The Friend of Architecture Award is bestowed on an individual or organization that has demonstrated significant support to architecture, but is not a practitioner or architectural firm. Nomination shall be made by any AIA East Tennessee member with a minimum of 2 additional supporting signatures from members, not including employees, co-workers or staff of the nominee.

The Board evaluates candidates based on how well they meet this criterion.

Nomination shall be submitted as a single PDF file, addressed the Board President explaining the nomination.

Nominations will be considered by the AIA Board of East Tennessee. Submissions shall be reviewed individually, and discussed as a group. Each Board Member shall receive one vote. A super majority of two thirds will be required for successful award.

This honor is based on merit, there is no expectation that it is granted every year.

Previous AIA East Tennessee Friend of Architecture Award recipients:

2019 David Dewhirst

David Dewhirst was a pioneer in the early redevelopment of downtown Knoxville. His thoughtful building projects respect the historic architecture while also promoting modern adaptive reuse. David’s work will continue to inspire other responsible development and enhance the value of the Knoxville for years to come.

2018 Suzanne Wedekind

As an educator and program creator, Suzanne Wedekind has encouraged students to consider architecture and related design professions since 2004. Suzanne gained national recognition for this Chapter through her work and aided in introducing design skills earlier than ever before.

2017 Jack Neely

As an author, columnist, speaker, and tour guide, Jack Neely’s work enhances public perception of the profession and places architecture squarely in the center of the both the history and contemporary development of Knoxville as a vital form of cultural expression.

2015 Ann Bennett

Ann Bennett’s distinguished career in regional planning displays unyielding support for the preservation of Knoxville’s architectural heritage. As a regional planner, Ann’s advocacy for the preservation of historic buildings and neighborhood conservation laid the foundation for today’s strong regional historic preservation program.

2014 Madeline Rogero

As Mayor of the great City of Knoxville and through her previous accomplishments as
a planner and leader of community development efforts, Madeline Rogero’s advocacy for healthy neighborhoods, sustainable development, and civic engagement have significantly improved the quality of life for those in our region through design.

2012 Kim Trent

The Friend of Architecture Award was presented to Kim Trent, Executive Director of Knox Heritage.  Kim served with such dedication on the Knox Heritage Board that when it became time to hire their first Executive Director in 2003, she was the obvious choice.  Her commitment to the preservation of Knoxville and the surrounding area’s historic gems has led to the understanding that preservation doesn’t obstruct progress, but is progress. 

2011 Joe Johnson

As President of the University of Tennessee, Joe Johnson requested a presentation for every design project on campus- “Go show Dr. Joe.” His guidance, wisdom, and wit enhanced the University of Tennessee College of Architecture and Design through his involvement with the Dean’s Advisory Council.

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