Robert Ivy, executive vice president and CEO of American Institute of Architects (AIA) and Russ Davidson, AIA National president, issued a joint video apology Monday night after publishing a widely-criticized post-election statement of support for President-Elect Donald Trump. The video came after days of withering criticism directed at Ivy from scores AIA members, designers, and academics who saw Ivy’s memo as tone-deaf and complacent with the President-Elect’s hateful and racist campaign tactics as well as the incoming administration’s refusal to acknowledge of climate change.
The recorded statement also follows an earlier, fumbled apology that was similarly-panned by the architectural community.
Criticism of Ivy’s support for Trump generated strong condemnation from across the profession, with architecturally-focused advocacy organizations like QSAPP, Architecture Lobby, and even from local AIA chapters and affiliated groups penning letters in opposition to Ivy’s statement. Prominent architecture firms and their principals like Katherine Darnstadt of Design, Micheal Sorkin of Terreform, and Maryam Eskandari of MIIM Designs also voiced strong outcry against the memo.
In their apology video, Ivy and Davidson pledge to prioritize issues of diversity, equity, inclusion, and climate change moving forward and to embark on a listening tour to hear members’ concerns more closely.