MEET THE AIA CINCINNATI 2020 BOARD OF DIRECTORS

We have three new members this year and some familiar faces from 2019. Since this is our Sesquicentennial year, we asked the Board about their favorite works by AIA Cincinnati chapter founders James K. Wilson, James W. McLaughlin, William Walter, Solomon W. Rogers, and Edwin L. Anderson. You can learn more about the founders and their work on the Architecture Foundation of Cincinnati’s website

AIA Cincinnati 2020 Board of Directors

PRESIDENT

Name: Cynthia Williams

Firm: Cynthia Williams Architect

What project are you working on right now?

New custom home for clients who plan to retire there, and several residential renovations including turning an existing detached 4 car garage into living space for the client’s aging parents.

What is your favorite building designed by an AIA Cincinnati founder and why?

I have two:

Plum Street Temple by James K. Wilson, for its beauty

and

Shillito’s Department Store by James W. McLaughlin because I have fond memories of going shopping there with my mother when I was a child and being impressed by the size of the interior.

Who is your favorite fictional architect?

Elyse Keaton on the 1980s sitcom Family Ties played by Meredith Baxter. Elyse was a successful independent architect and mother, apparently working out of her home while raising a family. She seemed to have successfully combined family and career, although they never showed any of her buildings, nor did they show her doing any of the real work to design them.

When you’re not working, what do you enjoy doing?

When I’m not working, I enjoy singing in my church choir and stargazing with friends at the Cincinnati Observatory.


PRESIDENT ELECT

Name: John Jaskiewicz

Firm: MSA Design

What project are you working on right now?  

Great Oaks – Laurel Oaks Addition/Renovation

What is your favorite building designed by an AIA Cincinnati founder and why?

James W. McLaughlin’s Mabley & Carew Building – It was demolished well before I moved to Cincinnati and I love old photos of it.  If I could go back in time to meet one building in Cincinnati, this would be it.

Who is your favorite fictional architect?

Mr. Wiggin, of course! Portrayed by John Cleese on Monty Python.

When you’re not working, what do you enjoy doing?

Meeting everyone and figuring out how our lives intersect (it’s a small world!), road trips, I read a lot and come up with ideas for books I’ll write someday, cheer for the Bearcats and Reds, and cooking (or trying to cook).


SECRETARY

Name: Angela Mazzi

Firm: GBBN Architects

What project are you working on right now? 

One I’m particularly excited about is A new behavioral health building for Cincinnati Children’s behavioral Health campus in College Hill.

What is your favorite building designed by an AIA Cincinnati founder and why? 

James McLaughlin’s Shillito Department Store (currently lofts at Shillito Place) because it embraced a bold style and the design supported the client’s approach to merchandising.

 Who is your favorite fictional architect? 

Frank Gehry’s voice in the Simpsons (although cartoon Frank is kinda real, right?)

When you’re not working, what do you enjoy doing? 

Yoga, having new adventures, I am also a world class napper


TREASURER

Name: Jeff Raser

Firm: CUDA Studio, LLC

What project are you working on right now?

I’m currently working on the Springfield Engaged Neighborhood Plan – a community plan for a neighborhood adjacent to downtown Springfield, Ohio.

What is your favorite building designed by an AIA Cincinnati founder and why?

My favorite building designed by an AIA Cincinnati founder is the Suire Pharmacy Building, 1857 (later: the Herschede Building) at 2 West 4th Street by James K. Wilson and William Walter.

This building is a fantastic urban building. It forms the northern face of the 4th Street corridor and is an integral piece of the street’s distinctive fabric. It’s grand, and yet a good architectural “team player”, because it contributes to the sum of the parts of the streetscape without crassly screaming for its own attention. 

Who is your favorite fictional architect?

My favorite fictional architect is the Ellen Page character in Inception. She gets to create entire cities without regard to any realities.  

(I was going to choose Art Vandalay, one of George Costanza’s alter egos in Seinfeld. However, he wasn’t really an architect – he only wanted to pretend to be an architect.) 

When you’re not working, what do you enjoy doing?

When I’m not working I like to walk around pedestrian-friendly neighborhoods and photograph great streets and gathering places. I often use these photos in my work….oh wait…


PAST PRESIDENT

Name: Allison McKenzie

Firm: SHP

What project are you working on right now? 

Four schools for Sycamore Community School District (2 new and 2 renovation)

What is your favorite building designed by an AIA Cincinnati founder and why? 

The Cincinnati Zoo Reptile House by James W. McLaughlin. As one of the first purpose-built zoo buildings in the US, it reminds me of the great ability of architects to innovate and problem solve no matter who the client is.

Who is your favorite fictional architect? 

Marshall Darling, the dad in the TV series Clarissa Explains it All.

When you’re not working, what do you enjoy doing? 

Painting, Sewing, Attending UC football games, Traveling.


DIRECTOR

Name: Zoe Gizara

Firm: BHDP Architecture

What project are you working on right now?

Bringing an 1880s Second Empire single-family home in Camp Washington back to life.

What is your favorite building designed by an AIA Cincinnati founder and why?

Although not designed by a founder, Carew Tower Complex, including the Netherland Plaza Hotel by Walter Ahlschlager would have to be my hands down favorite.  One of the earliest examples of multi-use commercial developments in the country, the design married cutting-edge (of the time) structural and construction systems with the most fashionable (of the time) style, Art Deco – which hit it’s full height at the time the building opened in 1930.  It continues to house one of the most inspiring public interior spaces in the city.

Who is your favorite fictional architect?

