Gala 2013 Highlight: Joseph P. Riley Jr. Award
Honoree Mayor Mick Cornett of Oklahoma City

On March 22nd, 2013, the American Architectural Foundation (AAF) in association with The United States Conference of Mayors (USCM) awarded Oklahoma City Mayor Mick Cornett the Joseph P. Riley Jr. Award for Leadership in Urban Design. Mayor Cornett was honored at the 24th annual Accent on Architecture Gala in Washington, D.C.

The award celebrates Mayor Cornett for his contributions to Oklahoma City’s Metropolitan Area Projects (MAPS). Building on the transformative design leadership and achievements of the previous two mayoral administrations, Mayor Cornett continues to advance an innovative design process as a catalyst for improving lives and strengthening his city. His commitment to and vision for MAPS has helped Oklahoma City become an even more vibrant model of urbanism—one that others are emulating across the country.

More information about the Accent on Architecture Gala is available here.

Video Produced by GVI.


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Posted in: Accent on Architecture Gala, Center for Design & the City, Center for the Advancement of Architecture, Civic Leaders + Government, Creative Placemaking, Design Leadership, Infrastructure, Joseph P. Riley Jr. Award, Media Type, Video

The American Architectural Foundation has been dedicated to advancing the role of architecture and design in American society since its founding in 1943 by the American Institute of Architects.

In its 75 years in existence the Foundation’s work has taken many forms — from educational programming and exhibitions in its early years to large-scale design initiatives and programs —all of which serve to create a rich legacy.

As the managing partner of the Mayors’ Institute on City Design for twenty years, in partnership with the National Endowment for the Arts and the United States Conference of Mayors, the Foundation helped move the needle on design and cities. And, through its other signature programs like Save America’s Treasures in partnership with National Parks Service, the Sustainable Cities Design Academy, and Design for Learning, the Foundation has provided critical design leadership training and technical assistance to hundreds of elected officials, education leaders, business leaders, and other key decision makers in the design process.

In recent years, cities and civic leaders have embraced design and design thinking in a way that could not have been imagined when the Foundation begin its work back in 1943 — and AAF’s role in this transformation is a source of great pride for the Foundation. With this increased interest in the role of design in shaping our cities came a proliferation of new organizations to support and facilitate this cultural shift. These advances in the role of design in American society and changes in the nonprofit design sector, coupled with the departure of the organization’s longest-serving CEO, prompted the Foundation’s Board to embark on an intensive and lengthy process to examine the ongoing role and work of the Foundation.

As the Board of Regents reflected on the positive changes of the cultural value of design, the accomplishments of the Foundation, and how the legacy of the Foundation’s work is being carried out by its former staff in new roles and organizations across the country, they reached the conclusion that the American Architectural Foundation had accomplished what it set out to do. As a result, the Foundation began to complete its remaining programs and wind down its operations in the Summer of 2018 and the organization’s endowments have been distributed to allied organizations. The Foundation’s research and reports will remain available on its website as a resource to the field.

The Foundation’s work would not have been possible without the incredible talents of its many staff over the decades, the generous support of its funders, and the tireless dedication of its civic & design partners across the country. The Board remains deeply proud of the significant contributions Foundation has made in its 75-year history and would like to acknowledge that this would not have been possible without the efforts, dedication, and support from so many of you.