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      American Institute of Architects and Public Architecture partner to advance pro bono service

      Contact: Matt Tinder

      Contact: Barbara Franzoia

      For immediate release:
      Washington, D.C. and San Francisco – January 17, 2012 –
      The American Institute of Architects (AIA) and Public Architecture signed a Memorandum of Understanding (MoU) on December 13, 2011 in San Francisco, marking the start of a new partnership to support pro bono design.

      Through the new relationship, the AIA and Public Architecture will encourage AIA members to pledge to The 1%, a nationwide program of Public Architecture that challenges architecture and design firms to commit a minimum of 1% of their time to pro bono service and facilitates a matching service to connect firms with nonprofits seeking pro bono design services.

      AIA and Public Architecture have agreed to build a portal on The 1% website to launch later this year that will support and track AIA members’ service contributions to communities in need. Service contributions pledged through The 1% are valued today at nearly $40 million annually.

      “Architects care deeply about a lot of things and making a positive impact on society is chief among them. Pro bono work is a wonderful way for architects to meet the demand for service and demonstrate the value of design to clients who might not have even considered working with an architect before,” said Robert Ivy, FAIA, Executive Vice President/Chief Executive Officer of the American Institute of Architects.

      In the 21st century, the AIA must be a network of services, individuals, sources and knowledge linked together to connect people with resources they seek. A key strategy to achieving this vision is to put AIA members in touch with sources outside of the AIA. Public Architecture’s mission is consistent with AIA’s values.

      “While architecture professionals have traditionally been philanthropic, until now the profession has never institutionalized pro bono service as a fundamental component of practice,” said John Peterson, AIA, Founder and President of Public Architecture. “This partnership is a historic leap forward towards a more comprehensive commitment to creating better environments in all communities.”

      The partnership is expected to formally launch at the AIA National Convention in Washington, D.C, May 17-19, 2012. Members are encouraged to participate now in The 1% program and can find additional resources regarding pro bono services on the AIA web site.

      The 1% program
      The 1% program of Public Architecture gathers the commitment of the designers of the built environment and connects nonprofits with architecture and design firms willing to give of their time pro bono. It is the leading national venue for firms to document their pro bono contributions, discover pro bono resources, and find new project opportunities.

      Public Architecture
      Public Architecture is a national 501(c)(3) nonprofit based in San Francisco. It engages architecture firms, nonprofits, and manufacturers to commit to design for the public good through its nationally recognized 1% program; it acts to generate positive change through public-interest design initiatives; and shares the potential of design to change the world through advocacy and outreach.

      About The American Institute of Architects
      For over 150 years, members of the American Institute of Architects have worked with each other and their communities to create more valuable, healthy, secure, and sustainable buildings and cityscapes. Members adhere to a code of ethics and professional conduct to ensure the highest standards in professional practice. Embracing their responsibility to serve society, AIA members engage civic and government leaders and the public in helping find needed solutions to pressing issues facing our communities, institutions, nation and world.


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