2011 Recipient | AIA Young Architects Award

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Jennifer Knudsen, AIA

Jennifer T. Knudsen, AIA | Notes of Interest

Jennifer Knudsen, AIA, has proven to be a pioneer in BIM-enabled integrated project delivery, which empowers architects to combine innovative design, technology, and project delivery to create sustainable and beautiful architecture. Through this vehicle, she has heightened the quality of collaboration between fields, changing the products of and profession of architecture for the better.

Knudsen joined the firm of CO Architects in Los Angeles 12 years ago. She subsequently completed graduate school at Columbia, worked for several years with Rafael Vinoly Architects PC, and then rejoined CO Architects six years ago.

In these years of practice, three of them as a licensed architect, Jenna has focused on transforming the conduct of the architectural design and construction environment-- often characterized by division, risk-aversion and inefficiency--to one that transcends these forces. She does this by creating teams of design- and building-craft professionals that are unified by a common design vision. Recognizing that the success of architecture is dependent on both an exceptional vision as well as its enlightened execution, she has applied the collaborative and transparent environment of the Building Information Model (BIM) in an integrated project delivery (IPD) format to change the way the architect and the building craft interact. As a hands-on team leader, she demonstrates to clients and the extended design/construction team the unparalleled potential and successful application of a more sustainable project strategy.

Jennifer Knudsen, AIA

According to Thomas Chessum, FAIA, principal of CO Architects, Knudsen is "uniquely endowed with a limitless ability to gather and translate the vision, and the technical and process circumstances of a project into architecture of the highest order. Her embrace of the use of BIM, as both a design and team integration tool, has been foundational to CO Architects' innovative use of BIM."

Indeed, Knudsen was recognized for her unique and innovative skills by early BIM-use awards from CO Architects, and later as a recipient of the 2010 AIA TAP Building Information Model Award.

Given the national prominence and innovative outcomes of the projects to which she has contributed, she has taken the opportunity to further leverage her beliefs and skills through presentations at many national conferences and symposia. Her appearances have included presentations at the AIA/TAP National Convention in Boston in 2008 and Ecobuild America in Washington, D.C. in 2009. She educates peers, clients, builders, and craftsmen about these pioneering methods and tools, their use, and the opportunities they offer.

Knudsen's significant contribution to architectural practice and the greater profession is her unequaled leadership, knowledge, and continued advancement of an architecture enhanced by the interactive use of BIM in a team environment. Her work has advanced the collaboration between designer and builder, furthering the efficiency and progress of architecture as a whole.


  • Photo Credit: © CO Architects; Rafael Vinoly Architects, PC

Jennifer T. Knudsen, AIA

Jennifer Knudsen, AIA

Jury Comments

Jenna provides to the practice and the greater profession great leadership, knowledge, and continued advancement of an architecture enhanced by the interactive use of BIM in a team environment.

Jenna unites designer and builder through her skillful BIM management. She ensures effificancy and productivity, as she is known to get the most out of all parties involved in a project and instill a drive in the group to be collaborative.

Her progression of BIM use in the profession is crucial and beneficial to the future of architecture.

2011 AIA Young Architects Award Jury

  • 2010 Chancellor:
  • Edward J. Kodet, Jr., FAIA
  • Kodet Architectural Group, Ltd.
  • Minneapolis
  • 2010 Vice Chancellor:
  • Chester A. Widom, FAIA
  • WWCOT Architecture & Interiors
  • Santa Monica, Calif.
  • 2010 Bursar:
  • Norman L. Koonce, FAIA
  • McLean, Va.
  • Secretary:
  • Ronald L. Skaggs, FAIA, FACHA
  • HKS, Inc.
  • Dallas
  • 2011 Incoming Bursar:
  • William J. Stanley, FAIA
  • Stanley Love-Stanley, PC
  • Atlanta

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