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Active Outside the Practice

Architects in their Community: Los Angeles, Michael B. Lehrer, FAIA


SESSION ID: TH 201 5/17/2012 2:00-3:30pm

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Learning Objectives
1. Recognize and identify a range of urban challenges 2. Identify needs and challenges in your own community 3. Identify & employ strategies to engage community 4. How to Work with City leaders and staff committees

ENGAGEMENT PARTI!

ARCHITECTURE IS THE SHAPING OF SPACE WITH OBJECTS IN LIGHT TO CREATE PRACTICAL AND EMOTIVE PLACES

LA
ENGAGEMENT PARTI!

Los Angeles is a world-class city with a peculiar mix of BOOSTERISM EBULLIENCE HIGH/LOW CULTURE NONCHALANCE INSECURITY AND UNSELFCONSCIOUS ABOUT ITS GREATNESS Architects are increasingly near the nexus of these issues, instrumental in righting LAs trajectory into the future.
Of course, always a long way to go.

LA
ENGAGEMENT PARTI!

CASE STUDIES
Design/culture-changing programs that I have created and/or participated/led in:

AIA/LA LEGISLATIVE DAY LA (Grassroots LA) THE CITIZENS BLUE RIBBON SCHOOL BOND OVERSIGHT COMMITTEE
and my practice and studio,

LEHRERARCHITECTS LA
will be explored as possible, paradigmatic engagement partis.

LA
ENGAGEMENT PARTI!
.

My Home Sticking around a community, living/working in same hood that I grew up in. My Hood Son of the Hollywood Hills. Born in early December, my sign is HOLLYWOOD

LA
RULES OF ENGAGEMENT

LA
ENGAGEMENT CALENDAR: YOUTH
INSIGHT: COMMUNITY MATTERS ENGAGEMENT IS POWERFUL, FUN, GRATIFYING
Born between Wright, Neutra, and Shindler Decided to be architect in 3rd grade Live/work in neighborhood I grew up in. President of Junior High School, down the street, in 1968; worked for Bobby Kennedy at that time. 14 years old, 10 from him when he was assassinated. Vice-President of my high school, up the street, in 1970 created a first, neighborhood recycling center at my school

LA
ENGAGEMENT CALENDAR: FIRST 20 YEARS OF PRIVATE PRACTICE LEHRERARCHITECTS LA, FOUNDED 1985
INSIGHT: FELT NO NEED FOR PUBLIC PRESENCE. BUILDING PRACTICE, BUILDING FAMILY Worked out of my house, 2,000 SF loft on 3rd floor Raised 3 kids with design studio over their heads, After 1 year: adjunct faculty at USC (until today) After 11 years, got involved in AIA (until today) After 13, years: President of AIA/LA (1-3 year stint) After 14 years: Vice Chair, Citizens Oversight Committee (5.5 years) After 18 years became a Fellow Built a few hundred projects 29 major design awards

LA
ENGAGEMENT CALENDAR: FIRST 20 YEARS OF PRIVATE PRACTICE AIA BOARD
INSIGHT: DESIGNER AS CITIZEN / CITIZEN FORTIFIES DESIGNER PRIVILEGE TO SERVE SOCIETY BY SERVING PROFESSION. 1996. Asked to join Board of AIA/LA 1998. Became Vice-President/President-elect of AIA/LA VISIT TO GRASSROOTS IN WASHINGTON WAS PROFOUND 1999. AIA/LA PRESIDENCY Platform: Cachet, Insinuation into the life of the city, Assume central role in society

LA
ENGAGEMENT CALENDAR: FIRST 20 YEARS OF PRIVATE PRACTICE AIA/LA VICE-PRESIDENT/PRESIDENT -ELECT
INSIGHT: AIA DOES GREAT THINGS IN D.C. AND SACRAMENTO, BUT, ALL POLITICS ARE LOCAL.

Members know nothing of Washington and Sacramento, because it was NOT LOCAL, because the engagement was neither visceral, visual, nor emotionalit led to the inevitable query What has the AIA done for me lately? My answer was to create Grassroots LA.

LA
ENGAGEMENT CALENDAR: FIRST 20 YEARS OF PRIVATE PRACTICE AIA/LA VICE-PRESIDENT/PRESIDENT -ELECT

LA
ENGAGEMENT CALENDAR: FIRST 20 YEARS OF PRIVATE PRACTICE AIA/LA PRESIDENCY

LEGISLATIVE DAY LA (GRASSROOTS LA) TRANSFORM THE CULTURE OF THE PROFESSION


1999-today,13 years old. Meet with every City Council member, Supervisor, agency heads, etc. annually. Talking points/Annual agenda is developed over the year by AIA committees and Political Outreach Committee. Political Outreach Director (paid AIA/LA staff) in place for the past 7 years.

