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Legislative Day   2024 Convention & Trade Show


2023 AIA Florida Convention & Trade Show Speakers

(In Alphabetical Order)


Charles Allen, Jr., AIA, NCARB
Senior Forensic Architect
Liberty Building Forensics Group

Charles Allen, Jr., AIA, brings over 20 years of architectural design experience in developing design concepts and construction documents for high-rise condominium towers, universities and public-school facilities, commercial buildings and single family custom homes. Over the last 11 years, Allen’s experience has centered around identifying, documenting and assessing building envelope and product defects and their relationship to moisture and mold problems. His technical knowledge of the designed construction process and experience analyzing and identifying building failures has positioned him as an expert who can differentiate between design and construction deficiencies related to wall cladding systems, window systems, waterproofing and roofing.

Dr. Diana Anderson

Diana C. Anderson, MD, MArch, ACHA, OAQ is a board-certified healthcare architect, internist, and board-certified in geriatrics. As a “dochitect”, Diana combines educational and professional experience in both medicine and architecture. She has worked on hospital design projects globally and is widely published in both architectural and medical journals, books, and the popular press. She is a frequent speaker about the impacts of healthcare design on patient outcomes, staff satisfaction, and related topics. A co-founder of the Clinicians for Design group, this international network of leaders seeks to inspire and accelerate the design of environments and systems. A past Fellow of the Harvard Medical School Center for Bioethics, Diana explores the ethics of built space. As a Principal at Jacobs, Diana provides thought leadership at the intersection of design and health. She is also a principal investigator research fellow in geriatric neurology at the VA Boston Healthcare System.

Craig Aquart, AIA, NOMA, CSI
M.C. Harry and Associates, Inc.

Craig Aquart, AIA, is a managing principal of MCHarry Associates, a 65-year-old Miami architectural firm that specializes in public sector projects. Aquart has over 30 years of experience in the industry and is best known for his passion for the community and the profession.­ This is best demonstrated through his leadership and commitment to the Architects in the Making (AIM) Program where he mentors young students exploring architecture as a possible career. Aquart realized that educating middle and high school students about architecture is vital in the industry’s future and he is especially determined to improve diversity and inclusivity in the profession. On observing the lack of Black Americans presence in the industry, he began the Black Architects in the Making (BAM) program in 2016. BAM consists of dedicated professionals who immerse themselves in existing educational programs in communities where people of color live, learn and play to enhance student’s knowledge about architecture. BAM has an active mentorship program for high school, college students and architecture interns who have shown keen desire to pursue architecture as a career. BAM also provides scholarships to deserving students of architecture from underserved communities. Aquart was president of South Florida NOMA in 2020 and past president of AIA Miami.

Randy Atlas, FAIA, Ph.D., CCP, CPTED
Atlas Safety & Security Design, Inc.

Randy Atlas, FAIA, at Atlas Safety & Security Design, Inc. is an independent, non-vested, architectural security design consulting firm which provides consulting and design services to architects, owners, and developers in the private and public governmental sectors. We specialize in the planning, design, and construction of criminal justice facilities, building security, anti-terrorism and infrastructure protection design, safety design, and accessibility features in all types of buildings such as apartment buildings, office buildings, shopping centers and plazas, parks and recreation, parking garages and lots, nightclubs and restaurants, schools and universities, jails, prisons, courthouses, and police facilities.

Chris Bettinger
Oldcastle Coastal and FC&PA

Chris Bettinger is a 1986 graduate of the University of Michigan School of Architecture. Bettinger has a bachelor’s degree in business from the University of Michigan and has 20 years’ experience in masonry specification. Bettinger is a member of the Central Florida Chapter of the Masonry Association of Florida (MAF). Since 2011, he has served on the board of directors of the MAF. Bettinger has chaired the ProMasonry & Awards Committees since 2012. This is his seventh year presenting at AIA Florida’s State Convention. Over the past seven years, he has issued over 1,800 CEU’s to AIA Members in Florida. Bettinger is a featured speaker at the National Home Builders Show & Southeast Builders Conference. He lives in Winter Springs, Florida with his wife Jamie and sons Kyle and Aaron.


Tara Blythe, SPHR
Chief People Officer
Infortech, Inc.

Tara Blythe serves as chief people officer for Infotech, Inc., a pioneer of innovation providing software solutions that advance and automate construction. In this role she leads organizational development, people operations, innovation and communications helping to cultivate the people-centric culture that has been present since its founding. Blythe holds a Senior Professional in Human Resources (SPHR) certification as well as degrees in business management, psychology and human resources culminating in a Ed.S. in Leadership and Organizational Development. She has over 20 years of leadership experience in the areas of organizational strategy and workforce development. As an organizational development practitioner with experience across industries, she is an accomplished facilitator, curriculum designer, and consultant specializing in people operations, leadership, innovation, change management and strategic planning.

