Robert Ivy FAIA assumed the position of Executive Vice President and CEO of the American Institute of Architects on February 1, 2011. Ivy took over from Paul Welch, Hon AIA who was serving as the interim Executive VP/CEO. George H. Miller, FAIA, AIA’s 2010 president said that the institute was glad to welcome Robert because he possessed the leadership skills and industry experience that the board was looking for. As the institute’s president, Ivy is based out of Washington and is responsible for 206 employees and a yearly budget of $56 million. He works with over 260 other chapters spread across the US and other countries globally to show the public what value design holds in various aspects, as well as improve the understanding of architecture.
Robert Ivy was born and raised in Columbus Mississippi. He graduated cum laude from Sewanee University with a bachelor’s degree in English then went on to get his post-graduate degree in Architecture from Tulane University. Since 1996, Robert Ivy has held the position of Editor in Chief of Architectural Record, a publication that he has turned into one of the biggest in the design and architecture industry. His leadership earned the publication the National Magazine Award for General Excellence from the American Society of Magazine Editors. Ivy was the editorial director and Vice President of McGraw-Hill Construction Media, two roles that he used to manage the family of publications that comprise of Architectural Record: China, HQ Magazine, and GreenSource: The Magazine of Sustainable Design, among others. He was named Master Architect in 2010 by Alpha Rho Chi, the only architect in the 21st century to have this honor.
Health and Design
As an author, Ivy has numerous accomplishments, including contributing to the Huffington Post. The correlation between health and design is one of his favorite topics, and he has several articles covering it. One is titled “Architects of Health” and talks about how architects can use design to encourage healthy living. He looks at the health crisis in America that is largely due to poor lifestyles and lack of exercise. Design thinking is Ivy’s solution to counter the many cases of obesity and chronic diseases. The concept involves architects teaming up with health professionals to design buildings that promote exercise. This solution requires collaboration in academia to help train medical professionals and architects who focus on improving public health.
Robert Ivy’s career has been focused on bringing architecture closer to the public and as AIA’s CEO, he has strengthened his advocacy. Ivy has been vocal about the various issues that affect the built environment, including social, environmental, and political.
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