3.3 min readPublished On: January 4, 2017Categories: News, Newsletters

At the time of writing this, it’s the end of December 2016, and the end of my term as AIA President. I really enjoyed this year as the head of the Board and the Chapter President. I look forward to simply attending Chapter events and seeing AIASMC members in 2017!

I had goals at the beginning of the term that I’ve strived to meet although I must admit the goals evolved into other things as the year progressed. One goal I had was to communicate AIA information and news from the larger organization and relay the news to you about what AIA National and AIA California Council is doing on our behalf to benefit the profession of Architecture – essentially to answer that question “What is AIA doing for me?” I know as a board we’ll continue to report to you on news from the AIA in the coming year. As we saw in the post-election news from AIA members across the country, there are many issues that affect our profession – and that will continue to be the case in 2017. In fact, if you didn’t know, there was a letter written to Robert Ivy at AIA National by me and by David Regester of AIA Santa Clara Valley as a joint message in response to his letter to the new Trump Administration. There was a lot of dialogue about Robert’s message so we felt compelled to join the conversation. I’m happy to report that today David and I got a response letter and a Guidance Statement from Robert and I’ll be sharing that with the Chapter right away.

Which leads me to another goal I had which was to partner with our neighboring Chapter in Santa Clara Valley, particularly since David and I are colleagues and friends and served as President during the same year, all the while sitting a few cubicles away from each other at HPS Architects. The shared events were fun, challenging, successful, and invigorating for the Chapter. The previous year we had partnered with AIA San Francisco. I look forward to 2017 as our new President plans more enriching events for us with our neighboring colleagues!

The big news as we end 2016 is that we said goodbye to René Peraza, our Executive Director. René has done a wonderful job supporting the Chapter from the little office in downtown San Mateo. He has kept things running, corresponded with our friends, neighbors, & Members, kept the books, paid the bills, recorded our Learning Units, and done lots of graphic design for the many events. René has personally carpooled people to our tours, he has prepared us for our board meetings, and greeted many of our event attendees by name! René is on to a new full time position in Marketing at a firm in San Francisco. He will truly be missed but we wish him all the best — Thanks, René!

We have hired a new Executive Director and she has been in training with René to take over in January. You’ll have a chance to meet her in person in February (she will not be available at our January 25th fellowship/dinner) and I’m sure she’ll send the members an email shortly! Her name is Jackie Tanner and she lives in Portola Valley and is very excited to be working with our Chapter. She has experience as an administrative assistant, in the volunteer world of art in Albuquerque, and as a small business owner. The skill set required in this background uniquely qualifies her to work with and support our Chapter. Welcome, Jackie!

As always, if you’d like to get involved in 2017, give us a call at the AIA office or email me anytime.

And with that, I pass the gavel to Heather Young!

We look forward to seeing you at a future AIASMC Chapter event in 2017!

Margaret Williams, AIA

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