Daniel Bolojan
Assistant Professor
Florida Atlantic University

Daniel Bolojan is an Assistant Professor, School of Architecture at Florida Atlantic University, focusing on the application of computational design and deep learning strategies in architecture and architectural design process. Over the years, he has taught several design studios and seminars at the Institute of Structure and Design-University of Innsbruck, Florida International University Miami and conducted numerous international workshops and conference workshops, dealing with the application of complex systems and Neural Networks in architectural design.

He is currently a Ph.D. candidate at the University of Applied Arts, Institute of Architecture, Vienna – Austria. Daniel received his B.Arch. and master’s degree in Architecture from the University of Applied Arts, Institute of Architecture, Vienna – Austria, where he studied under the late architect Zaha Hadid and Patrik Schumacher at the Zaha Hadid Vienna Studio. He later joined the research project “Agent-Based Parametric Semiology” (Research Grant Funding- PEEK – FWF. Der Wissenshaftsfonds) as Research Fellow under the supervision of Lead Researcher: Patrik Schumacher. The research explores agent-based systems as agent-based life process simulations (architectural crowds) in order to operationalize the semantic layer within the design process, where the semiological code is defined in terms of the agent’s behavioral rules when interacting with a variety of spatial features.

Barbara White Bryson, FAIA, ED.D, MBA
Bryson Breakthrough Strategies

Barbara White Bryson, FAIA, offers specific guidance to industry stakeholders to succeed in achieving project-related predictable outcomes by focusing on culture rather than process. This includes selecting the right team members by hiring and firing bravely, valuing psychological safety, leading with values, practicing respect and transparency, fostering empowerment to make decisions at the right level at the right time, and more.

Nathan Butler, FAIA, LEED AP
Office Director / Principal

Nathan Butler, FAIA, is a partner and Office Director for HKS Orlando. He focuses on understanding and achieving client’s goals across a diverse range of project types. Drawn to architecture by its challenging and dynamic nature, Butler enjoys blending creativity and beauty with functional and practical needs.

Andrew Chin
Associate Dean
Florida A&M University

Andrew Chin is an associate dean at Florida A&M University (FAMU) School of Architecture + Engineering Technology.­ Since 1991, he has taught design studios, thesis research and urban design classes at the University of Florida, Georgia Institute of Technology and FAMU.­ He earned his Bachelor of Design and Master of Architecture at the University of Florida and a Master of Science in Urban & Regional Planning at Florida State University.­­­

Dr. Joseph Choma, Ph.D.
Director and Professor
Florida Atlantic University

Joseph Choma, Ph. D­is Director of the School of Architecture and Professor of Architecture at Florida Atlantic University.­ Joseph is also the Founder and Director of the Design Topology Lab, an interdisciplinary practice which conducts design research and provides consultation relating to material innovation, unconventional means and methods of construction, and the role of geometry in the built environment. Current topics of exploration include foldable structures and materials, lightweight deployable shelters, ultra-thin formwork for concrete casting, stay-in-place formwork for shell structures and concrete slabs, and advancements in natural fiber textiles. As a researcher, he uses mathematics, folding, structure and materials as generative design devices to imagine new ways to design and build more sustainably. ­He has received awards from both the American Institute of Architects and the American Composites Manufacturers Association.­ His recent material explorations have been noted by Composites World Magazine as “spearheading research into the use of foldable composites”. ­He is the inventor of Foldable Composite Structures – U.S. Patent Number 10,994, 468.­ In short, he invented a technique that allows fiberglass to fold by hand – similar to a sheet of paper.

John J. Clark, AIA, NCARB
South Florida Community Land Trust

John Clark, AIA advances the profession by connecting and evaluating the diverse voices of his peers. Steeped in community initiatives, his design projects have distinct local, cultural, and social relevance. Both an imaginative young designer and a technically skilled architect, Clark’s meaningful contributions represent the highest standards for young architects. In 2018, John became the youngest licensed architect in New Mexico and one of the youngest Latino architects in the country.

David Corban, AIA, LEED, AP
David Corban Architect, PLLC

David Corban, AIA, founded David Corban Architect, PLLC in 2009, in the middle of the recession. He has practiced architecture for over 25 years is Southwest Florida. Corban graduated from Mississippi State University School of Architecture where he studied under Samuel Mockbee, founder of Rural Studio and recipient of the AIA Gold Medal.­

Gerald “JJ” Creadon
Executive Vice President of Operations

Gerald “JJ” Creadon was named executive vice president, operations, in July 2022. An accomplished leader in the high-tech global manufacturing services industry, Creadon is responsible for the operational performance of Jabil's 200,000-plus employees in 100 sites across 30 countries. In addition to operations, he drives Jabil’s commitments to exceptional execution; quality and lean disciplines; strong EHS standards; and development of cutting-edge factory of the future initiatives. Prior to this role, Creadon served as senior vice president, global operations since March 2019, overseeing the operations, P&L management, and organizational and strategic improvements of the 42 sites within Jabil’s Electronics Manufacturing Services (EMS) division. Creadon first joined Jabil in 1995 and has held roles of increasing leadership, including vice president, global business operations; vice president, global business units; and senior vice president, global business units. He holds a bachelor’s degree in business administration from the University of Phoenix and an MBA from the University of Florida’s Warrington School of Business.




