2019 Young Architects Award Recipient

Emerging talent deserves recognition. The AIA Young Architects Award honors individuals who have demonstrated exceptional leadership and made significant contributions to the architecture profession early in their careers.

A complete architect, Julie Hiromoto, AIA, marries design skill with business acumen to advance the profession and advocate for design excellence. Always willing to directly confront challenges, her focus on design through the lens of sustainability, health and wellness, and next-generation building systems embodies her mission to enhance the built environment in responsible ways.

Hiromoto is a principal and New York office director for HKS Architects, where she has been entrusted with many of the firm’s large-scale complicated projects and is a leader of its Global Design Council and editorial board. Prior to joining HKS, Hiromoto was at the center of Skidmore, Owings & Merrill’s high-performance initiative, beginning with its launch in 2009. Her team lobbied SOM’s leadership to sign the AIA 2030 Commitment—in the first few years of reporting, SOM became one of the most significant contributors to the 2030 database. Hiromoto also founded the Sustainable Knowledge Network, which endeavored to green SOM’s operations and offered a forum for discussion about green building strategies and technology. For more than a decade, she has played a number of critical roles in the firm’s project at One World Trade Center, including implementation of its sustainable design guidelines.

Outside of the office, Hiromoto was instrumental in launching CASE (Center for Architecture Science and Ecology), a forward-thinking building system technology research and development consortium that creates project teams of academics, design professionals, and manufacturers. The initiative has contributed to 10 research areas through its unique style of engagement, producing a large-scale demonstration of air-quality remediation and energy savings by constructing a modular green wall based on NASA technology at an emergency call center in the Bronx.

A recognized leader in the sustainable design community, both locally and nationally, Hiromoto drives positive change as a member of the AIA’s Committee on the Environment Advisory Group. Her work supports the AIA mission to lead and coordinate the profession’s commitment to the environment and energy-related issues, and she tirelessly promotes the role of an architect as a steward of the planet’s living systems. As chair or the Large Firm Round Table Sustainability Group from 2015 to 2017, she helped create two new working groups focused on water and energy. Working with the leaders she selected to head the Water Working Group, Hiromoto developed a water resource guide that is referenced in the COTE Top Ten Toolkit.

Sincere in her pursuits, Hiromoto is able to connect deeply with fellow architects who, in turn, follow her lead. A driven advocate, her commitment to the environment has made a difference in every community in which she has been involved.


Raymond "Skipper" Post, FAIA (Chair), Post Architects, Baton Rouge, Louisiana

Edward Vance, FAIA, EV&A Architects, Inc., Las Vegas, Nevada

Peter Kuttner, FAIA, Cambridge Seven Associates, Inc., Boston, Massachusetts

John Castellana, FAIA, TMP Architecture, Inc., Bloomfield Hill, Michigan

Roger Schluntz, FAIA, University of New Mexico, Albuquerque

Lora Teagarden, AIA, RATIO Architects, Inc., Indianapolis, Indiana

Image credits

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HKS, Inc.

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James Ewing I OTTO

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Albert Vecerka I Esto

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Rafael Gamo