Fellow Friday|

2021 Fellow: Evelyn Lee, FAIA

Evelyn Lee, FAIA, is the first ever Senior Experience Designer at Slack

Technologies, founder of the Practice of Architecture, and co-host on the Podcast, Practice Disrupted. Lee seamlessly integrates her business and architecture background with a qualitative and quantitative focus to build a better experience for the organization’s employees, clients, and guests.

She is widely published, wrote a monthly column for Contract magazine for over 3 years, and now is a frequent contributor to Architect Magazine. Evelyn has received numerous industry awards including the 2016 40 Under 40 award for Building Design + Construction and the 2014 AIA National Young Architects Award. She currently serves as the first ever female Treasurer to the AIA National Board in 2020-2021.

Evelyn has been a featured Keynote Speaker, Invited Guest, Panelist, and Moderator at national design and architecture conferences including AIA National Convention, Dwell on Design, and Women in Green. Her topics focus on developing knowledge leadership, organizational change management, capacity building, stakeholder engagement, and strategic approaches to put design thinking into practice.

Evelyn has over 15 years working with individuals, organizations, and companies who are interested in applying design thinking to their decision-making process.

  1.  Why did you apply for fellowship?
    I had the honor of serving in several elected leadership positions on the Young Architects Forum, which is a program at AIA National that was originally formed by the College of Fellows. Similar to the support that I had from my mentors within the AIA to get my license, there is a lot of support from Fellows Executive Committee members to encourage YAF leaders to apply for Fellowship.For me pursuing Fellowship was really more about creating a path for others within the profession. As someone who is in a career that is architecturally adjacent, a female minority, and a parent of young children – I hope others see my pursuit of Fellowship and know that there is a broader place for individuals within the profession.
  2. Where were you when you got the news you received it?
    With COVID, I was sitting in my home office with my husband when I received the news.
  3. How did you celebrate?
    My husband and I celebrated by going out for a nice dinner. Not being a part of a firm, receiving fellowship was a bit anti-climactic at work. I’m not sure that many people actually know about it.
  4. What’s your one piece of advice for those applying, or thinking of applying?
    Outside of the body of work that you need to pursue fellowship, the only limitation is that you are a licensed member within good standing for at least 10 years. There’s no age limit on how OLD you have to be, to be deserving of Fellowship and I am definitely not the youngest.
  5. What’s next for you?
    To keep doing the work that led me to the Fellowship in the first place. Grow the Practice Innovation Lab, keep researching how to evolve the profession on the PracticecofArchitecture.com, and continuing the conversation on the podcast PracticeDisrupted.com


AIA California
AIA California
Celebrating over 75 years of service, the AIA California actively promotes the value of design and advocates for the architectural profession. AIA CA is an association of 11,000 dedicated and passionate members who share a commitment to design excellence and livability in California’s natural and built environments.

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