Melissa Daniel, Assoc. AIA
Project Manager
Baltimore City Schools

Melissa Daniel, Assoc. AIA, is a tireless advocate for encouraging and empowering women in architecture. For nine years, as a senior designer at Washington, D.C.’s Karn Charuhas Chapman & Twohey, Melissa worked on critical projects for federal agencies such as the Department of Defense.­ Since 2013, Daniel has ensured that women in architecture have an established platform to tell their stories. She founded the Women in Archtiecture Series for the D.C. metro area, developed fluency with social media and web platforms to boost her storytelling and empowerment capabilities and served as AIA northern Virginia’s AIA Women’s Leadership Summit executive co-chair to engage the membership of a number of locat AIA chapters to examine and discuss business, politics and family life. In 2018 Melissa was the associates award recipient.


David L. Dodge, CSI, CDT
VP-Business & Code Development

Dodge has been involved in the construction industry since 1975. With an extensive background in project estimating and management and a bachelor’s degree in business management, Dodge soon realized a great deal of success in building product marking and sales. Within this venue he found his passion – building code development and architectural design compliance. Since 1988, Dodge has assisted architectural firms in understanding and implementing the provisions of the model codes as they pertain to fire and life safety. His particular focus is on the fire door industry, promoting cutting edge technology to resolve code compliance challenges.


George Dubose, CGC, CIEC, MRSA
Liberty Building Forensics Group

George DuBose brings over 30 years of experience in building forensics, focusing on failures related to mold and moisture issues. His knowledge of the design and construction process and numerous publications and lectures in the industry, including EPA/ASHRAE, NCARB, and Disney, have positioned him as an expert. DuBose speaks to the nuances of moisture failures, the technical side of the design and construction process, and the pitfalls that can cause moisture and mold problems in a building. Domestic and global clients have retained DuBose on some of the most complicated building failures in the world. DuBose has provided expert witness services for clients pursuing and defending claims related to mold and moisture design deficiencies, construction defects, a combination of the design and construction defects, property/casualty and builders risk claims and subrogation efforts. These matters have included a contractor builder’s risk claim for a $9 million ductwork mold problem, a $15 million developer claim against the contractor for a 52-story building moisture problem, a general contractor claim against subcontractors for an $18 million water intrusion failure in a 12 building apartment complex, an over $100 million hotel building envelope and HVAC system moisture failure in Southeast Asia, defense of a subcontractor on a more than $40 million building envelope claim, and the Martin County $24.5 million ­claim against the contractor for a moisture and mold problem in a courthouse and constitutional office building.


Jeremy Foley
Athletic Director Emeritus
University of Florida

Jeremy Foley was an award-winning athletic director for the Florida Gators Division I sports program at the University of Florida in Gainesville, Florida from 1992-2016.­ He semi-retired and became an emeritus athletic director focusing on fundraising for the school.­ He served as the chief financial officer of the University of Athletic Association, a private nonprofit corporation responsible for the administration and financial management of the Florida Gators sports program.


Beverly Frank, AIA
BFrank Studio, Inc.

Beverly Frank, AIA, is the president of the Florida Association of the American Institute of Architects (AIA Florida) and the principal of BFrank Studio.­ She is an architect whose work spans multiple Florida public universities, municipal and civic work.­ Frank's Tampa bay based firm is a minority and woman owned firm that supports human service programs and leads commercial and institutional projects throughout the state. Frank is first-generation Korean American and is the first Asian-American woman to lead AIA Florida.


Michael Halflants, FAIA
Design Principal
Hallifants + Pichette Architects

Michael Halflants, FAIA, design principal, Halflants+Pichette started his architectural education in Brussels at the Institut Supérieur de St Luc. He later earned a masters at the University of Florida, where he was awarded the gold medal, the college’s highest design honor. Upon graduation, Halflants was a project designer with the Polshek Partnership in New York City. In that capacity, he drew designs for theaters and offices in Manhattan and for the Kansas University Spencer Museum. Working in a joint venture with Arata Isozaki’s Tokyo office, he worked on the Brooklyn Museum addition. In 2018, Halflants was recognized with the AIA Florida Medal of Honor for Design, the highest honor that AIA Florida can bestow upon an architect in the state. As full professor at the University of South Florida, he teaches graduate design studios, urban design, tropical design, and the modern housing course. Halflants has lectured on housing and tropical design including in Bogota, Singapore, and Bangkok. He is a native French speaker from Belgium.


