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Emanuel “Chris” Welch has served as a State Representative in the Illinois General Assembly since January 2013. On January 13, 2021, Chris became the Speaker of the Illinois House of Representatives. The first Black lawmaker to hold such position. Prior to becoming Speaker, Welch served as Chair of the House Executive Committee and before that he Chaired Higher Education. All positions where he left a positive mark.
Bryan is an Architect, educator, writer, and Design Justice activist. He is the founder/Design Principal of Colloqate Design a nonprofit multidisciplinary design practice, in New Orleans, Louisiana, dedicated to expanding community access to design and creating spaces of racial, social, and cultural equity. He is a Design Critic at Harvard GSD and has led two award-winning youth community design programs.
Bryan is a founding co-organizer of the DAP (Design As Protest) Collective and Dark Matter University. He was most recently honored as one of the 2018 Fast Company Most Creative People in Business, a USC Annenberg MacArthur Civic Media Fellow, and the youngest design firm to win the Architectural League’s Emerging Voices award in 2019.
David is one of the few professionally-trained Futurists on the planet, but he still can’t predict the future. He did predict that you might have wondered….
His talks focus on the cultural and social (often humorous) implications of technological and demographic fads and trends.
Design has become a central theme running through his talks. He believes that design determines value – and the better design, the more value. If more people learned to think like designers, it could improve the ways the future is made. If designers learned to think more like futurists and explored more divergent, long-term implications, the future would benefit from that too.
This focus on design created a bit of a niche, and he's keynoted over 100 design conferences. This also led to David being on the AIA-WI board of directors and from 2010-13 as a public director on the American Institute of Architects national board. He earned an MS in Futures Research from the University of Houston, and a BA in Political Science from University of Wisconsin. He lives in Milwaukee and can see the Calatrava out his window.
Senator Nikil Saval is a father, husband, writer, and organizer. Saval has extensive experience in community and electoral organizing. In 2016, he was a leader in Senator Bernie Sanders’s presidential campaign. From this experience, Saval went on to co-found Reclaim Philadelphia, working for racial, gender, and economic justice throughout the Philadelphia area. In 2018, he was elected as Leader of Philadelphia’s Democratic Second Ward.
In his career as a writer, Saval has been a frequent contributor to The New York Times, contributing writer for The New Yorker, covering architecture, design, and housing. Saval previously served as co-editor of the literary journal n+1 and still serves on its board of directors. In 2014, Saval published his book Cubed: A Secret History of the Workplace. In Cubed, he examined the long-term evolution of the office from its roots in 19th century counting houses all the way to the cubicle, presenting a world in which workplaces, and lives of the workers within them, could be improved in the future.
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Thursday, November 4APPROVED LEARNING UNITS ARE INDICATED BELOW8:30 am Welcome Speaker of the House Welch and AIA Illinois EVP and President 8:45 am - Design Justice with Bryan Lee9:15 am - 10:15 am - Rosenwald Schools: a history of rural schoolhouses in the South with Andrew Feiler - 1 lu10:15 am- 11:00 am - Capitol Award Winner– Tierra Linda recorded tourBreakout One – choose one11:00 am – 12:00 pm - Building a Sustainable Practice with Evelyn Lee, FAIA - 1 luOrHigh Performance Case Study – Brian Imus, IL Green Alliance will moderate12:00 -12:15 am - Break Grab lunchLunch Keynote 12:30 pm – 1:30 pm - Connecting the Dots Between Us with David Zach - 1 lu Breakout Two – choose one1:30 pm – 2:30 pm - Anatomy of Indemnity and Copyright Clauses: What Architects Need to Know with Jeremy Baker/BakerLaw - 1 luOr80 years at the Corner: Using Digital Technology to Preserve Chicago’s Baseball Palace of the World with Brian Powers, AIA - 1 lu2:30 pm – Senator Nikil Saval co-sponsored by AIA Pennsylvania https://aiapa.org - 30 minutes 3:00 - 3:15 BreakBreakout Three - choose one3:15 pm – 4:15 pm –Rethinking construction delivery: How to implement technology using practice-driven research with Patrick Chopson, AIA, Co-Founder | cove.tool, Inc.- 1 HSW luOrCreating the Future of Work for Emerging Professionals - Molly Rademacher, AIA and Raquel Guzman Geara General Session4:15 - What does Climate Change Mean in Illinois? Roundtable discussion moderated by Brent Chase, Chicago Sun Times, Environment ReporterPanelists:-Christian Mitchell, Deputy Governor for Public Safety, Infrastructure, Energy & Environment-Joel Brammeier, Executive Director, Alliance for Great Lakes -Dr. Trent Ford, Illinois State Climatologist, UIUC 5:00 pm - Happy Anniversary AIA Illinois - Anniversary video Trivia/Drawings – big prizes
Jeremy S. Baker, a Chicago-based construction attorney, founded Baker Law Group LLC after nearly fifteen years at Schiff Hardin LLP, where he was a partner and a member of its national Construction Law practice. As an Adjunct Professor of Law at The John Marshall Law School, he taught an elective Construction Law course though its Center for Real Estate Law (2016, 2017, 2018). Jeremy’s practice involves project structuring across many project delivery methods, plus contract review and negotiation. He has prosecuted and defended lawsuits in over 30 state and federal court venues, but he prefers to help clients complete challenging projects by emphasizing dispute avoidance and early, cost-efficient resolution of claims. Jeremy is a graduate of the Tulane University Law School (2002) and the University of California, Santa Barbara (1999). In 2020, he was inducted as a member of the prestigious Society of Illinois Construction Attorneys (SOICA).
