The Spring 2020 issue of Context focuses on the practice of working together to achieve more than we can as individuals.

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June 17, 2020
Chapter News

Holding Ourselves Accountable

By Rebecca Johnson

In the 12 days since AIA Philadelphia and the Center for Architecture and Design issued our statement denouncing police violence against Black Americans, our Board and Committee leadership is re-evaluating our organization as a whole, as well as, our programming to make sure we are accountable to the commitments we made in that statement. While we are still working out the details of our next steps, I wanted to share some of the areas of work that are ongoing, where you can attend programming or volunteer in another capacity. If you are interested in putting some energy into both the Chapter's future, as well as our communities' future, then please reach out to Rebecca Johnson at [email protected] to express interest and we'll connect you with those opportunities.

  • The Board of Directors is conducting a governance and program review of all of our programs and our organizing documents to identify opportunities to forward our commitments to dismantle systemic racism and advance justice.
  • Our Equity, Diversity and Inclusion Committee will start hosting workshops in July. Stay tuned for details on that.
  • Our Advocacy Committee is looking for members to join our efforts to advocate for Equitable Communities, in addition to Climate Action and Design Education.
  • The Chapter and the Center are part of a multi-organization and institutional effort to advance Equity, Diversity, and Inclusion in architectural education from K through Graduation with the goal of bringing design education to every public school student in Philadelphia and to diversity the architectural and allied design professions.
  • The Center has pivoted it's Architecture in Education program to virtual content and is engaging with over 750 primary and middle school students this summer.
  • The Community Design Collaborative is seeking volunteer design professionals to participate in the Design SWAT Team initiative, which is providing quick-response design solutions to nonprofits and small businesses that are rebuilding and reopening to serve their communities. To volunteer, contact Heidi Segall Levy.  
  • And many other Committees, COTE, Historic Preservation, and Women in Architecture are all having conversations about how their work can be more about advancing justice and dismantling systemic racism.  

If you are interested in any of these in-process efforts, please reach out to Rebecca for AIA or CFAD, and Heidi Segall Levy for opportunities with the Community Design Collaborative.


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