President’s Message

Kris Barkley, AIA 2014 Chapter President
Kris Barkley, AIA 2014 Chapter President

Kris Barkley, AIA
2014 Chapter President

January and the New Year is often seen as a point of beginning, a fresh start and a look ahead with optimism about the future…

Okay, while it’s kind of fun to think about for a moment, my pragmatic side quickly moves to a continuation of our efforts of the past few years. There is much to look forward to but it’s not just the arrival of a new calendar, it’s all about building on our momentum. I feel (along with many others, I believe) extremely fortunate to be a part of this Chapter and the renewed energy that has come about over the past few years. We have a unique collection of remarkable individuals here and I encourage all to participate. It is truly a pleasurable and valuable experience.

That being said, we do have a couple of specific areas of focus that I believe will contribute to our past efforts and serve to enrich our regional environment:

Promotion of Design as a Necessary Component of the Built Environment – Architects are uniquely positioned to lead the design and construction process of projects to ensure that goals of sustainability, efficiency and construct-ability are achieved while elevating the human condition. Few people outside of our profession understand this, leaving only ourselves to speak up for the value that we can collectively provide.

Support for Development of a Regional School of Architecture - A daunting task to be sure, but certainly a worthwhile goal. Many prospective students are turned away from the profession because of the lack of space within current State programs. Northern California is even further behind other areas of the State in this regard. We are excited to be redoubling our efforts with a working group that includes AIA Central Valley members, Doug McCauley (AIACV member and California Architects Board Executive Officer) and the AIA California Council to make the dream of a regional school a reality.

Repositioning – As AIA National works through the intricacies of this effort we will continue to look for opportunities to voice our thoughts and shape new policies.

Architecture FestivalOf course we fully intend to continue to find ways to improve our annual fall Architecture Festival, as well as our current educational and networking programs and look forward to continuing to build new alliances and relationships with related organizations.

Many thanks to our now past-president Robert Chase, AIA and departing Associate Director Chris Brown, Associate AIA for their vast contributions and energy. Many, many thanks to our departing Allied and Public Directors Marq Truscott, FASLA and Richard Rich, respectively, for contributing an impressive amount of time and talent to our organization and frankly, for putting up with us. That can’t be easy…

Finally, I would like to welcome our new Board members: Director Ed Mojica, AIA and Associate Director Laura Wood, Associate AIA, as well as Allied Director Carol Parra-Little of Corporate Design Group.

For those of you that would like to get more involved please let me know. We will gladly find a role for you within the Chapter that fits your interests and expertise. Cheers!

Kristopher Barkley, AIA, 2014 Chapter President

Newell Arnerich, AIA, Candidate for State Assembly

submitted by Nick Docous, AIA

Did you know that the following issues – important to all of us in the Design and Construction Industry – continue to be considered by the California Legislature, including:

  • A sales tax on professional services;
  • CEQA Reform;
  • Project delivery methods on public projects, in particular Design-Build;
  • Competition requirements for public projects;
  • Affordable housing;
  • Healthcare facilities standards.

Wouldn’t you feel more comfortable if an Architect were a Member of the Legislature when these issues are discussed and voted on?

Well, the Design and Construction Industry has a tremendous opportunity to help an AIA Member become the first licensed Architect elected to the California State Legislature.  Newell Arnerich, a candidate for the California State Assembly – running for the 16th Assembly District (Alameda and Contra Costa counties), is that Architect.  He is a practitioner and a firm owner since 1978 with offices in Oakland and Los Angeles.

Newell’s candidacy is an opportunity for the profession and our colleagues – engineers, builders, designers – to help elect the first licensed Architect to the California Legislature!

In my opinion Newell embodies the definition of a Citizen Architect:  He has been a member of Danville Town Council for the past 18 years and currently serves as Mayor.  Under his leadership, Danville has become a fiscally responsible city (a credit rating of Aa1 by Moody’s, the second highest rating possible), and has wisely used its redevelopment authority to improve the livability and attractiveness of Danville.

