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> AIA Diversity Recognition Program

AIA Diversity Recognition Program


Entries are now being accepted for the 2016 Diversity Recognition Program. The program recognizes architects, components and others for exemplary commitment and contributions to diversifying the profession of architecture. Applications are due Wednesday November 18, 2015. For information about this year’s program, click here.

Apply for the program here.


The American Institute of Architects (AIA) recently selected Urban Design Regional Employment Action for Minorities (UDream) and Sorg Architects as the 2015 honorees of the AIA Diversity Recognition Program. Now in its seventh year, the AIA Diversity Recognition Program recognizes architects, AIA components, educational institutions, and organizations that are actively committed to increasing diversity and inclusion within the architecture profession. Read More.

Submission categories include:

    • K-12 initiatives

    • Community engagement

    • Citizen architect

    • Knowledge-sharing initiatives

    • Inclusive firm policies

Questions? Email




About the Program


Diversity Recognition Program Mission Statement: The AIA Diversity Recognition Program seeks to recognize architects, components, and others for exemplary commitment and contributions to diversifying the profession of architecture. A diversified profession mirrors the society it serves; celebrates and encourages the contributions of all architects, regardless of race, ethnicity, national origin, gender, age, sexual orientation, physical ability, religious belief, geographic location, or practice; encourages alternatives to traditional practice models; and provides opportunities for a greater variety of individuals to become architects, take advantage of leadership opportunities, and influence our practices and our professional lives.

Continuing to work towards a renewed AIA, the 2015 AIA Diversity Recognition Program has been changed to align with the AIA’s Advancement Statement to: (1) Elevate public awareness (2) Advocate for the profession and (3) Expand and share knowledge. For more on the AIA’s Advancement Statement and Repositioning efforts, please visit


This call for submissions is open to all, including members of the AIA and non-AIA members. Applicants may enter in no more than two categories in any given year. Multiple entries in the same category are not permissible (i.e., only one entry per category for a total of two categories). Should an applicant submit multiple entries in a category, none of the entries will be considered. The jury reserves the right to reclassify an entry if this is deemed to be appropriate.

Anyone submitting for the 2015 AIA Diversity Recognition Program should have no active litigation for discrimination on the basis of race, ethnicity, gender, physical ability, sexual orientation, age or religious belief (see AIA Public Policy and Position Statements on Diversity).

*Prior recipients of the AIA Diversity Recognition Program are not eligible to resubmit their AIA-recognized initiatives. Submissions by prior recipients must feature a new initiative.

Submission Deadline, Judging, and Presentation of Award(s)


AIA national must receive all entries via the submission site on or before 11:59 p.m. ET on Monday, December 1, 2014. The jury, composed of AIA members and representatives from collateral and partner organizations with experience in the relevant areas, will review the submissions and exhibits (supporting documents) and select the award recipient(s). Award recipients will be recognized at the 2015 AIA Grassroots Leadership and Legislative Conference during the Awards Luncheon on Friday, March 6. Selected honorees should be prepared to travel to this event.

Submission Materials & Requirements


Relevant materials such as budgets, historical data, newsletter articles, press releases, videotapes, brochures, issue briefs, and testimony may be included as exhibits (supporting documents); however, they must be uploaded on the web site. HARD COPY OR EMAILED SUBMISSIONS WILL NOT BE ACCEPTED.

All submissions MUST include at least 10 to15 digital images (color or black-and-white; 300K or higher) for use in a video that will air during the awards program. The photos should help tell the story of the program, activities, and people involved from beginning to end. Include, for example, photos that represent elements of the program (e.g., buildings, brochures, magazine covers) and images of members, local leaders, and others involved in the process (group photographs of participants are particularly desirable). Photos should represent the program or initiative spearheaded by the individual, NOT photos of the individual unless he/she is participating in a meeting or group activity that is part of the process.

A Look at Last Year’s Honorees

The Architects in the Making (AIM) Summer Camp was established to give inner city children a basic understanding of architecture and construction, giving them the opportunity to learn and appreciate their city’s built environment.

Summer CAMP (Cincinnati’s Architectural Mentoring Program), offers a one-week architecture exposure program to 8th and 9th graders from the Cincinnati metro area and beyond. The $75 tuition for this valuable day-camp experience makes it affordable for low income families.

Previous Recipients

2013 AIA Diversity Recognition Program Recipients

Buffalo/WNY Architecture + Education Program – Buffalo, NY

NOMA Louisiana’s Project Pipeline – New Orleans, LA

AIA Diversity Recognition Program Recipient

AIA Dallas Latinos in Architecture

2011 AIA Diversity Recognition Program Recipients

Carol Kurth, FAIA (Bedford, NY) – Fostering Diversity through Teaching, Mentoring and Practice

Dougherty & Dougherty Architects, LLP (Costa Mesa, CA) – Firm-wide Focus on Creating a Diverse Practice

Shepley Bulfinch (Boston, MA) - Forging a Diverse Culture

2010 AIA Diversity Recognition Program Recipients

AIA Kansas City Women in Design Committee: Outreach 2009-2010 – Kansas City, MO

AIA Seattle Diversity Roundtable – Seattle, WA

Studio Red Collaborative – Houston, TX

The Boston Architectural College: Implementing an Institutional Commitment to Diversity – Boston, MA

2009 AIA Diversity Recognition Program Recipients

AIA Denver Women in Design – Denver, CO

AIA Kansas City Women in Design Committee – Kansas City, MO

BRR Architecture: Diversity Committee, Support Programs, Leadership Opportunities, and Community Caring Program – Merriam, KS

BSA: Youth Programs – Boston, MA

BSA: Inclusive Networks – Boston, MA

HOK: Diversity Awareness and Inclusion Initiative – Offices Nationwide

KKE Architects: Architectural Youth Program – Minneapolis, MN

Lori A. Brown, AIA: Gendered Landscapes – Syracuse, NY (Honorable Mention)

Mehrnoosh Mojallali, AIA: The Association for Women in Architecture Group Exhibit
Venice Beach, CA

Oscar L. Harris, FAIA: Mentor in Diversity – Atlanta, GA

PBS&J: Diverse Practice – Offices Nationwide

David Goldstein, AIA: The Santa Barbara County High School Architectural Design Competition – Santa Barbara, CA

Get Ideas from Previous Submissions

We invite you to think of ways that you can help further the goal of a more diverse profession. Read below for project and program ideas from previous submissions to the AIA Diversity Recognition Program.

By Submitter Type:


Educational Institutions



By Year:

2014 AIA Diversity Recognition Program Submissions

2013 AIA Diversity Recognition Program Submissions

2012 AIA Diversity Recognition Program Submissions

2011 AIA Diversity Recognition Program Submissions

2010 AIA Diversity Recognition Program Submissions

2009 AIA Diversity Recognition Program Submissions


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