark Manus, FAIA


The #AIALi17 team is thrilled to announce this year's Honorary Chair for the AIA Leadership Institute!

Clark Manus, FAIA, is CEO of Heller Manus Architects and served as the 87th President of The American Institute of Architects (AIA). In his role as a design principal and citizen architect, Clark’s 35-year career has influenced the character of San Francisco’s built environment. Following the 1989 earthquake, Clark chaired successive Mayoral Citizen Advisory Committees (CAC) over two decades, resulting in the removal of the damaged Embarcadero Freeway in 1992, and setting the stage for the rebirth of the downtown Rincon Hill and Transbay Transit District. His experience encompasses a wide range of new and reconstruction projects including residential, commercial, hospitality, civic, rehabilitation/adaptive re-use, performance facilities, retail, and urban design plans in the San Francisco Bay Area and China. In 2016, Clark was appointed as a Planning Commissioner with the City of Oakland, where he continues his work as a citizen architect.

Many thanks to Clark for his support of #AIALi17 and setting an example of what it means to be a #citizenarchitect. Mark your calendars and stay tuned for more information about this year's program and speakers!


Going to A'17 in Orlando? Be sure to sign up for Creating Impact as a Citizen Architect pre-convention workshop on Wednesday 4/26/17. Together we'll explore leadership, civic engagement, and hear from architects creating change in cities across the US. Here is the full program description:

Emerging Leaders



  Stephen Parker , AIA

Stephen Parker, AIA













As we gear up for AIALI’16 we take a look at how model leadership programs develop leaders.  Stephen Parker highlights the Emerging Leaders Program at SmithGroupJJR.

There are numerous leadership programs at firms large and small, especially as the firm leadership of the present sees their future in the young men and women they employ. At SmithGroupJJR, the Emerging Leaders Program lays out a plan for the firm’s future by forging a path forward for aspiring leaders. 

At SmithGroupJJR, the nation’s oldest, independent architecture and engineering firm, this two-year program is intended to better train and equip the next generation of leaders from within the firm’s ranks. Applicants are associate level (Architect 3, Engineer 3, Planner 3, etc) or higher and must seek the support of their office leadership. This is intended so that applicants can take the lead in their own future and gain support for the path they chose. The program links up the 15 selected candidates with mentors of their choosing, either from within their office, practice, discipline or beyond if they choose. There are three sessions per year that are hosted at different offices across the country, which helps the cohort of candidates broaden their network while forging bonds with one another. This is one of the best benefits of the program according to Brenna Costello, AIA,ACHA, EDAC, principal and medical planner at SmithGroupJJR. 

"Not only does the program introduce you to motivated colleagues across the company (each with such diverse strengths), it really opens your eyes to personal and team growth!  There is a confidence and camaraderie built among the group that you feel you could call each classmate for answers in the profession”.   

“The program fosters a safe space to discuss challenges among peers in a unique environment not always possible in the midst of project deadlines,” according to Diane Syer, Director of Talent Development at SmithGroupJJR.  

The program’s first year dives into business acumen, providing a deeper understanding of not only how a project is profitable, but how financial information is used to guide decision making at the studio, office and firm levels. The second year encompasses learning to lead, beginning with a thorough self-assessment and greater self-awareness of how one leads. Knowing one’s strengths and those of others is one of the basics of team building. This broadens into how to lead others, develop client relationships and ultimately, how to lead the firm. Participants develop emotional intelligence and strategic leadership skills.  

A hybrid, advanced path exists for established leaders who already have a firm grasp on business acumen and proven leadership at some scale. In the future, the Emerging Leaders Program will further diversify from a management-focused leadership program to include design and technical leadership. As leaders develop with differing passions and capacities in the diverse professions the firm represents, this will help develop a leadership culture throughout the company. 

In the final year of the program, candidates complete a capstone project, modeled on the 100 Day Challenge. They work in teams, paired with an executive sponsor within the firm, to help them research a strategic initiative and prepare recommendations to present to the Board of Directors. In the same manner that the firm has invested in their future, candidates are investing in the future of the firm.

Early bird rates end 9/19!

Early bird rates end Monday! 
The premiere one-day leadership training for architects is just around the corner. Take advantage of early bird savings and join us for Leadership Institute 2016. It’s your opportunity to develop key leadership skills and network with peers and industry leaders. 

Sponsor a leader on the rise from your firm to attend before prices go up!

4 Reasons to attend:
- You'll learn best practices in leadership, design, and practice.
- You'll join a network of local and industry leaders who are changing the leadership dialogue.
- You'll hear a dynamic keynote by Latent Design's Katherine Darnstadt, AIA, LEED BD+C.
- You'll earn up to 7 LUs for attending.

Hosted in Washington, DC, this event will also be broadcast live to four regional venues. Or attend virtually from any location. 

Register by September 19 for early bird savings!

Brought to you by the AIA Center for Civic Leadership and sponsored by the AIA College of Fellows and Strogoff Consulting.


The AIA Center for Civic Leadership is pleased to announce our final #AIALi16 Keynote Speaker Roselinde Torres. As a recognized thought provoking expert on Leadership, she has been featured in a variety of forums including TED where her talk has been viewed in excess of 3 Million times. 

In a 21st century world, which is more global, digitally enabled, and transparent, with faster speeds of information flow and innovation, and where nothing big gets done without some kind of a complex matrix, relying on traditional development practices will stunt your growth as a leader.” - Roselinde Torres, Senior Partner and Managing Director of The Boston Consulting Group (BCG) based in New York City.

Roselinde’s research is founded on the premise that the 21st century will be marked not just by great individual leaders, but by great leadership teams. Such teams will be led by a steward who demonstrates curiosity about trends, is empathic, has an appreciation for other points of view, and focuses on multiplicative value.

As a senior leader in the People and Organization Practice Area, Roselinde leads BCG’s CEO Advisory in North America having advised over 200 CEOs across industry sectors and markets. In 2014, she received the Woman Leaders in Consulting Award from Consulting Magazine for exceptional leadership within the firm and industry and for her expertise on the topic of Leadership. 

Registration is LIVE! Early bird closes 9/19!

AIALI16 Facilitators Announced

The AIA Center for Civic Leadership is proud to announce Michael Strogoff, FAIA and Stephen Epstein of Strogoff Consulting as Plenary Workshop Facilitators for the AIA Leadership Institute 2016. Michael and Stephen will join Co-Chairs Michelle Stotz, Assoc. AIA and Jamie Crawley, AIA as they lead the five Regional Venues in this unique workshop presentation. Together the five locations: Dallas, Charleston, Indianapolis, San Francisco, and Washington, DC will collaborate while taking a deep dive into the workbook, "Living Your Life as a Leader". 

Michael Strogoff, FAIA is the managing principal of an architecture firm, a frequent speaker on practice management issues, Advisory Group Chair of AIA's Practice Management Knowledge Community, and advisor to design professionals nationwide. Stephen Epstein’s career spans 25 years with small, medium, and large firms providing strategic leadership; serving as mentor and coach to senior, intermediate, and emerging professionals; and providing training seminars related to attracting and retaining talent, leadership, financial accountability, project management, and risk management.

Read their full bios by visiting our speaker page.