Designing sustainable communities is of utmost importance to the AIA and so, the association has programs to provide technical assistance in the area. We’ll be talking about those programs, and the larger issues of creating sustainable communities, with three people who know the topic well. Joining us today are Todd Scott, Design Assistance Team Leader; Erin Simmons, Director, Design Assistance Program and Joel Mills, Director, Center for Communities by Design, about how they work with AIA components, members and partners to walk the walk.
Joel Mills provides expertise and support for the Center for Communities By Design’s Sustainable Design Assistance Team, and Regional and Urban Design Assistance Team programs. Joel’s experience includes community-based technical assistance, process design, facilitation and training across a number of fields including juvenile justice reform, local government, civic media and emergency management. During the 1990s, Joel spent several years supporting international democratization initiatives by providing technical assistance to political parties, local governments, civic and international organizations.
J. Todd Scott specializes in historic preservation and downtown revitalization. His experience includes stints with Oklahoma City, as historic preservation officer, and with King County, Washington, where he currently provides assistance for historic properties in that county and sixteen suburban and rural communities. He has been involved in the rehabilitation of hundreds of structures in dozens of small downtowns as the state architect for Oklahoma Main Street and for DesignWorks, an arts-based design charrette program. Todd has served on many AIA Regional and Urban Design Assistant Teams.
Erin Simmons, who provides process expertise, facilitation and support for the Center for Communities By Design’s Sustainable Design Assistance Team, and the Regional and Urban Design Assistance Team programs. To date, Erin has served as staff lead on over 35 design assistance teams. Prior to joining the AIA, Erin was senior historic preservationist and architectural historian for an environmental and engineering firm in Georgia, where her work included preservation planning and creating historic district design guidelines and zoning ordinances.
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