Bill Hercules, FAIA
WJH Health

Bill Hercules, FAIA, inspires healthcare leadership teams by shaping their future places of care.­ He founded WJH Health, a global consultancy that resolves the place of care at the nexus mission, performance, and experience. Hercules is the only practicing global triple Fellow in the American Institute of Architects (AIA), the American College of Healthcare Architects (ACHA) and the American College of Healthcare Executives (ACHE). He is a global expert in healthcare design with 115 printed and spoken publications. Hercules is past president of the ACHA and current leads the well-being study for the national AIA Strategic Council.


Michael “Bret” Hood
21st Century Learning & Consulting
JLI Leadership Trainer

Michael “Bret” Hood is a financial crime, ethics, money laundering and leadership expert with 25 years’ experience in the Federal Bureau of Investigation. During his career, Hood has worked on some of the most infamous cases in American history to include 9/11, the Oklahoma City Bombing and the multi-billion-dollar HealthSouth fraud case. Because of his experience, Hood was chosen to be an adviser when the FBI created their executive leadership development programs as well as being chosen to be a leadership instructor at the FBI’s National Academy, a 10-week college program for law enforcement executives from all over the world.­Hood has been qualified as a financial crimes and money laundering expert in the Middle District of Florida as well as the Eastern District of Missouri. He is a four-time winner of the United States Attorney’s Office Special Agent of the Year award for his work in financial crime and money laundering. In addition, Hood has received two commendations from the FBI Director for Leadership and Innovation.


Brooks + Scarpa

Jeffrey E. Huber, FAIA, ASLA, NCARB, LEED AP is a principal and Florida studio manager at Brooks + Scarpa Architects. He is also an associate professor at the Florida Atlantic University School of Architecture. Huber’s work combines ecological, landscape, urban, and architectural design with a focus on resiliency and adaptation. His design and research have garnered over 75 national and international design awards and has been published in numerous books and periodicals including Architect Magazine, Residential Architect, Metropolis, The Plan Journal and Architectural Record. Huber is currently serving a three-year term on the AIA Strategic Council. Huber earned a Bachelor of Design and Master of Architecture from the University of Florida and a Master of Landscape Architecture + Urban Design from Florida International University.

Sara Jimenez, Intl. Assoc. AIA

Born and raised in Mexico, Sara Jimenez, Intl. Assoc. AIA, attended Universidad Autónoma Metropolitana where she obtained a bachelor’s degree in architecture. Shortly after starting her career, she was assigned to job sites overseeing construction of residential projects. In 1999 Jimenez moved to Miami, where she attended Florida International University while working as project architect for an interior design firm. Although a master’s degree in architecture was a natural path forward, she took a turn and obtained a master’s degree in construction management to extend her knowledge of the construction industry.

From the beginning of her career as an architect, Jimenez has had an invested interest in construction and interdisciplinary collaboration; as such, she works hand in hand with architects, engineers and construction professionals, emphasizing the discipline interrelations during the design and construction phases.

With over 20 years of experience, Jimenez has worked in all project phases, from design to construction administration and overall project management. She has vast project management experience working with educational, healthcare, hospitality, commercial and mixed-use projects and looks for every opportunity to mentor young professionals and help them develop their careers.­

Jimenez is an active member of Women in Architecture, Miami Chapter. She takes on every challenge at work and in life as an avid triathlete, runner, and two-time Ironman finisher she follows through the words of Ayn Rand “The question isn’t who’s going to let me; it’s who’s going to stop me”


Connor Leahy
Regional Business Development Manager

Connor Leahy is an experienced sales director with a demonstrated history of working in the glass, ceramics, and concrete industry. He is a strong sales professional in negotiation, sales management, team building, manufacturing, and international sales.




Cydney McGlothlin, AIA,
University Architect
University of Florida
Photo Courtesy of the University of Florida

Cydney McGlothlin, AIA, received her Bachelor of Architecture from Kansas State University and is a licensed architect in both Colorado and Florida.­ Prior to coming to the University of Florida, she worked in Denver and Boston on a variety of projects.­In 2003 McGlothlin joined the University of Florida and became a project manager. She began by managing minor projects and after a few years started managing major projects. Many of her projects are focused on student life and the arts. Among her projects are the Steinbrenner Band Building, Harn Museum Asian Art Wing, Fackler Foyers at the Phillips Center for Performing Arts, the Reitz Union Expansion and Renovation and the Herbert Wertheim Laboratory for Engineering Excellence.­In 2019 Cydney was appointed university architect and guides the architectural aesthetic on UF’s main campus. She sees projects through the approval process and works with the Planning, Design & Construction team to ensure compliance with campus design guidelines and other standards. Additionally, she ensures projects comply with ongoing planning initiatives, such as the Campus Master Plan; Strategic Development Plan; Landscape Master Plan; Transportation and Parking Strategic Plan; Housing Master Plan; Utility Infrastructure Master Plan; Campus Framework Plan and the Wayfinding Plan.­ In 2023, she provides leadership on over $2 billion in active projects at the University of Florida, presents regularly to UF leadership, serves on many UF committees and sits on the AIA Gainesville Board.­


