AIA Adopts New Governance Structure

Delegates at the American Institute of Architects' (AIA) recent convention voted to adopt bylaw amendments that restructure the organization's governance. Changes include shrinking the size of the board of directors and adding a Strategic Council, established to inform the board and other AIA bodies of important professional issues.

The current board proposed the changes months ago as part of its Repositioning Initiative. "This new governance structure will make sure the AIA can speak with a clearer voice, move quicker to address its members' concerns, and better represent its membership," 2014 AIA president Helene Combs Dreiling, FAIA, said in a statement.

The national board will retain its current function of providing operational and fiscal management of the organization but will reduce its size from more than 50 to 16 or fewer members. The board will comprise:

• Four Elected Officers (elected by the delegates at the annual convention)
  - AIA President (one-year term)
  - First Vice President/President-Elect (one-year term, then automatically succeeding to the Presidency)
  - Secretary (two-year term)
  - Treasurer (two-year term)

• Six to Eight At-Large Directors
  - Three At-Large Directors elected by the delegates at the annual convention (three-year term)
  - Three At-Large Directors elected by the Strategic Council (three-year term)
  -As many as two At-Large Directors selected by the President but subject to Board approval (terms no longer than the selecting President's term)

• Associate Director (two-year term)
• A CACE Director (one-year term)
• A Student Director
• The AIA's EVP/Chief Executive Officer (a non-voting member)

All current national board members will be allowed to serve the entirety of their terms. However, once their term has expired, or a member resigns, this position will be eliminated. Meanwhile, the new AIA Strategic Council will "look forward to investigate emerging issues in business, practice, and design that our members will be asking about in the months and years ahead," AIA EVP/CEO Robert Ivy said in a statement. "Cooperatively with the board of directors, it will promote a relevant strategic plan for our present and future needs."

The group also will determine its own leadership structure and can form committees and ad hoc workgroups, subject to board approval. The council, which will have no more than 60 members, will be made up of:

• Current and Former AIA Officers
• Approximately 35 regional representatives (staggered three-year term)
• An International Region Representative (three-year term)
• An Associate Representative (term to be determined by the board)
• A Student Representative (term to be determined by the board)
• A CACE Representative (term to be determined by the board)
• 10 At-Large Representatives (staggered two-year term) chosen by the council