2021 Academy for Emerging Professionals Award Recipients Announced

American Institute of Architects California, Recognizes Dedicated Professionals

Sacramento, Calif.—It’s time to recognize some architects who, already in their career, are establishing themselves as those who will produce and insight significant contributions to the profession. The Academy for Emerging Professionals Awards Program jury met this month to deliberate over a strong package of submissions for the various awards within the program.

Brett Dougherty, AIA, Carina Mills, AIA, and Ian Merker, AIA  met in February to discuss the submissions entered and the overall state of equity in design and the energy and passion those who are new in the profession are adding to the overall value of design.

The Associates Award, given to an Associate AIA member who best exemplifies the highest qualities of leadership and has demonstrated unparalleled commitment to the profession went to Joshua Foster, Assoc. AIA. A member of the AIA LA, Foster is heavily involved in engagement and outreach within the community and the profession. His beliefs in threading community involvement through multiple organizations are matched with his actions with AIA LA and National Organization of Minority Architects (NOMA). “His contributions are more than relevant with what the profession needs right now,” one juror commented.

AIA LA received the Chapter Award. The jury was particularly impressed with how this chapter devotes time, resources, and energy to the many young architect programs. This chapter’s continuing commitment to the Emerging Professional is valued and appreciated, and serves as an example for other chapters who want to invest in this promising group.

Finally, the recipient of the Young Architect award goes to Drew Weigl, AIA, of AIA Redwood Empire. Weigl has consistently proven himself unafraid to address large groups with his opinions and concerns, and has proven to be a strong leader.

Weigl is known for spearheading his chapter’s AIARE Perspective Series, and also serves as the NCARB AXP Supervisor at his firm. The jury unanimously recognized Weigl’s contributions and service to the AEP population were beyond measure. Weigl currently sits on the City of Santa Rosa Design Review Board assisting in shaping public decisions on projects.


The AIA California represents the interests of more than 11,000 architects and allied professionals in California. Founded in 1944, The AIACA’s mission supports architects in their endeavors to improve the quality of life for all Californians by creating more livable communities, sustainable designs and quality work environments. Today, The AIACA is the largest component of the national AIA organization. For more information, visit www.aiacalifornia.org

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