Contact: Shannon Calder                                                FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE

Director of Communications

(916) 642-1718



The American Institute of Architects, California Council, Announces 2 Recipients

SACRAMENTO, Calif.—Feb. 23, 2018—The practice of architecture can sometimes be about creating a legacy—either in portfolio or firm culture or contribution to society within other categories. The AIACC Council Awards Program celebrates these attributes with the Council Awards Program. This year’s recipients were announced at the February 23 Board of Directors meeting in Pasadena and are now part of the esteemed list of award-winning architects.


Distinguished Practice Award:

This year’s Distinguished Practice Award was received by Lorcan O’Herlihy, FAIA. O’Herlihy, who founded LOHA in 1994, has maintained a passion for the constantly changing urban landscape, and the complexities which go in to designing in such an area.

Urban and social concerns have driven the firm, along with an intense interest in artistry. According to the LOHA website, O’Herlihy spent “his formative years working in New York and Paris on the Grand Louvre Museum as a designer at I.M. Pei Partners.

In addition to running his practice, O’Herlihy also contributes as an Adjunct Professor at the University of Southern California.

This year’s jury voted unanimously to move his submittal forward as the recipient. They all commented excitedly on how his work “promotes much-needed conversation about the relationship of design to landscape. One juror commented, “He has been able to consistently craft a high level of design while maintaining a solid commitment to education, urbanism, community and environment, and I always learn from his work.”


Firm Award:

The 2018 Firm Award was received by Johnson Fain of Los Angeles. The firm, established 28 years ago, specializes in corporate, educational, residential, technical, mixed use retail, and more within the building design. But they also have a strong portfolio of Urban Design and Planning as well as Interior Design.

At their presentation to the AIACC Board of Directors, one speaker from the firm commented that “they are interested in connecting people to their spaces—whether it’s work or residential.”

The jury was impressed with not only their body of work, but the commitment to community as well as to the work environment. From yoga classes to a newly implemented once-a-month watercolor class, the principles seem to be considering the importance of life within the daily work experience.

Where one works, and how one works—leads to the invention of ideas—and sometimes the best ideas spring from informality. This seems to be a guiding principal that has led to much success and a long list of accolades and awards for the firm.

One juror said, “How they blur lines between personal and business is inspirational. They seem to be cornering a niche on the work/life balance for their employees and it shows in their innovative work.”

The jury was also impressed with their active engagement in the architecture community and how that translates to community engagement, using the firm’s work with the Veterans Advocacy Group as an example. “This shows a connection to the people they are designing for and not simply the aesthetics of a building,” said a juror.

For more information, contact Shannon Calder 916.642.1718.



The AIACC represents the interests of more than 11,000 architects and allied professionals in California.  Founded in 1944, The AIACC’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 AIACC is the largest component of the national AIA organization. For more information, visit

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