Thomas U. Walter Award

The Thomas U. Walter award is presented annually to a current member of the architectural profession and is intended to recognize their contributions to the architectural community through their service to the American Institute of Architects and other related professional organizations. Recipients for this award will have distinguished themselves amongst their colleagues through service to the ‘Institute’ on a local, state, or national level. Candidates for this award shall be proponents of good design practices, active advocates for the profession, and have demonstrated a commitment to community service.

Created in celebration of the AIA’s sesquicentennial anniversary (150 years), this award is presented in honor of Thomas Ustick Walter. Born in Philadelphia, Walter received his architectural training while under the employment of William Strickland. He began practicing architecture in 1830 and became one of the founding members of the AIA in 1857, and later served as the organization's second president. Walter first came to national recognition for his Greek revival design of the original buildings at Girard College for Orphans. His most noteworthy project was the design of the central dome and the flanking chambers for the Senate and House of Representatives at the United States Capitol in 1850. Walter served as the Capitol architect from 1850 until 1865 and is considered by many to have been the dean of American architecture between the death of Benjamin Latrobe and the work of H.H. Richardson.

The recipient of this award is selected annually by the members of the Executive Committee of AIA Philadelphia. Outside nominations for this award may be considered by the Executive Committee. The Thomas U. Walter award is presented during the Chapter's Induction ceremony each January.

Previous award winners:

2021 - Tiffany A. Millner, AIA, NOMA
2020 - Robert Kelly, AIA, IDSA
2019 - Michael Spain, Associate AIA
2018 - Elizabeth C. Masters, AIA, AFAAR
2017 - James W. Rowe, AIA
2016 - Keith Mock, AIA
2015 - Don Jones, FAIA
2014 - John Claypool, FAIA
2013 - John Fox Hayes, FAIA
2012 - Charles Dagit Jr., FAIA
2011 - Jerry Roller, AIA
2010 - Michael Prifti, FAIA
2009 - Louis de Moll, FAIA
2008 - Peter Piven, FAIA
2007 - Susan Maxman, FAIA