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The Academy of Architecture for Health (AAH) provides knowledge which supports the design of healthy environments by creating education and networking opportunities for members of – and those touched by – the healthcare architectural profession.

From AAH President’s desk: December 2019

By Maggie Brown posted 12-10-2019 16:09


From the AAH President's Desk

By Tushar Gupta, FAIA

It has been an honor to serve as President of the AIA Academy of Architecture for Health (AAH) in 2019. As I look back at our journey this year, I am proud of all we have accomplished in reinforcing our mission,"provide knowledge which supports healthy environments through education and networking", and vision "…serving as the authoritative voice for the design of healthy environments".

I express my gratitude to the AAH Board of Directors, Committee Leaders and Committee Members for their commitment to the Academy and for graciously volunteering their time helping us serve the AAH membership. Also, a big thanks to the AIA staff for their assistance and support.

My term’s focus was to reinforce connections at the very root of what we stand for—to remain relevant and continue growth. I am excited to report that we did well in achieving our goals through the following internal and external initiatives:

Reinforce Connection between Local and National

Through the Advisory Group, comprised of leadership from national and local AAH chapters across the country, we increased our sphere of engagement with members at the local and regional level. We reinforced the connection through:
  • establishment of local chapters/leadership in Denver and Pittsburgh while continuing to solicit opportunities in the central and southwest regions
  • national AAH leadership participation in seven local chapter meetings
  • creation of a pathway to national leadership by selecting Marybeth Dietz, Chicago Healthcare Knowledge Committee (KC) chair as the committee chair of the Advisory Group


Reinforce connections with the next generation

We successfully engaged with NextGen across various AAH committees and initiatives, giving them a seat at the table and a voice in strategy and operations. Some of the highlights include:
  • As an invited guest, the Next Generation Committee chair, attended all board meetings in 2019, offering perspective and a heightened focus on issues that are important to emerging professionals.
  • We expanded the network by identifying a NextGen Leader in several of our local AAH chapters
  • In collaboration with the Center for Health Design and Emerald Exposition, we successfully launched the inaugural NextGen Forum at HCD19 which included a plenary discussion and presentations. We also created a NextGen lounge at the conference that provided an area for students and emerging professionals to come together and network. 


Reinforce connection with healthcare industry

As an authoritative voice of healthcare architects, the AAH Outreach Committee reinforced connections with existing relationships and established new connections this year. A few highlights:
  • AAH and American Society of Healthcare Risk Management (ASHRM) members coauthored article titled Safer health care environments by design was published the ASHRM Journal.
  • Representative served as juror for the 2019 Society of Critical Care Medicine ICU Design Competition.
  • AAH established a new relationship with Planetree and participated in a joint plenary session at the 2019 Planetree International Conference.
  • Within the AIA, we have established a connection with the Project Delivery Knowledge Community and are planning to participate at their annual symposium in 2020.

As we look ahead, AAH will be turning 75 in 2020 and we have several things planned for our diamond anniversary through the course of the year, stay tuned. While my presidential term is coming to an end, I look forward to working closely with Kirsten Waltz, 2020 AAH President and the board in furthering AAH’ s mission and vision. Please feel free to contact me should you have any questions or are looking for ways to get engaged in the AIA Academy of Architecture for Health.

Thank you.

Tushar Gupta, FAIA
2019 President, AIA Academy of Architecture for Health