Spring is just around the corner, and with it, MAF’s 17th Annual Golf Outing Scholarship Fundraiser. This year’s event, which is hosted by Ford Land, takes place on Monday, May 21, 2018 at the Dearborn Country Club.
In addition to scholarships, the event benefits other MAF programs, including MAF’s Public Awareness Grants and K5 education programs; the Tincknell Fund, to promote the value of architecture to Michigan residents and students; and the Dumke Fund, which makes architecture books available to children and architecture fans of all ages.
Click here for more information, including sponsorship opportunities, and to register.
Posted in News & Events, Uncategorized
Posted in News & Events, Uncategorized
One of the most engaging ways to learn about architecture is through programs that educate us, enrich our experiences, and stimulate our imaginations. That’s the premise behind the Michigan Architectural Foundation‘s (MAF) Public Awareness Grant program. Grants are awarded for quality projects, programs, and activities that align with MAF’s mission to advance awareness of architecture, and connect people with architecture in creative ways.
“The program has expanded greatly since its beginning, when grantees were AIA (American Institute of Architects) Michigan chapters looking to support a single event,” said Damian Farrell, FAIA, MAF Public Awareness Grant committee chair. “Then, several AIA chapters used the grants to publish guides to local architecture, which created extended public reach.  A seminal moment came with the Flint Flat Lot Design Competition to re-imagine a parking lot into a lively public space, which drew interest from around the world. With both programs, we saw the opportunity to make grants available to a wider audience, and broaden their focus.”
Many recent MAF Public Awareness grants have been for education-focused programs – which also is helping build positive connections with MAF’s own educational programs. This includes the National Association of Minority Architects’Project Pipeline Architecture Camp  (a three-time grant recipient), which exposes students to architecture-related careers; and the Midland Center for the Arts, which purchased large modular blocks and gears for its ‘Hall of Ideas’ that encourage children to experiment, imagine, and build.
Another, an arts program from Washtenaw County-based Community Action Network (CAN; also a multi-year grant recipient), presents students with hands-on design challenges, such as building wind energy structures and houses for stray cats, and is designed to help kids think critically and realize their potential to create. CAN’s program was introduced in a disadvantaged elementary school that had no arts or science programming, and has been so successful that funds have been leveraged to help incorporate it year-round into the school’s curriculum, and help pay for a dedicated instructor. Said Farrell, “CAN’s program is an excellent example of the lasting impact MAF’s grants were intended to create.”
MAF’s Public Awareness grant program continues to grow, and MAF encourages interested parties to submit grant applications for consideration on a rolling basis. Said Farrell, “We are looking for opportunities that connect people with architecture, whether they are education-based or reach large audiences through curated architecture-related shows and community events centered on design, like ArtPrize.” Find out more about the grant criteria and the application process.
“The impact of the grants to date has been tremendous,” said Farrell. “When organizations are engaging people in fun, thought-provoking design exercises; stimulating conversations about architecture; or raising awareness about architecture as an exciting and challenging profession and its importance in our daily lives, they make it easy for MAF to fulfill its mission. We look forward to what our grantees come up with next.”
Want to help support the kind of programming that promotes awareness of architecture?  Find out more here.
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Dear Friends,
It has been said, “Time flies when you are having fun….” 
Here I am at the end of my two-year term as Michigan Architectural Foundation President, and I stand smiling and wondering where the time went. The projects, scholarships, and productive meetings are certainly a big part of MAF’s accomplishments, but personally, my greatest successes are measured by the relationships and friendships I have developed since I joined the MAF board in 2010.
More recently, I wondered how I would navigate the situation when I became the first non-architect MAF board president. Well, it’s been a ride… much like the Houston Astros as they won the 2017 World Series against many challenges, including hurricanes. Okay maybe not quite the same, but it’s been a great adventure. I feel fortunate and honored to have worked with an executive committee that was comprised of devoted and focused professionals….thanks guys.
We have built a lot of momentum in the past couple of years, and a revised website, more MAF news E-Blasts, video projects, interesting outings and events, and expanded youth programs for children in grades K-12 are just a few of the exciting happenings coming your way in 2018.
My many thanks go out to the MAF Board of Trustees, and my continued best wishes to architect Tom Mathison, as he moves into the MAF president’s role. Be assured that I will continue to remain actively involved in MAF’s efforts to promote public awareness of architecture statewide and nationwide.
As I repeat every month, we are YOUR foundation. It is our mission to make the public aware as to how architecture enriches our lives, and our objective is to spread the news of how MAF helps to do this. Please feel free to contact me, or any of our MAF board members, if you have programming or events we should consider and support into the future.
Thank you,  
Robert P. Washer, Honorary Affiliate AIAMI, FESD
2015-2017 President, Michigan Architectural Foundation
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Park and Lynn Smith in Havana, Cuba

Jeanne Graham, Hon. Aff. AIAMI

Since the Michigan Architectural Foundation began, the dedication of its donors and board members has been instrumental in programs that are connecting people with architecture and its impact on our lives..

