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Rural Studio Wins Whitney M. Young Award

Newbern Town Hall and Fire Station

The Board of Directors of the American Institute of Architects (AIA) named Rural Studio the recipient of the 2015 Whitney M. Young Jr. Award. Established in 1972, the award honors architects and organizations for their contribution to social justice in the field of architecture, including affordable housing, inclusiveness, and universal access.

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The award is named after American civil rights leader Whitney Moore Young, Jr. (1921-1971) who famously challenged the AIA’s absence of socially progressive advocacy at the 1968 AIA National Convention. Young, civil rights-era Executive Director of the National Urban League and former President of the National Association of Social Workers, worked to break down barriers of segregation and inequality. In 1969, President Johnson honored Young with the highest civilian award, the Presidential Medal of Freedom.

Previous award recipients include Habitat for Humanity in 1988, National Organization of Minority Architects (NOMA) in 2007, and, most recently, Ivenue Love-Stantley, FAIA in 2014.

This year’s AIA Collaborative and Professional Achievement Awards Jury included Donald King, FAIA (Chair), DKA Architecture in Seattle, WA; Hiroshi Jacobs, Assoc. AIA, Studios Architecture in Washington, DC; Michael Pyatok, FAIA, Pyatok Architects in Oakland, CA; David Trevino, AIA, City of Dallas; and Karen E. Williams, AIA, PIVOT Architecture, in Eugene, Oregon.

Rural Studio will be presented the award in May at the AIA National Convention in Atlanta.