Stephanie McPherson, AIA

Stephanie McPherson, AIA, is the immediate past president of AIA Florida Southwest.­ Stephanie is a licensed architect and contractor with Studio+. She has a passion for construction administration. McPherson maintains Studio+ construction administration standard operating procedures. Paying attention to quality control and all aspects of the construction administration phase. McPherson knew early on that she wanted to be an architect. McPherson attended the Ohio State University and The University of Miami.­


Brian McSweeney, PE, SE (IL), FBRSE
Senior Project Manager / Florida Office Director
Ehlert-Bryan, Inc.

Brian McSweeney, PE, SE, FBRSE, senior project manager & Florida office director with Ehlert-Bryan, Inc. with areas of expertise in structural engineering design, consulting and inspections for the restoration and repair of existing buildings and the design and construction of new buildings. He has worked with a variety of building materials, including steel, concrete, wood, and masonry. With more than 15 years of experience, McSweeney excels at developing solutions to complex structural challenges, including structures built atop existing piers, existing concrete canopies and adaptive reuses that exceed the original structural designs.

Chris Morgan
Architectural Sales Representative­
PGT Innovation

Chris Morgan is Architectural Sales Representative for PGT Innovations. Prior to joining PGT Innovations, Morgan worked in the custom millwork and cabinetry industry for more than 15 years. With regard to the window and door industry, Morgan has experience working with both manufactures as well and independent dealers of vinyl, aluminum, and clad wood windows and doors. In addition, Morgan has experience working with impact rated, frameless, structural glass and railings. His focus has been primarily on builders and architects working in the custom and luxury residential market. Morgan is a graduate of the University of South Florida with a Bachelor of Science, Business Administration/Marketing and is a veteran of the United States Marine Corps.


Allison Muth
Regional Manager Construction

Allison Muth is the regional manager construction for Medxcel and is responsible for planning, design and construction (PDC) that support the Ascension Texas Ministry­Market. Prior to joining Medxcel PDC in Austin, Texas, Muth spent 18 years at Texas Children’s Hospital where she focused on developing the project management program,­interior standards, logistics, and master planning efforts to support the growth of Texas Children’s Hospital in the Houston and Austin market. Muth is a licensed architect and registered Interior Designer in Texas and a graduate of Virginia Tech where she obtained her bachelor’s degree from the College of Architecture. Prior to joining healthcare, she spent several years in traditional. architectural practice and was involved in all phases of projects at architectural firms in both Washington, D.C. and Houston, TX. Muth is a member of the Construction Owner’s Association of America (COAA) and served as the President from April 2019 thru December 2022. She is also a member of the American Institute of Architects and Women in Healthcare, Texas Chapter.


Gwendoline Albright Ndikumagenge, Assoc. AIA, LEED GA
Designer 1

Gwendoline Albright Ndikumagenge, Assoc. AIA, is a graduate of Andrews University where she earned a Masters of Architecture, B.Arch with honors, and a certificate in leadership. She is actively pursuing architecture licensure and aspires to gain architectural experience and exercise good stewardship of my degrees, gifts, skills, and talents in creating functional places that impact and inspire people to live better, healthier, and happier. Originally from Burundi, Ndikumagenge studied all her high school in Rwanda, and consider herself a global citizen.


Joyce Owens, FAIA, RIBA
Principal Architect
Architecture Joyce Owens, LLC

Joyce Owens, FAIA, is the principal architect at Architecture Joyce Owens LLC. She is the recipient of the 2022 Gold Medal of honor awarded by the Florida Chapter of the American Institute of Architects (AIA) for recognizing her leadership and significant contributions to the architecture profession, her communities and architecture at large.­ Her client lists extend through the United States, the United Kingdom and Italy.


Dr. Tyler "Ty" Patak, AIA, NCARB, CPD, LEEP AP
Parker/Mudgett/Smith Architects

Dr. Tyler "Ty" Patak, AIA, architect, partner, and vice president at Parker, Mudgett, Smith Architects, LLC. Dr. Patak holds the certified professional designation in crime prevention through environmental design. He has testified, written, and presented on the subject. Dr. Patak has served on the Florida Design Out Crime Association Board of Directors continuously since 2009. Dr. Patak earned LEED AP credential in 2009 with accompanying BD+C specialty. He has been a LEED administrator on several large educational projects.