For Jeanne Graham, becoming an ardent supporter of architecture started young, after growing up in a mid-century modern home, and attending the Eliel Saarinen-designed Cranbrook Kingswood School. “I was surrounded by nature and great architecture, and being in that lovely environment had a real impact on me,” she remarks. Graham met late husband Ralph on a blind date to the Detroit Institute of Arts in 1961. Together, they built a life filled with art and architecture, raising two sons in what she calls “a wanna-be Frank Lloyd Wright house,” and befriending architects like David Evans, noted for his preservation work. 

When Evans passed away in 1998, “It was Ralph’s idea to make a statement on his behalf,” explains Graham. Through her family’s Clannad Foundation, they established MAF’s Evans-Graham Memorial Preservation Award, which provides vital funding to protect and restore landmark buildings throughout Michigan. Graham serves on the award jury, volunteers with Cranbrook, and leads a dementia care group, among other interests. “I love being able to support important causes, and the legacy of individuals like my husband and David.”

History has always been intertwined with architect Park Smith’s life. Raised in Flint by an artist mother and a travel agent father, his early travels sparked Smith’s interest in history and architecture, and benefit him today in his role as jury chair for the annual MAF Evans-Graham Memorial Preservation Award. “Preserving architecture is an important part of preserving our history, says Smith.  “I’m proud that through my involvement with MAF, I am helping make people think about buildings and the role they play in telling the stories of our history.”

Since retiring from practice in 2009, Smith and wife Lynne have traveled the world. He also serves on MAF’s Programs Committee, and has been an active member of the Flint Historic District Commission, and an adjunct professor at Baker College, teaching courses on the history of architecture.

Jeanne Graham and Park Smith share a love of architecture, and have found the MAF as the vehicle through which they demonstrate it. We are all the beneficiaries.

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MAF President Bob Washer Dedicated to Increasing Architectural Student Opportunities

Bob Washer’s Contributions to the Michigan Architectural Foundation Include:

– Co-founded the first MAF Scholarship Golf Event

– Established the 2nd MAF Dumke Open Golf Event

– Founded the MAF – Detroit Optimist Scholarship

Bob Washer recalls the day when the MAF board asked him to sign on as secretary, a role that eventually leads to that of president. “My first response was, ‘You know I’m not an architect, right?'” he quips. “When the MAF said I was the right guy to eventually become the first non-architect president, it gave me goose bumps,” recalls Bob. “I said, ‘Okay, sign me up!'” They did, of course, and viewed his 45-year career in civil engineering and construction management as an asset, and a way to bring diverse perspectives to the MAF board.

Bob, 2016-2017 MAF board president, has spent the past 27 years helping MAF to expand its programming, raise funds, and elevate the public’s awareness surrounding architecture. With his dedication to creating educational opportunities for architecture students, Bob helped establish scholarships and fundraising events for MAF’s scholarship program. He also serves on MAF’s K5 Education Committee, which develops and supports architecture-based programming for young students.

He also has volunteered his time as president of the Optimist Club of Downtown Detroit; as an event director for the Detroit Special Olympics; and for numerous leadership roles at Farmington High School, where his three children attended. In addition, Bob serves as a mentor for the Future Cities Competition and, since retiring in 2014, continues to do construction-management consulting for clients like the Archdiocese of Detroit.

His so-called retirement gives Bob and his wife, Debbie, more time to spend up north in their Canadian Lakes vacation home – designed, he points out, by an AIA architect. “I’m proud to be living the MAF mission. Architecture enriches my life every day.” 


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For University of Michigan architecture student Ellis Wills-Begley, a classroom discussion on accessible design opened his eyes to understanding the needs of disabled people, and stimulated interest in learning more about how architecture serves as a catalyst for positive social change.

Wills-Begley, of Traverse City, recently received Michigan Architectural Foundation’s first Richard M. and Sidney K. Robinson Scholarship. The $3,500 scholarship is awarded to a University of Michigan student entering their fourth year of study, who aspires to an architectural career that combines imagination as a citizen/artist with responsibility to social, economic, and cultural context.

“By seeing design through the lens of disability, accessibility has the potential to be reframed as a creative opportunity,” said Wills-Begley.  “Truly inclusive design also enhances everyone’s experience in a space, regardless of their physical or psychological abilities.” With his student American Institute of Architects chapter, Wills-Begley helped start the group Initiative for Inclusive Design, whose goal is to increase awareness and dialogue on accessible design, and help influence the way designing for the disabled is currently approached.

