AIA: Executive Vice President and Chief Executive Officer Christine McEntee departs AIA to lead American Geophysical Union Print
Monday, 19 April 2010 14:46

The American Institute of Architects (AIA) announced today that Executive Vice President and Chief Executive Officer Christine McEntee will leave the Institute July 23, 2010 to become Executive Director of the American Geophysical Union (AGU), an international non-profit scientific association dedicated to furthering the sciences of geophysics through individual efforts and in cooperation with other scientific organizations.

McEntee leads a staff of seasoned professionals who capably manage the AIA’s daily operations and who, along with McEntee, will assist the elected leadership of the AIA during the transition to a new executive. A search committee working under the guidance of the AIA Board Executive Committee will be formed, with a national search for candidates to be conducted by an executive search firm. McEntee will work closely with the AIA leadership and staff to ensure a smooth transition.

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“Over the past four years, Chris McEntee significantly enhanced recognition by policy makers, the media, and others that design matters, especially in the areas of sustainability and livable communities,” said AIA President George H. Miller, FAIA. “Chris is embracing an opportunity of great personal and professional interest and we wish her every future success.”

Design matters, a founding precept of the AIA, is encompassed in the activities of 280 AIA chapters in the U.S. and abroad and by the commitment to lifelong professional development of 83,000 AIA members so that the latest insights and best practices are applied to the challenges facing clients and communities. The AIA will continue to establish and uphold standards that promote architecture of quality as well as public policy positions that advocate for healthy, safe, and sustainable buildings and communities.

“My decision to accept a new position comes at a time when the AIA is strong and poised to take advantage of new opportunities that will add member value,” said McEntee. “I’m gratified that I’ve been able to make a positive contribution to the organization in my time as the staff executive, but, I know that the enduring success of the AIA mission is found in the unyielding passion and commitment of its members to help create a better built environment.”

During her tenure, the AIA marked its 150th anniversary through a series of initiatives to spark conversations about the impact of architecture on our lives. Two, in particular, focused on the contributions of architects and architecture: Blueprint for America, a nationwide community service program in 156 communities across the country where architects donated their time and expertise collaborating with citizens to address local quality of life issues, and the Shape of America, an Internet destination that encourages visitors to share their experiences with a panel of architects who highlight the importance of well known works of architecture. The anniversary also included the widely popular America’s Favorite Architecture public poll through which 150 works of architecture selected by the public ignited a robust conversation that continues today.

Additionally, McEntee increased the effectiveness of government advocacy involvement in legislation and media relations placement efforts, introduced innovations for the AIA web site and the Annual Convention, and expanded sustainability initiatives, including an integrated communications campaign explaining the role architects play in helping address climate change and the 2030 Commitment Program through which architecture firms agree to incorporate sustainability principles into their architectural practices and with their clients.

In her new position at the AGU, which begins in August, McEntee will lead a professional society that is a global leader of scientific knowledge within the Earth and space science communities and expand AGU’s global reach and scientific excellence for the benefit of humanity.