Jeff Peters, PE, CGC,
Woodworks – Wood Products Council

Jeff Peters received his bachelor’s degree in Civil/Structural Engineering from the University of Florida in 2007 after serving five years in the United States Air Force as an F-16 crew chief. He holds a Certified General Contractor’s license and was previously a small business owner. Peters has a diverse background that includes structural design, field engineering, threshold inspections and quality control of structures ranging from mid-rise buildings to sporting venues—developed during his time working in the commercial side of the building industry.


Francis "Frank" Pitts, FAIA,
Principal, Architecture+

Francis Murdock Pitts, FAIA, is widely recognized as one of the world’s leading planners and designers of psychiatric facilities and as a leader in the development of an evidence-based design practice culture in North America. Pitts­has consulted on more than 150 projects involving well over 20,000 mental health beds in clinical settings located in in all parts of the United States and Canada.­He has served as national vice president of the American Institute of Architects and as president of both the AIA’s Academy of Architecture for Health and the American College of Healthcare Architects.­ In his leadership positions in these institutions, he has advocated the development of practice cultures that evince evidence-based design.­He speaks widely and publishes articles on the lessons that can be learned from exemplary hospitals and the application of research evidence to hospital design.­ In recognition of his contributions to healthcare design and in particular for his work for the mentally ill, Pitts was honored by the Center for Health Design with their 2018 Changemaker Award.


Jason Quimby

Jason Quimby is the Executive Vice President and Chief Revenue officer of SLIMPACT which is a structurally glazed frameless hurricane approved glazing system that help create extra-large beautiful views from the outside looking in and the inside looking out.­ Jason has been working with the Florida architectural community for close to 30 years with the first 20 spent as President / CEO of Miami based Iberia Tiles Corporation which he sold in 2012.­ In 2012 Jason also authored his first book titled “Leading by Listening and Obeying” which is a practical approach to team building with an emphasis on experiences from luxury retail and construction distribution entities. For the last 10 years, Jason has been helping build the SLIMPACT team by increasing the amount of talented A&D Consultants that are regionally based and help the local design community take their dream designs from concept to reality.­ During this time the Faour Glass family has partnered/acquired a number of Florida based commercial glazing companies that help SLIMPACT execute total envelope solutions in the local fields by providing GC’s and homeowners alike with a comprehensive approach to all fenestration needs. ­­SLIMPACT is based in Tampa but has offices in Naples, Miami, Pompano Beach, and soon expanding to Orlando. A core part of Jason’s philosophy and 360 Degree SLIMPACT Customer Experience is rooted in “listening” to customer needs and finding solutions that are both practical and efficient.


Glenn Remler, CSI, ACT
Architectural, Account Executive
Sherwin Williams

Glenn Remler, CSI, ACT is an architectural account executive, responsible for working with architects, interior designers, specification writers and structural engineers for Sherwin Williams Company covering South Florida & Southwest Florida.


David Rifkind
Director and Ivan H Smith Endowed Professor
University of Florida, College of Design, Construction and Planning

David Rifkind joined the UF faculty in 2021 as director of the School of Architecture after 14 years at Florida International University. Trained as an architect and architect historian, Rifkind studies urbanism and architecture in Ethiopia form the late 19th century to the present. His current book project, Modern Ethiopia: Architecture, Urbanism and the Building of a Nation, incorporates field research in Ethiopia, Eritrea and Djibouti with archival research in Ethiopia, Europe and the United States. Rifkind’s work in Ethiopia has been supported by a grant from the Graham Foundation and residency at the American Academy in Rome as the inaugural Wolfsonian-FIU Affiliated Fellow. A practicing designer, Rifkind has worked to make environmental stewardship and community development the central focus of architectural practice in South Florida. In 201 he completed a house in South Miami which served as a model of sustainable construction and environmental stewardship. Rifkind is currently working on two net-zero energy projects.


Henry Rueda, Assoc. AIA
Chair and Associate Professor
Florida International Unversity, Department of Architecture

Henry Rueda, Assoc. AIA, started teaching at FIU in 2014. Before that he taught at Escuela de Arquitectura y Diseno at Unversidad Jose Maria Vargas; Escuela de Arquitectura y Urbanisimo at Universidad Central de Venezuela and also at Universidad Simon Bolivar, Venezuela. Rueda’s professional experience includes working for Jesus Tenreiro in Caracas, Venezuela and Wiel Arets in Maastricht, Holland.­ His curent work focuses on single family residences in different cities in Venezueal and Miami.­ In 2014 his VL House was nominated for the Emerging Architects Mies Crown­ Hall Prize of the Americas, organized bby the Illinois Institute of Technology.