“The scholarship jury was very impressed with Ellis’ portfolio of work, as well as his desire to explore how architecture can better anticipate the needs of the disabled community,” said Tim Casai, MAF scholarship committee chair. “He embodies the Robinson’s vision to assist students who want to design buildings that are both creative and responsible in how they enhance, encourage, and enable our lives.

Find out how you can help support the future of our next generation of architectural talent.

Since 2001, MAF has awarded scholarships annually to architectural students completing their Bachelor’s Degree, or enrolled in a Master of Architecture degree program at a Michigan college or university. Scholarship information is available on the MAF website.

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The Michigan Architectural Foundation (MAF) recently awarded Public Awareness Grants to three programs that increase our appreciation of architecture  
  • Project Pipeline Architecture Camp  introduces students to the practice of architecture. Developed by architect Bryan Cook in conjunction with the National Association of Minority Architects (NOMA), free camps are held in Grand Rapids, Detroit, and new this year, Flint. This is the third year the program has received a MAF Public Awareness Grant.
  • The Community Action Network’s CAN Art & Design is a free after-school program where students learn about architecture, sustainability, and design a project. This is the second year MAF had awarded the organization a Public Awareness Grant.
The Michigan Architectural Foundation’s Public Awareness Grants have funded a number of incredible programs which connect people with architecture in creative ways,” said Damian Farrell, FAIA, grant committee chair. “When we see children excited by learning, or adults who look at architecture in a different light after participating in programming we have supported, we are thrilled.”
The Public Awareness Grants are awarded periodically throughout the year. Past grants have helped fund films, lectures, events, workshops and educational programs. Click here for more information on application criteria and how to apply.
Want to help create the kind of programming that promotes awareness of architecture? Find out more here.
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Tireless commitment to educating a future generation of architectural advocates, and to making programs that enrich our lives a success are among the outstanding things you can say about architect Randy Case, AIA. The Michigan Architectural Foundation (MAF) is proud to announce that Randy is the 2017 recipient of MAF’s Leadership Award – and with good reason.
Randy, President and founder of Battle Creek-based Architecture + design, is chair of the MAF’s Kindergarten to 5th Grade (K5) educational program committee.  In this role, he has actively worked to create awareness of the “Architecture: it’s Elementary!” lesson plan curriculum, for use by teachers and parents for students in kindergarten through 5th grades.  He also spearheaded the creation of the ‘ArchiTrek’ video series, which takes students on architectural adventures through significant buildings and their own neighborhoods.
Randy also has been instrumental in many MAF public awareness chapter grant programs, including the highly successful National Organization of Minority Architects’ summer camps.  He serves on the MAF Evans-Graham Memorial Preservation Grant Committee, which provides funding for grassroots preservation projects statewide.
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Start with dedication to supporting architectural education for students of all ages, add in camaraderie and some healthy competition – and you end up one very successful event.
That was recently the case, when architects and other professionals participated in Michigan Architectural Foundation’s 16th annual golf outing at Dearborn Country Club.
The event raises money for MAF educational programs, including college scholarships, ‘Architecture, its Elementary,’ MAF’s K-5 architecture education program, and for the Dumke Fund, which provides children’s architecture books for public libraries and hospital pediatric centers. This year’s nine-hole format event sold out weeks in advance, and more than doubled last year’s financial success,
“MAF’s annual golf outing is one of our most popular fundraising events,” said event co-chair Kevin Shultis.  “As a result, MAF has been able to grow our scholarship fund, and our innovative educational programs. The event also provides a great opportunity to network and spend quality time with colleagues. It’s a win all the way around.”
Winning event teams will have their names engraved on the traveling Pickell Cup. The  names of the women’s overall medalist team will be engraved on the new Dumke Cup, in honor of event co-founder and former AIA Michigan executive director Rae Dumke.
  •  Pickell Cup Front Nine Medalist Team:

Jim Malloure, Allie Frankel, Nevra Kreger

  • Pickell Cup Back Nine Medalist Team:

Gene Gardella, Rich Danes, Romano Curti, Tyler Mohr

  • Dumke Cup Women’s Medalist Team:

Rae Dumke, Michelle Saroki, Kathy Cetlinski, Catherine DeDecker

  • First Place Combined Team:

Craig Thompson, Mike McGlynn, Tricia Ruby, Lindsey Rem with Gene Gardella, Rich Danes, Romano Curti, Tyler Mohr

  • Second Place Combined Team:

Damian Farrell, Katherine Farrell, Stephanie Benz, Bruce Benz with Stephen Barlow, Greg Ansell, Matt Terman, Max Dunigan

  • Third Place Combined Team:

Gene Hopkins, Tamara Burns, Cathy Mosley, Mike Mosley, with Sean Corriveau, Chris Small, Jeff Hausman, Patrick Kanary

Want to help support architectural educational programs that fuel the imaginations and educational goals of students of all ages? Find out more here.
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