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2017 Design Awards

Tuesday, November 28, 2017
Gensler Oakland, 2101 Webster St #2000, Oakland, CA 94612
$35 AIA Members, $45 Non-members
Purchase Tickets Here
Please note, winning firms will not be notified in advance of the reception.

***New for 2017! A people’s choice award as selected by reception attendees.


  • Projects must be designed and submitted by an architect.
  • Projects must have been completed after January 1, 2010.
  • AIA East Bay members may submit projects from anywhere.
  • Non-member architects may submit projects located in the chapter’s four counties: Alameda, Contra Costa, Napa and Solano.

Project Types

Projects of all types will be viewed, including, but not limited to:

  • Commercial, office, and mixed-use
  • Industrial, laboratories, and hospitals
  • Transportation and parking structures
  • Places of worship
  • Libraries, schools, and other institutions
  • Historic preservation, adaptive reuse, renovation and restoration
  • Single & multi-residential, dormitories, affordable & temporary housing

Registration per project: $200 AIA Members / $300 Non-members

Mark your calendars and save the date!

Submittal Deadline: Noon, Monday, October 30, 2017 -extended deadline!
Awards Pre-Submittal Meeting: Wednesday, September 27, 2017 (for those who have submittal questions)
Awards Reception & Presentation: Tuesday, November 28, 2017
Click here to purchase reception tickets.

Please note, all submittals will be made via Dropbox. Please attend the pre-submittal meeting if you have not used Dropbox and have technical questions.

The 2017 Design Awards jurors:

Karen Fiene, FAIA, LEED AP
Mills College
Oakland, California

Karen Fiene leads campus design and environmental stewardship for Mills College, a private women’s college in East Oakland. Mills’ mission to provide education for young women to become future leaders in a complex global economy compliments Karen’s interest in the design of places that foster creative learning. Since joining the campus in 2006, she has overseen the largest expansion in the College’s history and has engaged high profile design firms with a commitment to sustainability and design excellence. Karen was co-designer of the first LEED platinum building in Oakland, one of two LEED projects on the campus. As co-chair of the Sustainability Committee, she is leading efforts to meet the net zero goals of the President’s Climate Commitment and Campus Climate Action Plan. Karen was instrumental in receiving a Getty Heritage Grant and was a collaborator on the resulting publication; Celebrating the Cultural Landscape Heritage of Mills College, 2008. Current projects include the renovation of Lisser Hall, a 116 year-old performing arts theater designed by Willis Polk.

Formerly with EHDD, Karen gained diverse experience with academic and exhibit related projects with zoos, museums and aquariums. Karen served as President of EHDD for the last three of her 13 years there leading the firm through a critical transition period. She founded Karen Fiene Architects in 1999 focusing on the design and planning of dynamic learning environments prior to joining Mills College.

Craig Steely, AIA
Craig Steely Architecture
San Francisco, California

Craig Steely is a California and Hawaii based architect whose buildings have been described as true and unique hybrids of these two environments.  They embrace the realities of the environment and our connection/separation to it over the subjugation of it, all the while focusing on developing a singular architecture rooted in its context.  Active projects include work on the Big Island of Hawaii, as well as several along the coast of California—from Sea Ranch to San Francisco to Big Sur.

He received his architecture degree from Cal Poly, San Luis Obispo. He has lectured at the University of Hawaii, University of California at Berkeley, Cal Poly and at many conferences including the Monterey Design Conference.  His work has been awarded recognition by the American Institute of Architects and published widely in books and periodicals. In 2009 he was selected as an “Emerging Talent” by the AIA California Council. His office was chosen top firm in the 2013 Residential Architect Magazine leadership awards.

Marc L’Italien, FAIA, LEED AP BD+C
San Francisco, California

Marc is a Principal with HGA in San Francisco, where he leads the Arts/Community/Education practice. He is an innovative thinker with a creative voice in the design of major public projects. Many of his projects have broken new ground in high-performance design. Marc has been involved in higher education, museum, science center, aquarium, and zoological park projects. He has deep a passion for—and expertise in—the symbiotic relationships between landscape, architecture, and exhibits.

Prior to joining HGA, he led the design of the new Exploratorium at Pier 15 in San Francisco, which is a LEED Platinum Certified adaptive reuse project, expected to become the largest net zero energy museum in the United States. Other noteworthy accomplishments include the headquarters for the David and Lucile Packard Foundation in Los Altos, CA, a Certified Net Zero Energy Building with the International Living Future Institute; Valparaiso University’s Arts and Sciences Building, which is adjacent to his award-winning 2004 Christopher Center for Library and Information Resources in Indiana; and Factor 10 House, an affordable case-study house completed for the City of Chicago’s Departments of Housing and the Environment. The Exploratorium, Packard Foundation and Factor 10 House projects are all AIA COTE Top Ten Awards recipients.

Marc is currently leading the design of the Westwood Hills Nature Center outside Minneapolis and working with SWA on a Campus Master Plan for SF State University in San Francisco. He holds degrees from the University of Michigan and Yale University.


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Dealey Renton & Associates

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2015 East Bay Design Award Winner: East Oakland Sports, ELS Architecture and Urban Design
Photo Credit: David Wakely Photography