Michelle A. Russo, LEED, AP
Vice President of Research & Practice
American Institute of Architects

Michele Russo is the vice president of research & practice at the American Institute of Architects where she is responsible for advancing architectural practice—including the research and data necessary to help businesses thrive and professionals advance in their careers. In this role, she oversees the delivery of programs, products, tools, and resources to support these goals of member and firm prosperity. She is a frequent presenter providing insights on economic, firm, and disruptive trends affecting the ability for architectural firms and professionals to navigate current and future conditions. Russo previously worked for Dodge Data & Analytics where she ran its SmartMarket market research program providing data and intelligence on AEC industry trends, most notably sustainable design and construction, technology, and workforce. Russo will discuss the economic outlook and what we should be watching to track the economy.­ She will also cover what trends and pressures are facing the profession—and industry—over the next 18 months, including emerging developments that will shape the future.


Carl Sergio, AIA
Senior Project Architect
Interior Architects

Carl Sergio, AIA is a senior project architect at Interior Architects in Chicago and has more than 12 years of experience across firms from the smallest to the largest, across all phases of design and construction, through many market sectors and project typologies. He believes in using his time and talent to have an impact on the world, and the people in it, through the built environment. Sergio is confident that mentorship is the way we can all have an impact on future generations of architects and the world at large. He has volunteered with Erie Neighborhood House, the Chicago Architecture Center, the ACE Mentorship Program, and NOMA’s Project Pipeline. Sergio has been co-director of AIA Chicago’s BRIDGE Program the past seven years, he co-founded AIA Illinois’ Emerging Professionals Network in 2017 and was the 2020 chair, and he served as AIA National's young architect regional director for Illinois in 2019 and 2020. In 2020 he founded the “Wing” student mentorship program at all three Chicago architecture schools (UIC, IIT, and SAIC) and is also beginning year three of "NEXUS", a new virtual national mentorship program aimed at serving young professionals across the US and abroad. Additionally, he is working on consulting on the startup of new mentorship programs across many AIA chapters locally and internationally.


Natividad “Nati” Soto, FAIA, LEED, APBD+C
Ferguson Glasgow Schuster Soto, Inc.

Soto is the President of Ferguson Glasgow Suster Soto Inc. Her love of architecture began when she was a young student at the University of Miami School of Architecture and continues to grow each year. Soto has over 30 years of architecture and interior design experience. She serves on the Miami Center for Architecture and Design board and is an active member of AIA Miami’s Women in Architecture Committee. Soto was recognized for her service to the profession and elected to the American Institute of Architects College of Fellows in 2015 and was AIA Florida’s president in 2019.ident of the Georgia Chapter of the Association for Learning Environments.

Jamese Spears, PE­
Principal | Lead Structural Engineer
TLC Engineering Solutions

Jamese Spears joined TLC with more than a decade of experience. While managing TLC’s structural group in Tampa, she works closely with structural engineers across TLC to deliver exceptional designs on schedule. Jamese received her B.S, Structural Engineering and M.S. Civil Engineering at the University of Lousiville.


Belinda Stewart, FAIA
Brenda Stewart Architects

Belinda Stewart, FAIA, has over 30 years’ experience dedicated to great design, historic preservation, and sustainability. Her belief that a small town inspires, that family roots can build an ethic that weaves through a profession and that architecture shows the beauty of history and hope in our future. Belinda Stewart Architects has provided architectural services for over 500 historic structures, which in turn, received more than 100 design and preservation awards.


Todd Sweet, AIA
Sweet Sparkman Architecture and Interiors

Todd Sweet, AIA, LEED AP is the founder of Sweet Sparkman, Sweet was born and raised in the Northeast, where he received his Bachelor of Architecture degree form Roger Williams University. He spent his internship at Arquitectonica in Miami, Florida where he worked on projects throughout Europe, South America, and the United States.­ In 2002 Sweet started the firm TOTeMS Archtiecture, the original firm’s name. In 2004, he partnered with Jerry Sparkman to form Sweet Sparkman Architects. The firm has built a national reputation for design excellence and has been asked to participate in LaVenice Biennale, a bi-annual architecture exhibit in simple building volumes and the exploitation of materials in an unconventional fashion. Municipal planning and architecture are Sweet’s award-winning specialty.


Rebecca Talbert, AIA, LEED BD+C, GGP, GPCP,
Project Manager
RLF Architecture Engineering Interiors

Rebecca Talbert, AIA, LEED BD+C, GGP is a senior architect and federal market project manager at RLF Architects in Orlando. She has over 15 years’ experience in the design and management of large, complex projects including healthcare, hospitality, and community buildings. Talbert has received local, state, and national recognition for her design work and service to the profession including the 2015 AIA Young Architect Award. She recently served as 2021 president of AIA Orlando, and currently serves on the board of directors for Hannibal Square Community Land Trust, a non-profit affordable housing developer. She has taught a wide range of architectural courses at Valencia College, the University of Central Florida, and UF Citylab. Talbert received a Bachelor of Design and a Master of Architecture from the University of Florida.