Additionally, Newell understands the business of architecture and he knows the issues our industry faces – many of them the rooted in legislation passed by Assembly and Senate members who do not understand the Design and Construction Industry.

Newell is extremely well versed in public policy and is very intelligent and well spoken.  For example, on the issue of the uninsurable indemnification/duty-to-defend obligation clause found in many contracts with public entities, which is an issue that the Legislature refuses to address, Newell provided lead testimony on this issue for the AIACC in 2005.  His testimony, as an Architect and a Mayor, successfully convinced the Legislature to support legislation that placed restrictions on indemnification provisions.  We have all been beneficiaries of this effort.

As far as we know, there has never been a licensed architect elected to the California Legislature.  There have been engineers, car dealers, teachers, doctors, union officials, and many, many attorneys.  There was even an undertaker elected to the Assembly, but never an Architect.  I trust you agree that the opportunities Newell’s election could provide regarding the profession’s advocacy efforts are tremendous.

In order for his candidacy to be viable his campaign needs financial support.  It is strategically vital that Newell’s campaign raise a substantive amount by the end of June, which is the end of the first reporting period.  Other groups who are interested in the outcome of this race will use this report to determine if Newell is a credible candidate and worthy of support.  Let me put it this way – the more money Newell’s campaign raises by this deadline, the more seriously he’ll be taken as a candidate.  We must support him in this effort.

Please go to to make a donation online – even if it’s only $25; every donation helps and counts!

In times when resources are scarce we need to look at – and carefully consider – where investing them will result in the highest return.  I ask that you each consider helping Newell’s campaign and give the architectural profession a strong, qualified, and eloquent voice in the California Legislature.

Thanks for your consideration.  If you need more information and want to “get to know” Newell, here is a link to a video he made at the AIA Convention in Denver just last week:

Academy of Architecture for Health (AAH) ~ “Guide to Accessibility for California Healthcare Facilities”

This 5-hour seminar will provide an in-depth study and analysis of the upcoming 2013 CBC and the correct application to healthcare facilities. This seminar is example-driven, with floor plans and case-studies that are presented in a dynamic and engaging format.  This will be a real and challenging seminar with specific application to complex healthcare projects.

Discussion will include:

  • Completely re-written 2013 Accessibility requirements
  • Compare/ Contrast to 2010 CBC and 2010 ADA
  • New accessibility requirements from OSHPD
  • Case Study Application of Floor Plans
  • Remodeling Analysis
  • Discussion of ADA Barrier Removal
  • New Requirements for Medical Office Buildings

Each seminar attendee will receive a “Guide to Accessibility for California Healthcare Facilities” binder with complete text from the 2013 CBC, floor plan examples, code interpretations and analysis arranged in the new CBC 10 Division format.  A ‘Must’ seminar for healthcare architects and project managers.

 This course will allow you to earn the full 5 hours of ADA credit in one day.

Where: AIACV, 1400 S Street, Suite 100, midtown Sacramento

When: Thursday, July 25th, 2013

Time: 9am – 2:30pm

Cost: AIA members: $100 (+ svc fee) and Non-members: $150 (+ svc fee)

To register for this course visit:

Click here for flyer

About the instructor:

Bill Zellmer, AIA, CASp is a licensed architect with CASp certification and 34 years of experience as a practicing architect.  In 1995 Bill started work as a Senior Architect at OSHPD and has developed an expertise in accessibility requirements specifically related to healthcare facilities. In 2012 Bill joined Vanir Construction Management where he performs accessibility surveys for healthcare facilities. The diversity and depth of Bill’s career has given him a well-rounded perspective on accessibility as it relates to healthcare.

The course is open to AIACV Chapter members, as well as non-members. Please register early, space is limited.

Visit , e-mail or call
916- 444-3658 for more information.

Community Event: Living Building Challenge ~ Dry Run Presentation

This unique charrette includes a Dry Run Presentation that is scheduled to debut at the 2013 International Living Future unConference in Seattle, WA. The focus of this special event is to be successful at achieving Living Buildings with an contractual delivery method, yet the main focus will be towards the Owner, Architect and Contractor on the Design-Bid-Build or Lump Sum Methods.

