February 1, 2013
By Jerome Leslie Eben, AIA
AIANJ Regional Director, ’11-‘13
When we were growing up we all played the game of ‘Follow the Leader’. As the AIANJ Regional Director, I had the honor to both discharge Trustees and Officers from 2012 and immediately thereafter install the Trustees and Officers for 2013, which already in full swing across the State.
This year I chose to replace the standard quote that the Institute had given to my predecessors and me to be used in the discharge/installation process which came from President Theodore Roosevelt. Instead, I sought out some other famous words that focused on a larger view of leadership and agreed with or supported the passion I believe we all have for our profession and our organization.
The leaders that were installed along with other Trustees or Officers that were in the middle of their terms were so recognized at these various events. These men and women are responsible for fostering a greater public understanding and recognition of the architectural profession. They are in fact the public face of AIA, and they will use their professional knowledge and skill to work toward solutions of local problems. In doing so, they will be assuring that there is quality architecture in our communities.
However, while the leadership group from each Section of AIA NJ and from the Executive Committee (the Chapter President and his team) will recognize, encourage and train the future leaders of AIA, and maintain high quality of leadership, we need the membership to utilize the full potential of our organizations to make them more effective. Therefore in my closing remarks I emphasized that the leadership can accomplish little without the active support and participation of every member. Each section and the Chapter have room for each member to participate in some way, shape or form. Therefore, I am requesting each of you to evaluate just how you want the help. Serve on a committee, write a newsletter article, secure a sponsor for a meeting or event, participate in a design competition, trade show, art or photography competition, and better still grow our membership, by bring a non-member to an AIA event/meeting. The list goes on for here.
Though I spoke for the membership and pledged to them your support in the coming year, I know through this article and the suggestions I made above, that you in fact will follow your leaders and get involved!
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.