July 5, 2023
by: Jenna Reichberg, AIA
Photo: Center for Architecture
Photo: Center for Architecture

The seventh year of the AIANY Civic Leadership Program (CLP) began on Saturday, June 17 2023. Bringing together the selected ten leaders for a day of introductions and inspiration, the kickoff started with key introductions from AIANY and nycoba|NOMA leadership. Matthew Bremer, AIA, 2023 AIANY President, provided a warm welcome on behalf of the chapter and Center for Architecture, expressing AIANY’s dedication to CLP’s advocacy efforts. Meanwhile, Gregory Switzer, AIA, NOMA, President-Elect of AIANY, and Allison Lane, AIA, ASID, NOMA, nycoba|NOMA President, shined light on the continued importance of the relationship between CLP and nycoba|NOMA. Bremer and Switzer also noted that the program is not just a fellowship, but an opportunity for the ten leaders to engage with current world issues and push for progress. The introductions concluded with Donna Walcavage, FASLA, ENV-SP, Co-Chair of the AIANY Design for Risk and Reconstruction Committee, who outlined the committee’s work and its relevance to today’s climate threats. Through these presentations, the CLP cohort began to understand how their leadership is critical for our profession and recognized their duty as citizens to advance innovative ideas and support policies that address today’s societal, environmental, and technological challenges. 

Following these introductions, the five 2023 co-advisors, members of the 2022 CLP class, introduced themselves before leading the day’s agenda: Iyatunde Majekodunmi, NOMA, Architectural Designer at KPF; Kasey Motley, AIA, Sustainable Design Specialist at the Port Authority of New York and New Jersey; Ankita Nalavade, Assoc. AIA, Project Director in the Capital Division of the NYC Economic Development Corporation; Harriet Provine, Assoc. AIA, Planning, Design, and Construction at the Central Park Conservancy; and Bradley Sherburne, AIA, Associate at CetraRuddy Architects. AIANY staff members Suzanne Mecs, Hon. AIANYS, Managing Director; Iyabo Babatunde, Membership and Programs Coordinator, and Jenna Reichberg, Lead CLP Advisor, CLP 17, introduced the cohort to the many resources available to them, including a network of subject-matter experts and AIA members.  

The morning concluded with a Pecha Kucha-style presentation by each leader. The class shared their inspirations, favorite books and movies, stories from childhood, and the best advice they have received, among other personal stories and anecdotes. Their presentations revealed their unique qualities that the 2023 CLP will be another stellar class. 

As the day’s programming continued into the afternoon, five CLP alumni shared their experiences with the program, delving into how their participation in the program enhanced the work they do today. The panel featured Esteban Reichberg, AIA, CLP Co-Founder; Michael Haggerty, CLP ‘18; Christina Brown, Assoc. AIA, NOMA, CLP ‘21; Steven Corsello, Assoc. AIA, CLP ’21; and Motoko Shoboji, AIA, LEED AP BC+C, CLP ’20. It was exciting to see a small portion of the 70+ alumni bond over their common passions.  

The kickoff also featured several icebreakers and a Q&A session, allowing the participants to come together and discuss how they hope to address social inequities in our larger society. The common good we are collectively working towards became a cornerstone of the day’s conversations. To conclude the kickoff, Richard Swett, FAIA, addressed the class as a third-time keynote speaker for the CLP. Swett is the only architect that has ever served in the United States Congress. His dedication to the CLP remains a testament to the importance of advocating for architects and design professionals pursuing public service.


Our website has detected that you are using a browser that will prevent you from accessing certain features. An upgrade is recommended to experience. Use the links below to upgrade your exisiting browser.