January 30, 2009
  Eight Receive Young Architects Award

Summary: The AIA congratulates the eight recipients of the 2009 Young Architects Awards. This special honor is bestowed upon professionals licensed 10 years or fewer (regardless of their age) who have shown exceptional leadership and make significant contributions to the profession early in their careers.

Matthew Bremer, AIA
Nominated by the AIA New York Chapter and a recipient of that chapter’s New Practices Award, Bremer is recognized for “what he has already achieved at this stage of his career, and for the potential that his teaching, his writing, and his leadership indicate,” state James McCullar, FAIA, and Fredric Bell, FAIA, in their nomination letter. Also active in the AIA, Bremer founded and co-chairs the New York Chapter New Practices Committee and sits on the chapter’s Oculus Committee. “Matthew Bremer is a young architect who combines recognized and celebrated talent with a willingness to support the profession and provide mentorship for others,” writes FXFOWLE Senior Partner Mark E. Strauss, FAIA. Bremer’s attention to detail and design talent are also the focus of letters of support from consultants and other architects with whom he collaborated, including Calvin Tsao, FAIA, who writes: “Matt embraced the spirit of this firm to design architecture and interiors, holistically and integrally across numerous scales.”

Angela Brooks, AIA
A principal with Pugh + Scarpa and cofounder of the nonprofit Livable Places, Brooks is devoted to creating “long-lasting, enduring, and beautiful spaces for both our residents and the neighborhoods in which we work,” writes Community Corporation of Santa Monica Executive Director Joan Ling. “She has a particular passion for effective planning and creation of stable neighborhoods and through this focus she has been a leader … with her work in affordable mixed-use housing and innovative strategies for sustainable development in the urban realm,” writes UT College of Architecture Dean John M. McRae, FAIA, in his letter of nomination. Brooks has been involved with projects that have received 7 national AIA awards and more than 25 other AIA design awards, notes Lawrence Scarpa, AIA. Those projects include the Colorado Court affordable apartments and the Solar Umbrella home. “I believe Angela has the ability to lead the profession in the direction of a new paradigm: combining design, sustainability, and social concern,” writes David Baker, FAIA. “Her vision is clear and decisive; her manner is inclusive and persuasive; her skills are diverse; and her creativity is exemplary.”

Matthew Kreilich, AIA
From his studio days at the University of Minnesota, Kreilich has been recognized as an outstanding, holistic designer. “In his young career he has pursued a breadth of programmatically and culturally rich project experiences working at the best of our local Minneapolis firms,” writes Perkins + Will Design Principal Dave Dimond in his nomination letter. He is also noted for his pro bono work for the Tony Award-winning Theatre de la Jeune Lune, renovating its lobby beautifully on a shoestring budget, emphasizes Director Steve Richardson. “To work with an artist both terrifically talented and fiscally responsible: a truly great experience for the client,” he writes. “It is not difficult to visualize Matt’s contribution as an architect,” adds Julie Snow, FAIA, principal of the firm in which Kreilich currently works. “His design voice has been demonstrated, his knowledge of construction and how architecture operates in the world and how his contributions will inspire the next generation of architects.”

Haril Pandya, AIA
A superior project manager/designer at CBT, Pandya is also very active in the AIA. “He was the driving force behind the creation of our chapter’s first Young Professionals Advisory Council,” writes Boston Society of Architects President Diane Georgopulos, FAIA, in her nomination. “Pandya’s work led to the creation of a seat for YPAC’s chair on our chapter’s board of directors.” In community outreach, Pandya has worked with Habitat for Humanity in Boston designing an affordable, sustainable prototype and managing their construction. Pandya’s pro bono work extends overseas as well, as supported by Gujarat, India, Chief Minister Narendra Modi, who extols Pandya’s design contributions to developing a prototype for the one-teacher schools that are the backbone of India’s literacy program. Working with the Blackstone Group, a large developer, Pandya has overseen more than $100 million in design and construction. “He masterfully brings people together both young and experienced to form a team to tackle each of our assignments,” write Richard Bertman, FAIA, and Charles Tseckares, FAIA, lauding also his talents in music and filmmaking, which he has used to market for CBT and its clients.

Jinhee Park, AIA
“Park is among those few uncommon young architects whose contributions and skills will shape our profession for decades to come,” writes Diane Georgopulos, FAIA, on behalf of the Boston Society of Architects nomination. “It is our belief that the criteria for the AIA Young Architects Award might well have been conceived with Park in mind.” Park and the firm she co-founded are widely published, including being awarded the first Metropolis Next Generation Prize. “Their project, recycling the remnants of Boston’s Big Dig into beautiful housing, so impressed the judges that the proposal, happily, came to represent the high standards we have since then put on our awards program,” writes Metropolis Editor-in-Chief Susan S. Szenasy. “In terms of sustainability and its long-term impact globally, Ms. Park is a visionary before her time,” adds IIT College of Architecture Dean Donna V. Robertson, FAIA, with whom Park worked as the spring 2008 Morgenstern Visiting Professor. Her work extends overseas as well, “selected to design 100 villas in Ordos, Inner Mongolia,” notes supporter Kyu Sung Woo, FAIA.