Arthur Thompson, AIA

Arthur Thompson, AIA, principal at SMRT, Inc. specializes in the programming, planning and design of justice, government, and healthcare projects.­ As an undergraduate psychology major at Harvard, Thompson assisted with a therapy group in the Concord facility of the Massachusetts prison system. There, he became interested in the impact of the traditional correctional environment on inmate and officer behavior. Thompson’s education continued with an architectural degree from Columbia. His career has focused on building designs that positively impact behavior and that incorporate contemporary principles of justice design. He applies those principals to his work across the broad spectrum of project types and sizes and frequently shares his expertise as an instructor at the National Institute of Corrections.


Allen Watters
Director of Architecture­
University of Central Florida

Allen Watters is the director of architecture at the University of Central Florida. Professor Watters has taught Architecture courses at Valencia College since the inception of the AA Articulated pre-major. Throughout his time at Valencia, he's taught all sequences of Architectural Design, History, and Theory courses. In addition to his teaching responsibilities at Valencia College, Professor Watters serves as the Architecture Program Chair in the Division of Humanities at the school. He is a member of the College-wide Curriculum Committee and has served as a West Campus faculty senator. Professor Watters continues to be active on committees regarding the 2+2+2 Academic Partnership between the Architecture programs of Valencia College, the University of Central Florida, and the University of Florida. Outside of Valencia College, Professor Watters has served as an adjunct faculty member at the University of Central Florida, the University of South Florida, and has been published in the Journal of Architectural Education. Professor Watters concurrently serves as the Director of the University of Central Florida Architecture Undergraduate Program.

Seth Yeslow, AIA, NCARB­
Steven L. Cohen & Associates

Seth D. Yeslow, AIA, NCARB is a licensed architect with 20 years of experience in the architecture profession and has experience in a wide range of projects ranging from residential, hospitality, commercial and mixed-use construction to government facilities. Yeslow possesses proficiency in designing and managing projects with multiple programs throughout all phases of the design & construction process. His work includes some of the most recognizable buildings throughout South Florida, from high-rise hotels and residential towers to urban retail & entertainment centers.

Don Yoshino, FAIA
Yoshino Architecture, PA

Don Yoshino, FAIA is principal of Yoshino Architecture, PA, located in Boca Raton, Florida. Since his graduation from CalPoly in 1965, he has embarked on a career with an international focus. Beginning with a graduate program at Kyoto University in Japan, where he studied Japanese architectural history, Yoshino later remained in Japan as project manager and then as vice president-in-charge of the international division at several large international firms where he worked on projects for the U.S. government and the private sector in Asia. He then returned to the US to apprentice under world renowned Italian architect and visionary, Paolo Soleri in Scottsdale, Arizona at Arcosanti. Yoshino’s portfolio comprises all facets of architecture from industrial to residential, with some of his most notable projects including an award-winning 23-story luxury condo in Fort Lauderdale, several high-end, single-family homes in South Florida, as well as hotel design in Spain and India.

Yoshino began his engagement in the American Institute of Architects in 1971 as a member, and served in numerous leadership positions at the local, state, and national levels and was elevated to the College of Fellows in 2007. Yoshino received his Fellowship (the highest level of recognition by the Association) in the category of Service to Society, for his leadership within the association and for his service to his community, most notably, as trustee and former BOT President of The Morikami Museum and Japanese Gardens, where he continued his efforts to bridge the gap of understanding between Japan and America; and assisted in the seven-year development of the award winning Harriet & George Cornell “Rojien Gardens”.­ Recently Yoshino traveled to Tokyo, Japan with students from FIU study aboard program and assisted in the 4th year design project for the Morikami Museum. In 2017, Yoshino was conferred the Order of the Rising Sun, Gold and Silver Rays medal from the Foreign Ministry of Japan for his continuous work in bridging the culture between Japan and the United States.


David Zach

David Zach is a Futurist.­ No, really.­ He has a degree in Futures Research from the University of Houston. Then again, he got that degree way back in 1981, so it's pretty much history at this point.­ Since then, he's given over 1,500 fascinating and funny talks to audiences throughout North America and Europe on the interconnections between such topics as curiosity, art and design, technology, keyboards, vs. pencils, demographics and history.­ And pirates.­ He likes to talk about pirates and their role in innovation.­ Between 2010-2013, David was a Public Director on the AIA National Board and has spoken at over 50 AIA events throughout North American.­ For more:








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