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Lisa Shaffer, AIA Attends 2023  AIA Leadership Summit

Call for action as "Citizen Architects"

Lisa Shaffer, AIA of Alloy Architecture in Wichita attended the 2023 AIA Leadership Summit as a representative of AIA Kansas. Shaffer spent four days in Washington, D.C. learning about legislative advocacy for architecture, connecting with colleagues from around the country, and meeting with U.S. Congressmen Ron Estes and Jake LaTurner and Senators Roger Marshall and Jerry Moran. She advocated on behalf of Kansas architects and promoted two specific pieces of legislation at the national level, the Democracy in Design Act and the Resilient AMERICA Act.


In addition to advocacy on Capitol Hill, the summit challenged attendees to see themselves as "Citizen Architects"--a call to action to take on greater roles in civic advocacy within local communities. The group discussed ways of engaging with their communities as activists, whether that's through community organizing, letters to the editor, or even running for office. The charge is to advocate for the broader purposes of architecture.

"I enjoyed meeting all the wonderful members in attendance, and I am proud to have participated in my first Leadership Summit on behalf of AIA Kansas.


If you are interested in hearing more about my experience, don’t hesitate to reach out."


Lisa Shaffer, AIA, NCIDQ

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Welcome to the New 2023 AIA Kansas Board!

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Welcome from the 2023 AIA Kansas President

Ava Christie, AIA - West Star Development

Dear AIA Kansas Colleagues,


It is an honor and challenge to follow Will Chmylak, AIA as Chapter President in 2023, this Chapter’s 102nd year! Although last year began with uncertainty about how to proceed after the height of the COVID-19 Pandemic, AIA Kansas events and initiatives that ventured back to in-person gatherings were successful. As Will outlined in his 2022 Annual Report, AIA Kansas’s accomplishments remain exemplary! 


Again this year, planning of Chapter events will pursue in-person alternatives while continuing adjustments that consider pandemic-era changes, such as virtual options. A more personalized experience sought in 2022 planning and the Annual Conference at Topeka’s only boutique hotel was received well by attendees and will guide planning for this year’s Conference in Manhattan, Kansas and other Chapter events. Other annual educational and enrichment offerings by AIA Kansas this year will include the AIA Kansas Advocacy Summit at the Statehouse, the third year of the EDGE Leadership and Business Education Program at Baker University, and collaboration with NCARB to provide education for emerging professionals.


In 2023 AIA Kansas staff will continue to collaborate with our members, allied members, and other stakeholders to engage with AIA priorities such as legislative action through our Government Affairs Committee. Legislative action helps members recognize current federal tax and grant benefits for architects and the building construction industry in each state. It also ensures that the voice of Kansas architects is heard by our representatives at the Statehouse. AIA National’s realignment of all AIA Sections under a corresponding State Chapter is nearing completion so that Wichita, Flint Hills, and Topeka will be working more closely than ever with AIA Kansas to serve members. This transition will ensure that Section members continue to receive the same services and benefits they have come to expect but with the added support of AIA Kansas staff.


Last but not least, the decades-long challenge for sustainability of AIA Kansas continues in 2023 through the OneKansas campaign. This initiative is led by the AIA Kansas Chapter and seeks to gain approval by AIA National to re-assign Johnson and Wyandotte counties from Missouri back to Kansas since their misappropriation nearly 100 years ago. The OneKansas campaign seeks resolution to this issue by educating our AIA Kansas membership and others on the return of Kansas territory.


I look forward to working with the 2023 AIA Kansas Staff and Board of Directors who will give their valuable time and experience in guiding the work of the AIA KS Chapter this year and seeing and working with each of you as we accomplish the work of the AIA Kansas Chapter and it's Sections! 


Ava Christie, AIA PhD

President, AIA Kansas

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