March 2, 2010AIA-NJ has hit the ground running in 2010, starting in January with the AIA-NJ Awards Dinner and many local section Inaugural Dinners to install local officers. February began with the annual trip to Washington DC for AIA Grassroots during which we experienced one of the year’s worst snowstorms. This did not stop AIA-NJ from getting to the Hill and pressing issues important to our members which are well outlined in AIA’s “Blueprint for Economic Recovery”. Directly affecting local business, AIA-NJ pressed our Senator’s to support a federal bailout of the ailing Unemployment Insurance Fund to avoid unfair penalization of New Jersey’s small businesses to replenish the fund depleted by former administrations’ use of surpluses for other State needs throughout the years.
Locally, AIA-NJ has been intimately involved with proposed legislation S239 to incorporate green building standards in school construction and the development of interim green building standards recommended to the Governor’s office. Our focus is to ensure the State provides clear direction to the design community by establighing one, consistent, implementable standard, optimizes sustainability by setting the bar appropriately and including verification of achievement, and recognizes the key role architect’s play in successfully and cost effectively integrating sustainability in to School construction, or any project type. You can review Bill S239 at the State web site. This is precedent setting legislation and AIA-NJ has become an important and central voice in creating a unified green building standard for NJ.
Our Mega Issues, which include Sustainability, the Architect as Lead professional, Value of the Architect to the public, and Zoning Ridiculousness are the central focus of our legislative, education, and implementation efforts this year. I am pleased to say the month has very busy with our committees and Mega-Issue champions gearing up for events throughout the year around the Mega Issues both locally and at the State level. Most notable of these is the East Coast Green conference taking place in conjunction with AIA-NJ Design Day September 16th and 17th at Bally’s in Atlantic City. This event will not only provide educational opportunities for our members but will showcase our expertise to the world on key issues such as sustainability and carbon neutrality that will help expand your firms’ job opportunities.
Finally, AIA-NJ is your voice. We have a focused and full agenda for 2010 but we encourage your comments, feedback, and involvement to make the most of your membership and help us represent the profession to the fullest extent possible in the State and Nationally. I would like to thank all members who completed the Member Survey, your ideas and opinions are important on what direction we, the officers of AIA-NJ, take the organization over the next few years. Please look at the committees on our web site and get involved in the things you are passionate about. Look for more information on all events in your e-Bulletin’s and Newsletters. To get involved with the mega issues, please visit our website.
I look forward to a prosperous, safe, and sustainable year with you all!
Jason Kliwinski, AIA, LEEDap
2010 AIA-NJ President
Architects are skilled professionals who listen to you, interpret your wishes, help realize your building dreams, and add value at every stage of a project.