Session 9: Public Policy and Advocacy

Date: May 2, 2014
Time: 12:00 pm – 5:00pm
Led by: Marcy Giannunzio, AIA, LEED AP BD+C, CDT, & Mindy Goodroe, AIA, LEED AP BD+C

Session 9 PDF


Presentation: AIA|DC’s Advocacy Committee

Presented by: Carolyn Sponza, AIA, LEED AP BD+C

Carolyn Sponza kicked off Session 9 with an informal discussion about the impact and role of architects in public policy and advocacy at its most local level. Together with her colleagues on the AIA|DC Advocacy Committee, Carolyn interfaces with the local regulatory agencies and government groups to bring attention to local regulations, practices, and policies which matter to the practitioners of architecture in the District of Columbia. These issues range from requirements for professional licensing to the city’s approach to transit-oriented development.  The CKLDP participants were particularly impressed by two major accomplishments of the committee over the past year – the hosting of a mayoral candidate forum in which all the democratic candidates participated to discuss issues of interest to the architecture and design community, and the roll-out of ANC Process Workshops focused on training ANC commissioners throughout the city on matters of zoning, design, and the public realm.


Presentation: AIA Advocacy

Presented by:   Adam Melis, AIA Director, Political Affairs & Engagement and Andrew Goldberg, Assoc. AIA, AIA Director, Government Relations and Outreach

Adam Melis and Andrew Goldberg direct a large portion of the AIA’s public policy and advocacy efforts on the national level, and provided a tag-team presentation outlining both the AIA’s involvement on these fronts and the need for architects to be engaged in these efforts. There are two main groups of issues that architects should concern themselves with – business issues such as small business regulations, liability, permitting, permitting, procurement, education, licensing, taxes and healthcare; and built environment issues such as zoning, development, resources conservation, and building codes. To a large degree politicians listen to people who are actively involved, participating and leading in the advocacy process – hence, the more involved and outspoken architects are as a group, the more power we have to influence policy, legislation, and practice.