AIA New Jersey Member, Erin Sharp-Newton, Associate AIA, Featured in a FREE Behavioral Health Design Program on May 3

April 30, 2022

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AIA New Jersey Member, Erin Sharp-Newton, Associate AIA, Featured in a FREE Behavioral Health Design Program on May 3


Behavioral Health Design 101

AIA NYC the Center for Architecture in New York Design for Health Committee at

Session on May 3, 2022 (6-7 pm EST) Credits: 1 AIA/HSW 


AIA NJ Members Can Check Out As A Guest and May Make A Donation If Desired. 


This educational session will provide an overview of the history (past), current focus & challenges (present) related to creating safety and security. Additionally, this session will share principles & examples for visioning the future for Behavioral Health Design. Speakers Erin Sharp-Newton from Posen Architects and Kimberly McMurray from BHFC Design Consultants have extensive experience in this market segment and have developed a presentation to educate participants about this relevant topic, including the COVID Pandemic and how architecture and design are responding to behavioral health needs within our communities

Participants in this session will learn about:

  1. HISTORY: A brief architectural history of psychiatric & mental health facilities.
  2. PRESENT: Current data regarding mental health information, facts & figures.
  3. SAFETY + SECURITY: Guidelines for creating a safe environment for both the patient and staff through integration of security in the design process.
  4. PRINCIPLES + VISION:  Creating therapeutic environments design principles, and understanding the changes on the horizon that impact the built environment for behavioral and mental health facilities.


SPEAKER: Erin Sharp-Newton, Associate AIA, M. Arch, Fitwel
Healthcare Design Director | Behavioral Health Leader | POSEN Architects

Erin Sharp-Newton is the Healthcare Design Director at Posen Architects and a UDMH Fellow. Erin brings years of recognized local, national and international design experience into the world of design with a special passion for how environments impact mental health. Her unique experience and advocacy contribute a sharp, intense, and humanistic approach to architecture, design, and culture. 

Supporting grass roots to global solutions, Erin also serves the Department of Health & Human Services as Chair for the Local Advisory Committee on Drugs & Alcohol, serves the AIA NJ Equity In Architecture Committee, is the AIA NJ Women in Architecture CNJ Liaison, a Trustee for the AIA CNJ, served as Vice-President of the Executive Board of the Hunterdon Drug Awareness Program, and on the Morristown Mayor’s Wellness Committee.  She has received acknowledgments throughout her career such as the NJ Biz 50 Best Women in Business Award and recognition by the Charter High School of Architecture and Design.  Erin holds a Master’s Degree in Architecture from UCLA and a Master’s in Design from Domus Academy in Milan, Italy. She was a Creative Director with Cibic Workshop in Milan, has been active with major architecture/design schools such as the Domus Academy, Milan Polytecnico, and Venice Polytecnico, Sci-Arc, UCLA, Woodbury, the Art Institute, Drexel, Moore College of Art, Cornell University, and others. She is a regular contributor to


Behavioral Health Facility Consulting, LLC | Principal

Kimberly McMurray, Principal of Behavioral Health Facility Consulting, LLC a 100% Woman Owned Enterprise is an expert in behavioral health design, is a practicing healthcare planner and architect with over 35 years of leadership experience in healthcare on academic, non-profit, and private medical campus architecture. McMurray has a decade of experience from the owner’s perspective and collaborating with multidisciplinary user groups, thereby embracing a unique perspective and response to client needs; applying her knowledge of clinical operations, evidence-based design, lean operational planning; to lead projects from programming, concept development through design.

Kimberly is a Registered Architect, National Council Architectural Registration Boards, has her Evidence Based Design Certification from the Center for Health Design. She holds a Bachelor of Architecture, from Arizona State University, and a Master of Business Administration, University of Alabama at Birmingham.


MODERATOR: Elizabeth Sullivan, Associate AIA, LEED GA, EDAC
Healthcare Practice Leader | NK Architects

Elizabeth Sullivan is a Healthcare Practice Leader at NK Architects in NYC, with headquarters in
Morristown NJ. Elizabeth has extensive management and medical planning experience. As a healthcare planner, she specializes in medical master planning, small-and large-scale facilities, and complex multi-phased projects. She manages and coordinates with leadership, reconciling key stakeholder and user requirements with applicable codes and guidelines to achieve design solutions that meet programmatic needs and translate into cohesive planning concepts. 

Additionally, Elizabeth worked as both a Project Manager and later as a Director of Facilities and Real Estate Planning for Montefiore Health System in New York. She has unique inside experience working as the client and understands the entire project process from the owner’s Perspective. Elizabeth is the AIA Co-Chair for the Design for Health Committee at the Center for Architecture in New York, was an Associate Principal at Perkins Eastman. Elizabeth holds both her Masters and Bachelor’s degrees in Architecture from Tulane University. She is Evidence-Based design Accreditation Certification (EDAC) from the Center for Health Design.

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