Peter Mitchell, played by Tom Selleck in Three Men and a Baby.

When you’re not working, what do you enjoy doing?

I enjoy traveling to new places, gardening, trying new recipes and entertaining friends and family.


DIRECTOR

Name: Krutarth “Kru” Jain, AIA, EDAC, LEED AP 

Firm: Champlin Architecture, Cincinnati

What project are you working on right now?

Multiple Healthcare Projects in the region and projects with Hamilton County Facilities and Stadiums. 

What is your favorite building designed by an AIA Cincinnati founder and why?

Cincinnati Arts Museum original building by James W. McLaughlin. This building has impressive interiors and this was one of the first destination I visited in Cincinnati.  

Who is your favorite fictional architect?

Kem Roomhaus from Batman: Death by Design (DC Comics, June 2012) 

When you’re not working, what do you enjoy doing?

I enjoy hiking and exploring different parks. I am always looking for recommendations. 


DIRECTOR

Name: Graham Kalbli, AIA LEED AP

Firm:  New Republic Architecture

What project are you working on right now?

Apple Street Affordable Housing, 

What is your favorite building designed by an AIA Cincinnati founder and why?

James W. McLaughlin’s Art Academy.  I went there in high school as a summer scholar.  This was my first real exposure to urban architecture and the density of the city, so while I didn’t necessarily appreciate its architecture, it got me thinking about my future career.

Who is your favorite fictional architect?

Not a traditional answer, but I like the architect character in this Youtube clip: “so you want to be an architect.” The architect sarcastically berates the profession, and admittedly, there is some truth to it, but at our firm, we’re trying to countermand some of the stereotypes portrayed in the clip.

When you’re not working, what do you enjoy doing?

Anything outdoors and anything with the family, mountain biking, road biking, sailing on Brookville Lake and riding ATVs.


ASSOCIATE DIRECTOR

Name: Paul Karalambo

Firm: Karalambo Planning + Design

What project are you working on right now? 

I am currently (as in just completed the first submission a few hours ago) working on a mixed-use historic renovation building in Defiance, Ohio that will hopefully serve as a major catalyst for more  redevelopment in this small Ohio downtown historic district.

What is your favorite building designed by an AIA Cincinnati founder and why? 

There are a few projects I could easily choose as my favorite, so I will focus on one that is currently in the process of a refresh, although it’s not by an AIA Cincinnati founder. The Dayton Arcade by Frank M. Andrews is an amazing building from both the exterior and interior. The current press exposure of the refresh has been creating opportunities for public tours and I would encourage all architecture lovers to take the time and go check out this very unique project.

 Who is your favorite fictional architect? 

My favorite fictional cheater who pretends to be an architect is without a doubt George Constanza.  It is my all-time favorite quote from the Seinfeld series when George tells Jerry: ‘Why couldn’t you have made me an architect? You know that I always wanted to pretend that I was an architect!.’ 

When you’re not working, what do you enjoy doing? 

It is rare not to be working on some type of architecture project on paper or in the field. Especially after buying a short-sale home for my family that is affectionately referred to as our ‘The Money Pit’ home. That being said, there is no better way to spend my free time then doing projects outside with my two young kids running around causing equal parts chaos and help.


AIA OHIO REPRESENTATIVE

Name: Michael R. Mauch, AIA, NCARB, LEED AP

Firm: RWA Architects, Inc.

What project are you working on right now?  

As one of the two founding Principals, I work on every project in the office in some form or fashion.

What is your favorite building designed by an AIA Cincinnati founder and why?

I couldn’t tell you what projects any founder worked on. I don’t think that way. I don’t like these types of questions around “favorites” or which Architect do I follow because I don’t “follow” anyone. I don’t look at buildings by who “did them,” I like to just look at and experience a building without putting it in someone’s box. If I like it, I like it. If I don’t, I don’t. 

Who is your favorite fictional architect?  

I am guessing that George Costanza doesn’t count as he would just say he was an Architect to impress people and pick up women. In that case, it would have to be Charles Bronson as Paul Kersey in Death Wish (the original only). A close second is Wesley Snipes as Flipper Purify in Spike Lee’s Jungle Fever. 

When you’re not working, what do you enjoy doing?  

In the winter, I like to read. In the summer, I like to garden. I also enjoy scuba diving, no matter the time of year.


ALTERNATE AIA OHIO REPRESENTATIVE

Name: Cori Cassidy, AIA

Firm: Architecture 359

What project are you working on right now? 

Marketing materials for A359’s new subsidiary in Morocco. 

What is your favorite building designed by an AIA Cincinnati founder and why?

The Plum Street Temple (Issac Wise Temple) is a designated National Historic Landmark designed by James K. Wilson. Many people walk by this building every day unaware of the beauty of its soaring interior and magnificent detailing. This place of worship is a hidden gem in downtown Cincinnati (Tours offered! Go check it out).

Who is your favorite fictional architect?

Iggy Peck, (aspiring) architect, is a second-grader who has a penchant for using found materials to create amazing structures. Iggy becomes the hero of the day when he inspires his classmates to collaborate on the construction of a bridge after they become trapped on an island during a field trip. (Iggy Peck, Architect is a picture book by Andrea Beaty and David Roberts)

When you’re not working, what do you enjoy doing?

I enjoy being on the sidelines cheering on my son and daughter at soccer and tennis matches. On the quieter side, I welcome any opportunity to get in my kayak and get out on our local waterways. Our family loves to explore new places and we enjoy time away from daily distractions and busy schedules when we travel together. 

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