Professional architect Robert Ivy is the CEO of the American Institute of Architects (AIA). The institution is based in Washington, DC and has over 260 chapters world wide. It was founded in 1857 and currently has over 90,000 members. A major focus of the organization is to advocate for architects’ exposure as well as act as a resource center for architects all over the world. Much of the success of AIA is the result of Robert Ivy’s leadership.
Robert Ivy was born in Columbus, Mississippi. He has degrees from Sewanee University and Tulane University. He is the author of the book, Fay Jones: Architect and frequently speaks to audiences coast to coast concerning the role of architecture and how it affects our lives.
Robert’s reign at AIA began in 2011. While CEO, his focus is on changing the organization’s goals to reflect the needs of architects in the 21st century. For example, he desires to increase public awareness of architecture and the relevance it has to the world. Prior to coming to AIA, Robert Ivy was the Vice President and editorial Director of McGraw-Hill Construction Media.
As CEO, Ivy has been essential to the building of a new infrastructure that utilizes technology as well as initiating an award-winning public awareness campaign. He is currently restructuring AIA’s resources so that the organization can be used to better prepare architects in today’s world. Issues such as climate change, sustainability, and the impact of design on public health all affects today’s architects. and Ivy wants them to be aware of these issues.
Robert Ivy wants architects to be advisors, a “creative consultant” if you will. Architects should be available to assist in solving a wide range of problems that affects industries and companies. His desire is to be an asset, not only to architects, but to the general public as well. Issues such as public health and climate changes directly affect architecture today. Therefore, architects need to work hand in hand with the public on these issues.
Ivy stated in an interview with ZDNet that architects have been guided by different schools of thought generation to generation. These ideas direct how architects approach their work and, in turn, impact how buildings have been built. Robert Ivy is leading this new generation of architects by emphasizing the importance of social good and public health and how they play such a significant role in architecture.