Camilo Parra, AIA
Recognized widely in Houston as a designer and builder of upscale and affordable townhome developments, Parra also conducts a school of design studio and volunteers in his community and alma matter, UT at Austin. “One of the unique things about Camilo is that he not only has his own practice, but develops his own projects; last year alone Parra Design Group developed 70 housing units,” points out AIA Houston President Brian M. Malarkey, AIA, in the chapter’s letter of nomination. “I have always been extraordinarily pleased with his professionalism and the care he takes in the relationships with his clients,” writes Juan Botas, PhD, who purchased a Las Cicadas townhouse Parra designed, customized, and built. “As a member of the Houston Minority Business Council and the Houston Hispanic Chamber of Commerce, Camilo serves as an outstanding role model for the students at our historically black university,” adds Prairie View A&M University School of Architecture Dean Ikhlas Sabouni, PhD. In addition, Parra’s work with the Rice Design Alliance on a competition helped to connect the north and south parts of Memorial Park, Houston’s largest.

Tania Salgado, AIA
Salgado combines “the ability to conceive and execute critical architecture in equally exacting proportion,“ lauds her nominator, J. Michael Brendle, FAIA. “[Her] unique talent stands above others in clarity, depth of thought, and leadership.” A design principal with RNL, Salgado has a refined acumen for process and research as precedents to high-quality design, writes RNL President Richard L. von Luhrte, FAIA. “She has truly excelled in every aspect of professional practice,” he writes, “from design through client development, practice management, and community service.” In addition to volunteer work with numerous Denver nonprofits, Salgado is an active leader in the AIA at the local and state levels. Currently, she serves as AIA Denver president-elect. “While Tania has attained a highly impressive list of credentials and accolades in her career, I believe her most influential contributions lie in the future,” writes 2009 AIA Colorado President-elect Mary Morissette, AIA. “Tania and I share a common commitment to increasing involvement of the young architect in the AIA.”

Michael W. Schellin, AIA
Schellin “is a very talented young practitioner who is positioning himself for leadership both as a firm principal and member of AIA,” writes James W. O’Brien, FAIA, in his nomination. “Mike’s commitment to the profession, as well as his involvement in AIA at the local and national levels, especially at such a young age, make him a person to watch in the future,” writes Greenway Group Chair James P. Cramer, Hon. AIA. In addition to his committee work with AIA Minnesota, Schellin is his region’s liaison with the national Young Architects Forum. Schellin’s nomination also included letters of support from three very different Kodet Architectural Group clients—the Deadwood, S.D., historic district; a private school in Minneapolis; and a church in Watertown, Minn. The common characteristics cited by all are his collaborative team-building and communications skills, commitment, and enthusiasm. “Mike has demonstrated team leadership, a practical problem solving approach, self-confidence, and dedication to both the task and to other members of the team,” emphasizes James Wald of the Minnehaha Academy.

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The 2009 Young Architects Award recipients will receive their awards at the AIA national convention in San Francisco during the Honors and Awards Ceremony on Thursday, April 30, from 4-5:30 p.m., event E25. They will be honored during a reception (E-28 Young Architects Forum Reception) that evening, 7–8 p.m. For more information, visit the AIA Convention Web site.

1. Matthew Bremer, AIA
A House For A Butcher & Art Maven, Long Island, N.Y. 2006, by Matthew Bremer, AIA.
2. Angela Brooks, AIA
Broadway Housing, 2006, Santa Monica, Calif., by co-designer and project architect Angela Brooks, AIA.
3. Matthew James Kreilich, AIA
Bureau of Criminal Apprehension, Northern Services Center, Bemidji, Minn. by project designer Matthew James Kreilich, AIA
4. Haril A. Pandya, AIA
Habitat for Humanity House, by Haril A. Pandya, AIA
5. Jinhee Park, AIA
Coulter Residence, Medfield, Mass., 2008, by Jinhee Park, AIA
6. Camilo Parra, AIA
Bastrop Plaza, 2006, by Camilo Parra, AIA
7. Tania S. Salgado, AIA, LEED-AP
The Blue Cube, Cherry Hills, Colo., by Tania S. Salgado, AIA, LEED-AP
8. Michael W. Schelin, AIA
St. Croix Lutheran High School, West St. Paul, Minn., by Kodet Architectural Group Ltd. For which Michael W. Schelin, AIA, served as part of the design team.