For more information click here for the flyer

Presented by:

Susan Rainier, AIA ArchitectSteve Schultz, Preconstruction Manager, Turner Construction
Neil Steiner, Energy Analyst, Glumac
Travis Coney, Chemical Engineering Student, Berkeley Community College

Date: Wednesday, May 8th, 2013

Time: 4:30 – 6: 00pm

Location: AIACV gallery, 1400 S St., Ste. 100, Sacramento

Refreshments and beverages will be served

RSVP to Susan Rainier at or call 530-902-9447

From the desk of the AIACV President







By Robert Chase, AIA
2013 Chapter President

At the beginning of each year, the Board of Directors gathers at an annual retreat to set goals and priorities to focus on throughout the coming year for our members.  Following are some of these areas of focus for 2013:

Continued public outreach / Marketing of the value of AIA Architects in our region:

Planning is already underway for our 2013 Architecture Festival coming this October.  Our first festival last year was a tremendous success, and it was unanimously agreed that the Chapter would repeat it again this year.  While last year’s event spanned 2-1/2 weeks, the Festival committee is condensing the 2013 event to 10 days, and combining it with a re-envisioned Design Awards program geared toward the general public.

We are pleased to be working with Comstock’s Business magazine this year as our Festival Media partner.

We continue to support activities like ACE Mentoring, the Sac Modern Home Tour, and have recently joined the Sacramento Metro Chamber of Commerce.

Focus on Emerging Professionals (EP)/Associates and Students:

In my Installation message this past January, I emphasized the critical importance of our younger generation of professionals. Our Emerging Professional group, led by Mike Novak, AIA, has held and is planning more events to bring value to our future leaders.  These include the Speed Mentoring evening at the chapter, that featured the participation of our State Architect, Chet Widom, FAIA and many other seasoned and mid-level architects.

The Chapter’s EP group is also collaborating with other groups such as the Young Leaders Group (YLG) from ULI—which includes like-minded young professionals in the real estate and development world.  These groups will be sharing valuable life experiences at events like the upcoming pub Crawl; summer open house BBQ; Soul of the City; Park(ing) Day; ARE seminars with Funkaar and a new study group meeting regularly at the MAARS building.  The EP group has also received a grant from the Morris Gee Scholarship Fund to buy new materials and to subsidize attendance at future events.  The key focus of this group is ‘adding value and fun’ to their members.


We continue to increase our involvement in advocacy for important and relevant issues throughout our community.  Most recently (and with to kudos to Past-president Bruce Monighan, AIA who has been leading a community development working group with the City of Sacramento for several years now) Chapter leadership spoke at the Sacramento City Council in support of a ground-breaking new Planning and Development Code for the City, developed by staff with input from our chapter.

We also continue to be involved as member of Region Builders, a group who has made great strides in influencing positive planning and building policies in various cities in the region.

To expand our professional advocacy opportunities, as mentioned previously we have joined the Sacramento Metro Chamber of Commerce, with the goal of being considered a ‘trusted advisor’.

As an enhancement to our Chapter’s identity and exposure in the community, Comstock’s Business Magazine featured several articles in the March issue recently, including an interview with me, your President, as well as a separate article featuring past Chapter President Monighan and other members from local design firms.  This was very good press for our Chapter.

Membership retention of Current Members/Growth of New Members:

In an effort to examine our relevance, particularly with regard to AIA National’s Re-Positioning Initiative, we recently conducted a survey to all of the licensed architects in our Chapter 17 county region—not just our members. We appreciate the many individuals that responded, and plan to use the results to help focus our events and activities in the coming year.  A membership task force has been formed to plan a special roundtable to address licensure, support of EP’s and member firms’ involvement with the AIA as well as develop a special “member’s only” event in the future.

