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Architects Recognized for Public Service in the Cedar Rapids and Iowa City Communities

Tuesday, April 30, 2013  

Architects Recognized for Public Service in the Cedar Rapids and Iowa City Communities 


Des Moines, Iowa (April 30, 2013) – Several members of the American Institute of Architects, Iowa Chapter (AIA Iowa) have been recognized as  participants in the AIA Iowa Citizen Architect Program by AIA Iowa for service to their communities.


Martha Norbeck, AIA, of C-Wise Design & Consulting, serves as a board member for the Environmental Advocates.  This organization encourages awareness of local environmental issues and looks to promote creative solutions to environmental problems in the community.  They host public educational events, work on water quality and other issues affecting quality of life as well as administer grant programs.


Bruce Hamous, AIA, of OPN Architects, serves as a member of the board of directors of the US Green Building Council (USGBC), Iowa Chapter, working to promote buildings that are environmentally responsible, profitable and healthy places to live and work. The USGBC is a non-profit organization dedicated to sustainable building design and construction. Hamous also serves on the Indian Creek Nature Center Sustainability Committee and the Board of Directors of Prairiewoods (an eco-sprituality retreat center).


Also of OPN Architects, Brad Fritz, AIA, serves as commissioner for the Linn County Historic Preservation Commission.  One of nine Linn County residents serving on this Commission, Fritz was appointed to by the Board of Supervisors for a three year term, to express his interest and expertise in architecture, architectural history, historic preservation, planning, building rehabilitation, conservation in general or real estate.  "I believe that preserving historic structures not only strengthens the culture within a community, but also encourages the sustainable practice of adaptive reuse and repurposing of built assets,” explains Fritz.


As Chapter Advisor of the Order of DeMolay, Kyle Martin, AIA, Martin Gardner Architecture, works closely with boys aged 12-21 to build character and leadership qualities through weekly local activities involving civic service, social events and fundraising initiatives. "With my architecture industry connections, I was able to secure an opportunity with the National Register of Historic Places where we were given our own room to rehabilitate,” says Martin. "In that respect, it provided an opportunity to teach the membership (and building Owners) about renovation, restoration, preservation, craftsmanship and architectural style as well.”


Bradd Brown, AIA, OPN Architects, has been elected as President of the Theatre Cedar Rapids Board of Trustees. Theatre Cedar Rapids is a non-profit organization that provides a community theatre with live shows in the heart of downtown Cedar Rapids.  "I feel strongly that live theatre must be celebrated and promoted,” says Brown.  "Without TCR, there would be no outlet for their creativity.”


Michael Gumm, AIA, Shive-Hattery is a member of the Board of Adjustments for the City of Cedar Rapids.  In this role, he assists with approvals or variances to amendments as well as decides appeals of any final administrative decision made by the zoning administrator or director of community development.  Gumm was also appointed to the Mechanical-Fire Board of Appeals for the City of Cedar Rapids where he hears appeals for interpretations or modifications of the building code made by city building inspectors and/or the trades and building manager during the plans review process.


Elected as a board member for the Cedar Rapids Iowa City Architects Council, Sarah A’Hearn, AIA, Heery International, helps to maintain a strong and active group of architectural professionals who are able to provide outreach and educational activities to the membership and area communities.


The Citizen Architect Program recognizes AIA Iowa members who represent AIA's values in their community through public service. To find out more about this program please visit


Since 1857, the American Institute of Architects has represented the professional interests of America's architects. AIA Iowa, headquartered in Des Moines, is a statewide affiliate of the national AIA.


AIA members express their commitment to excellence in design and are proactive in the design of livable communities. Members adhere to a code of ethics and professional conduct that assures the client, the public, and colleagues of an AIA member architect's dedication to the highest standards in professional practice. For more information, go to or call 515.244.7502.


For interviews or pictures, please contact Jessica Reinert at AIA Iowa, (515) 244-7502, or e-mail her at


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AIA Iowa Firm Members