LA
ENGAGEMENT CALENDAR: FIRST 20 YEARS OF PRIVATE PRACTICE AIA/LA PRESIDENCY

LEGISLATIVE DAY LA (GRASSROOTS LA) TRANSFORM THE CULTURE OF THE PROFESSION


. INSIGHT: THE FORM AND SUBSTANCE OF ENGAGEMENT SUBSTANCE. Any given year, a specific agenda FORM. Architects--optimistic outcome-driven,, framers of problems--as conveners, as t turn-to profession for citys leaders in matters of urban import. OUTCOME Architects and design have become part of our City leaderships mental landscape, a major transformation.

LA
ENGAGEMENT CALENDAR: FIRST 20 YEARS OF PRIVATE PRACTICE AIA/LA PRESIDENCY

School Bond Oversight Committee


an extraordinary civic endeavor, the making of up to 150 new schools and the modernization of over 700 schools
First Bond failed in 1997, In 1998 a new Bond included an 11-member Oversight Committee, including the AIA, Structural engineers, Unions, Contractors, PTA, etc.

Only AIA understood the full range construction program from conception to realization. No one else even came close. Critical players.
Authored sustainablility resolution in 2000, regularly interviewed in the press I came on as President-elect of AIALA, stayed on and was Vice Chairman for 5 years.

$2.2 Billion bond ultimately became $27 Billion program

LA
ENGAGEMENT CALENDAR: FIRST 20 YEARS OF PRIVATE PRACTICE AIA/LA PRESIDENCY

School Bond Oversight Committee


the Los Angeles experience as the ultimate case study of civic transformation: lessons in what to do, what to avoid, and what not to do; lessons in leadership and its absence; understanding the relationship of civic romance to reality to romance to reality, etc. lessons in the necessary tensions between the public and private interests at play in the making of good and fine public places balancing the need to get it done to the need for planning and appropriate deliberation, that is, the need for DESIGN the value of VALUE how to make a LEARNING COMMUNITY the absolute necessity of TRANSPARENCY over OPACITY the importance of INSTITUTIONAL MEMORY and most importantly, lessons in how, with some luck thrown in, to CHANGE CULTURES, VALUES, and ultimately, to achieve positive, and occasionally excellent, outcomes

LA
School Bond Oversight Committee
INSIGHT:
FELT EXTREME RESPONSIBILITY TO BE VERY PRESENT AND AGGRESSIVE IN REPRESENTING THE PUBLIC INTEREST THROUGH THE LENSES OF DESIGN.
ARCHITECTS ARE ABSOLUTELY ESSENTIAL AND CENTRAL TO PROTECTING VALUE FOR THE PUBLIC. NO ONE ELSE HAS THE EXPERTISE..

ENGAGEMENT CALENDAR: FIRST 20 YEARS OF PRIVATE PRACTICE AIA/LA PRESIDENCY

LA
ENGAGEMENT CALENDAR: 2005-NOW

INSIGHT: NEED PUBLIC PRESENCE TO EMBODY OUR CORE ARCHITECTURAL/HUMAN VALUES, TO SYNTHESIZE ARCHITECTURE AND ENGAGMENT NEED A PLACE AND PRACTICE OF DESIRE LIVE VITRUVIAN PRACTICE: DELIGHT IS A MATTER OF EXTREME GRAVITAS IN OUR WORK PRODUCT AND PROCESS

LA
ENGAGEMENT CALENDAR: 2005-NOW

LEHRERARCHITECTS LA STUDIO

STUDIO THAT EMBODIES CORE VALUES. HYPER-FUNCTIONAL. NURTURE CREATIVE PRACTICE. CELEBRATE THE COMMUNITY OF WORKERS AND THE BEAUTY OF MAKING

LA
ENGAGEMENT CALENDAR: 2005-NOW

LEHRERARCHITECTS LA
PRACTICE OF DESIRE: ARCHITECTURE AND COMMUNITIY MELD
HOSTING COMMUNITY AND EMPOWERING ARCHITECTURE PRIVATE ARCHITECT OFFICE AS QUASI PUBLIC COMMUNITY CENTER AMONG MOST IMPORTANT PROJECTS IN OUR PORTFOLIO. SPECTACULAR WORK ENVIRONMENT MOVIE/TV/COMMERICAL SHOOTS ART(IST)-IN-RESIDENCE PROGRAM CONCERTS CAMPAIGNS AIA EVENTS HOLLYWOOD DESIGN REVIEW CLIENT GALAS HARVARD SERVES ALUMNI EVENTS FOR ALL OF MY COLLEAGUES SCHOOLS

LA
ENGAGEMENT PARTI!