Alternate Career Tracks:

Also in my Installation message, I indicated the importance of discussing and exploring alternate career paths for architects—given the significant impact the economy has had on our profession these last 5-6 years.  There are many opportunities for architects in roles other than the traditional architectural office scenario we have been accustomed to over the last century or more.  These include roles in teaching, government, politics, development, etc.

Please join us on Tuesday, May 14th at 5:30 at the Chapter gallery for a “Pathways Panel” event, where we will hear from and dialogue with members who have chosen alternate roles to apply their architectural training.

In closing, we see signs that the economy may be improving, but these signs still appear to be rather subtle to many.  All the more reason why the AIA, and our Chapter in particular, continue to work diligently to be relevant to our valued members in these changing times.  The Board, Chapter staff and I offer you a commitment to do so.





AIACV & USGBC present: Living Building Challenge Case Study

What would it take to bring a LEED Platinum building to the level of a Living Building? Susan Rainier, AIA, LEED AP BD+C and Neil Steiner, Energy Analyst, LEED AP BD+C will present a case study comparing the University of California Davis Graduate School of Management LEED Platinum building to the new Bullitt Center in Seattle which is pursuing Living Building certification through the Living Building Institute. Learn what is needed to achieve LEED Platinum in a stand-alone geothermal building. See how the Bullitt Center exceeded these requirements to achieve the title “Living Building” and learn about the behavioral learning curve and adjustments needed by the occupants in both buildings.

The Living Building Challenge will be presented to facilitate the understanding about this great movement and its potential to change our built world and make a significant difference towards saving the environment. There will also be a brief discussion of starting a Living Building Collective in Sacramento. We hope you will join us for this inspiring presentation.


Neil Steiner, LEED BD+C, Energy Analyst, Glumac
Originally inspired in a retreat with Bob Berkebile in 2006, Neil has been focusing his efforts for regenerative design ever since. At Glumac, he is responsible for modeling lighting, HVAC, renewable energy and envelope systems for new and existing buildings. He is passionate about advancing the building industry for greater energy efficiency, conservation of resources and cost. He received his BS in Architectural Engineering from the University of Kansas and is working on MS for later this year. As Living Building Challenge Ambassador he has engaged a number of influential people to help champion the effort in the Sacramento region.

Susan Rainier, AIA, LEED AP BD+C, Senior Project Manager, UC Davis
Susan has 30 years in ecological design and construction experience. 14 years overseeing design and construction as Senior Project Manager for UC Davis where she led a project to LEED Platinum and Design Build Excellence. Susan serves on the USGBC Capital Branch Leadership Committee. Susan is the founder of the “VISIONARY” series that brings leading edge thinkers for presentations in the Sacramento Region to inspire. She has worked on a wide range of building types, including custom residential, commercial, governmental and institutional. She is a permaculture advocate and practitioner.  She has a life long study of sacred architecture, proportion and self-sufficient design. Susan has international experience, speaks fluent Italian and is honored to be a Living Building Ambassador.

When: Wednesday, March 20th, 2013

Time: 5:30 – 7:00pm

Where: AIACV Gallery, 1400 S Street, Suite 100, midtown Sacramento

Click here to register. Please register by Tuesday, March 19th at noon.

Click here for flyer

In Memory of George Higgins, AIA Emeritus

AIA Central Valley is sad to share that George Calvin Higgins, AIA-Emeritus  passed away on February 24th, 2013. George was Chapter president in 1973. Our condolences to his family and friends.

Members are invited to a reception and celebration of his life  at the North Ridge Country Club on March 10, from 2-4pm, where he was a longtime member.

For the full obituary please click here.


Community Event: Holiday Fine Art Market & Gift Boutique

Eight artists have joined together for this distinctive holiday show including AIA member, Paul Almond, AIA who will be donating 25% of his proceeds from the sales of his barrel stave functional art pieces and paintings to the local non-profit Triumph Cancer Foundation,

When: Saturday, December 8th, 2012

Where: The Factory, 320 Alhambra Blvd., Sacramento

Time: 12 – 8pm

Admission is free

Click for flyer