I grew up in the small town of Slinger in rural, south-eastern Wisconsin. As a child, I could be found drawing or building something with thousands of my LEGOs - separated and organized by color and size of course. My decision to attend a private engineering college soon lead to a better understanding that above all, I enjoy the interaction between people and the built environment we live in. Four years and nearly 230 credit hours later, I received a Bachelor of Science Degree in Architecture Design from the University of Wisconsin-Milwaukee with minors in Art History and K-8 Education.
During my time at UWM, I was always active in something - serving on numerous committees within the School of Architecture, participating in six national design competitions, volunteering at the school's Design Co-op, mentoring four design students, helping run the university's American Institute of Architecture Students (AIAS) Chapter, and serving two years on the American Institute of Architects (AIA) Wisconsin Board of Directors. Still the interaction with my surroundings always served as the driving force for these seemingly varied activities.
Upon graduating cum laude, I was elected to serve as the 49th National Vice President of the AIAS. My year in office included visits to nearly 70 schools of architecture in four countries, and afforded me the opportunity to serve on the Association of Collegiate Schools of Architecture (ACSA) Board of Directors, on numerous committees of the AIA, the education committee of the National Council of Architecture Registration Boards (NCARB), and three accreditation teams for the National Architecture Accrediting Board (NAAB). Along the way I was invited to speak at international conferences in Halifax, Nova Scotia; Bath, Sommerset; and London, England.
Following a short time working in residential and commercial design firms back in my home state, I was presented with the opportunity to take a managing role in overseeing the AIAS Freedom by Design Program (FBD) as it grew from a pilot initiative in a small handful of school to a nationally recognized social design program in over 80 schools of architecture with support of AIA, NCARB, Target, AARP, the Paralyzed Veterans of America (PVA), the Michael Graves Studio, and over 50 architecture and construction firms across North America.
Now, 10+ years and thousands more miles of travel for both AIAS and more recently CSI, I continue to be blessed with the opportunity to work with students, emerging professionals, and experienced members of the design and construction industry on issues ranging from sustainability and industry trends, to national standards and best practices. While my path as taken me far away from those (well organized) piles of LEGOs, my love of the built environment is still the driving force for the work I do.