TODAY
President, LEHRERARCHITECTS LA INC. Partner, LAWRL Design LLP President, Homeless Health Care Los Angeles Chair-elect, Harvard Graduate School of Design Alumni Council Director, Harvard Alumni Association representing the GSD Harvard Design Magazine Professional Advisory Board University of California at Riverside Design Reivew Board Adjunct Faculty, University of Southern California Hollywood Planning and Design Review The Mayors Design Advisory Panel

LA
ENGAGEMENT PARTI!
COMMUNITY MATTERS: LEHRER ARCHITECTS LA STUDIO MY COMMUNITY. MIXING UP PUBLIC AND PRIVATE

LA
ENGAGEMENT PARTI!
COMMUNITY MATTERS: LEHRER ARCHITECTS LA STUDIO MY COMMUNITY. MIXING UP PUBLIC AND PRIVATE

LA
ENGAGEMENT PARTI!
COMMUNITY MATTERS: LEHRER ARCHITECTS LA STUDIO MY COMMUNITY. MIXING UP PUBLIC AND PRIVATE

COMMUNITY MATTERS: LEHRER ARCHITECTS LA STUDIO BEFORE

LA
ENGAGEMENT PARTI!
COMMUNITY MATTERS: LEHRER ARCHITECTS LA STUDIO MY COMMUNITY. MIXING UP PUBLIC AND PRIVATE

LA
ENGAGEMENT PARTI!
COMMUNITY MATTERS: LEHRER ARCHITECTS LA STUDIO MY COMMUNITY. MIXING UP PUBLIC AND PRIVATE

convener and host

LA
ENGAGEMENT PARTI!
COMMUNITY MATTERS: LEHRER ARCHITECTS LA STUDIO MY COMMUNITY. MIXING UP PUBLIC AND PRIVATE

art(ist)-in-residence

LA
ENGAGEMENT PARTI!
COMMUNITY MATTERS: LEHRER ARCHITECTS LA STUDIO MY COMMUNITY. MIXING UP PUBLIC AND PRIVATE

LA
ENGAGEMENT PARTI!
COMMUNITY MATTERS: LEHRER ARCHITECTS LA STUDIO MY COMMUNITY. MIXING UP PUBLIC AND PRIVATE

LA
ENGAGEMENT PARTI!
COMMUNITY MATTERS: LEHRER ARCHITECTS LA STUDIO MY COMMUNITY. MIXING UP PUBLIC AND PRIVATE

LA
ENGAGEMENT PARTI!
COMMUNITY MATTERS: LEHRER ARCHITECTS LA STUDIO MY COMMUNITY. MIXING UP PUBLIC AND PRIVATE

LA
ENGAGEMENT PARTI!
COMMUNITY MATTERS: LEHRER ARCHITECTS LA STUDIO MY COMMUNITY. MIXING UP PUBLIC AND PRIVATE

LA
ENGAGEMENT PARTI!
COMMUNITY MATTERS: LEHRER ARCHITECTS LA STUDIO MY COMMUNITY. MIXING UP PUBLIC AND PRIVATE

COMMUNITY MATTERS: LEHRER ARCHITECTS LA STUDIO MY COMMUNITY. MIXING UP PUBLIC AND PRIVATE

LA
ENGAGEMENT PARTI!

INSIGHT: ACT&LIVE LIKE DESIGN MATTERS. LIKE COMMUNITY MATTERS LIKE EXCELLENCE MATTERS. LIKE VALUE(S) MATTER.

LA
ENGAGEMENT PARTI!

MANDATE MAKE ENGAGEMENT SAFE/COOL/PRESTIGIOUS FOR YOUNG ARCHITECTS IN YOUR PRACTICES

LA
ENGAGEMENT PARTI!

MANDATE
UNDERSTAND THE PRIDE OF A YOUNG RECENT GRADUATE IN REPRESENING YOUR PRACTICE ON AN AIA COMMITTEE, USGBC, ULI, A SAVE -THE-MUSEUM COMMITTEE, ETC.

LA
ENGAGEMENT PARTI!

MANDATE DEVELOP THE ETHOS OF JOYFUL ENGAGEMENT,THE PAYOFF OF BUILDING COMMUNITIES OF ENGAGMENT.

LA
ENGAGEMENT PARTI!

MANDATE DO NOT BE LASSEZ FAIRE; ENGAGEMENT MUST BE EXPLICITLY ENCOURAGED,IF NOT MANDATED; MAJOR GIFT TO YOUTH.

ENGAGEMENT PARTI! FINIS.

Contact Information
MICHAEL B. LEHRER, FAIA
LEHRERARCHITECTS LA INC
2140 Hyperion Avenue Los Angeles, California 90027-4708 323.664.4747 X 101 www.lehrerarchitects.com

LAWRL Design LLP