Joel oversees all aspects of the organization, leads a team of professionals across five locations, along with a base of more than 15,000 volunteers around the region dedicated to protecting clean water and building a sustainable future for the Great Lakes. Since 2001, Joel has become a leading voice on invasive species and water protection issues across the Great Lakes region. He has testified before Congress on invasive species solutions and advises state governors and Canadian provincial premiers on the implementation of the Great Lakes Compact, a binational agreement that ensures Great Lakes water stays in the basin.
Joel has overseen the longest period of sustained growth in the organization’s history and the Alliance has earned a 4-star rating from Charity Navigator every year since he became President and CEO in 2010.
Brett Chase reports on environmental protection, pollution and public health under a grant from The Chicago Community Trust. He is a former investigative reporter for the Better Government Association, and, before that, worked at Bloomberg News, the Milwaukee Journal Sentinel and Crain’s Chicago Business. He has a journalism degree from Drake University in Des Moines, Iowa, and has taught journalism at Loyola University in Chicago.
Focusing on the crossover between architecture and technology, Patrick Chopson leads cove.tool, a web-based design software for buildings using machine learning and automation to drive decision making. As Co-Founder, he oversees product development and research. A graduate of Georgia Tech with a Master's in High Performance Buildings, he is a licensed architect with over 17 years of experience in architecture, research, and mechanical engineering firms. Prior to cove.tool, he co-founded a successful building performance consulting firm Pattern r+d. Multiple publications include Architect Magazine, Tech Crunch, Site Selection, ArchDaily, and more.
The Illinois State Climatologist provides weather and climate data, maps, and information for Illinois farmers, government agencies and policymakers, and all citizens.
The State Climatologist also conducts research on past climate events, monitors current conditions, and studies possible future climate change and acts as the state’s authoritative spokesperson on climate science.
By state statute, this position is based at the Illinois State Water Survey at the University of Illinois. Previous Illinois State Climatologists were Dr. Jim Angel (1996–2018), Wayne Wendland (1981–1996), and Stan Changnon (1972–1980).
Raquel Guzman Geara is an architect with a background in planning, architectural and design strategies. With experience in diverse project types, she has a passion for human centered design while creating solutions that impact the wellbeing of others. Her experience of living in different countries (Being born in the Dominican Republic and moving to the U.S. for college) has exposed her to different cultures and perspectives which she always uses as a tool for her projects. Raquel has a passion for education, mentorship, and helping communities in need. She is a founding mentor of Arquitina, an organization dedicated to raising the 1% of licensed Latina/x architects in the USA. She is also co-chair of AIA YAF and serves in the AIA Interior Architecture KC. Outside of this, Raquel enjoys cooking, travelling and reading.
A licensed architect in the state of California, Evelyn has over 15 years of experience working with individuals and companies that are looking to reshape their future.
She has been a featured keynote speaker, panelist, and moderator at national conferences and symposiums. Her topics focus on developing knowledge leadership, organizational change management, capacity building, stakeholder engagement, and strategic approaches to put design thinking to work in life and in practice. She also serves on the advisory council to ZeroSixty, an accelerator for the AEC Industry and is the first female Treasurer to AIA National‘s Board
When not working on the Practice of Architecture, Evelyn works as the first-ever Senior Experience Designer at Slack Technologies.
When Christian Mitchell talks about government—“the largest enterprise we have together; if we give up on government, we give up on ourselves”—it seems fitting that the legislative district of this former community organizer includes part of the area once represented by another community guy turned state legislator: Barack Obama.
Mitchell has worked for everyone from Illinois Attorney General Lisa Madigan to Cook County Board President Toni Preckwinkle to, yes, Obama. Soon, he will join J.B. Pritzker’s administration as deputy governor for legislative relations and other matters.
“At a time of great cynicism in politics, Christian is a breath of fresh air,” says Obama counselor David Axelrod. “He’s skilled and pragmatic enough to get things done, yet deeply principled. As he’s proven, he’s willing to stand up to great pressure for things he believes in.”
Brian Powers is a Project Architect at SmithGroup with three decades of planning, design and delivery of complex building types focusing on healthcare, academic and assembly projects in North America and abroad. Brian is extremely committed to fostering development of architecture by combining innovation, sustainability, and technology in a dynamic team environment.
Brian is a licensed architect, earning a Bachelor of Architecture from Auburn University, and is a member of the American Institute of Architects and is a LEED Accredited Professional.
Molly is a licensed Architect and creative designer with a strong background in material exploration with aptitude for team, client and community collaboration allowing holistic solutions which address brand, function and environment of space. Since moving to Chicago in 2015, she has been highly involved in the AIA at both a regional and national level and currently serves as the AIA Illinois Regional Associate Director and EP Network Chair. She also volunteers for organizations like Architreasures. As a maker, Molly enjoys sewing, quilting, building and refinishing furniture and has a background in ceramics.
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