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Architects Recognized for Public Service in the Cedar Rapids/Marion/Mount Vernon area

Tuesday, April 5, 2016   (0 Comments)

Architects Recognized for Public Service in the Cedar Rapids/Marion/Mount Vernon area

Cedar Rapids, Iowa (April 1, 2016) – Twelve local architects and members of the American Institute of Architects, Iowa Chapter (AIA Iowa) have been recognized for their service to the communities of Cedar Rapids, Marion and Mount Vernon.  They are participants in the AIA Iowa Citizen Architect Program sponsored by AIA Iowa:

Mitchel Bloomquist, Assoc. AIA, of Sauter, Baty & Bloomquist Inc. in Mount Vernon was appointed a member of the Linn County Historic Preservation Commission. The Linn County Historic Preservation Commission's primary duties involve the built environment. As a member of the Commission, Bloomquist is involved in discovering, refining, and promoting a responsible and sensitive approach to preservation that goes beyond the visual aspects of a resource to preserve all of the experiential qualities.

Bruce Hamous, AIA, of Sunshine Sustainable Design in Cedar Rapids was elected Chapter Secretary of the Board of Directors, of the U. S. Green Building Council, Iowa Chapter. The USGBC is a non-profit organization dedicated to promoting sustainable building design and construction. Hamous is responsible for providing leadership to the organization, promoting sustainable building practices, fostering programs that help educate the public and advocating for organizations, corporations and local and state governing bodies to commit to the adoption of policies that mandate energy efficiency and environmentally friendly buildings.  In addition to his service to the USGBC, Hamous serve on the board of directors of Prairiewoods (an eco-spirituality center) where he volunteered his services as a LEED AP to assist Prairiewoods in obtaining LEED for Existing Buildings Gold Certification.  He also serves on the Board of Directors of the Hawkeye Area Boy Scout Council and volunteers as a Merit Badge Counselor for the Architecture and Sustainability Merit Badges.

Stacey Hanley, Assoc. AIA, of OPN Architects in Cedar Rapids was appointed to Board Member of Matthew 25 and Past Chair of the Iowa Architectural Foundation (IAF). Hanley serves on the Board and the Community Development committee of Matthew 25, providing guidance to the organization on their various affordable housing projects, urban farm, and other community outreach projects. She also volunteers her time by providing design work for the urban farm. Additionally, she is working on a pro-bono project through OPN Architects to renovate Matthew 25's historic building in the Kingston Village in Cedar Rapids. As the Past Chair of the IAF, an organization that fosters design awareness of the existing and historic built environment, Hanley serves on the Executive Committee of the Board of Trustees and as a member of the fundraising committee where she actively recruits new volunteers in the Eastern Iowa and spreads the message of the IAF to the Eastern side of the state.

Michael LeClere, AIA, of Martin Gardner Architecture in Marion serves as an ACE Mentor, Marion Natural Resources Subcommittee member, and a C.A.B.A. Coggon Area Betterment Association member. As an ACE Mentor LeClere helps students design and build small scale projects in their local community. As a member of the Marion Natural Resources Subcommittee he helps to establish priorities and opportunities for the growth and stewardship of existing natural resources, opportunities to tie into other local and regional trail systems, provide physical and visual access to waterways, and opportunities for the public to learn and play utilizing our natural systems and features. C.A.B.A. began as LeClere’s Master’s thesis while in graduate school.  In 2012, LeClere presented his project to the community, revealing to them his vision of a vibrant Coggon. Within a year, the Coggon Area Betterment Association was formed and grew from a handful of members into dozens of volunteers who support ideas and activities that promote community cohesion and spirit.

David Martin, AIA, of Martin Gardner Architecture in Marion serves as a Board Member of Uptown Marion. Uptown Marion is the Main Street Iowa sponsored organization to support the redevelopment and prosperity of the downtown Marion, Iowa district.  Martin is responsible for attending monthly meetings of the board and the Design Committee which he co-chairs.  He also help the organization through fundraising, installation of sculptures along the street, and support of the overall goals of the Main Street program.

Kyle Martin, AIA, of Martin Gardner Architecture P.C. in Marion serves multiple roles within Marion and the surrounding area. As the Secretary of the Marion Park Board, Martin is responsible for taking Board Meeting Minutes and attending various public events. As the Secretary, Board Member and PR Advocacy Committee member, of the Housing Fund for Linn County, he is also responsible for taking Board Meeting Minutes and attend various public events. Martin is also the Chairman and Advisory Board Member of Cedar Rapids DeMolay. There he leads the Adult Advisory Board to coordinate and lead youth events. As the Chairman of the Masonic Youth Committee, Martin works with the committee to make recommendations to Grand Master's Program toward youth. As the Treasurer and Trustee of the Marion Lodge #6 Scholarship Committee, Martin coordinates investments, reviews scholarship applications, and receives and dispenses funds. As a Committee Member of the Parks and Rec Master Planning Committee, Martin attend meetings and provides input. Finally, as a  Committee Member for the Art in the Alley Project, Martin attends meetings and provides input in order for the committee to procure artists.

Michael Morman, AIA, of Shive-Hattery in Cedar Rapids serves as Board Member of the USGBC Iowa Chapter. The USGBC Iowa Chapter works to promote and enable the integration of sustainable practices into Iowa's built environment.  Morman is responsible for providing guidance and direction to the chapter. He also participates in the committees and is proponent for building sustainably in Iowa and throughout the country.

Scott E. Olson, AIA, of Skogman Commercial in Cedar Rapids was elected to the City Council, District 4 of the City of Cedar Rapids.  The board works to determine policy for the governance of the city and implementation of that policy by the city manager and his staff. Olson was elected to his second 4 year term in November of 2015 and serves as the chair of the Infrastructure Committee.

Derek Powers, Assoc. AIA, of Martin Gardner Architecture in Marion serves as mentor of the ACE Mentor Program of America. The ACE Mentor Program of America helps mentor high school students and inspires them to pursue careers in design and construction.  Powers organizes and attends ACE meetings with his group of students, in partnership with another ACE mentor.  He leads group meetings acts as a resource for students to learn more about how to pursue education and careers in the fields of Architecture, Construction, and Engineering.

David Sorg, AIA, of OPN Architects, Inc. in Cedar Rapids serves as founder & board chair of the 100+ Men Who Care. Through the power of numbers, 100+ Men Who Care combines donations to make an immediate impact on its local community. Each member must commit to donating $100 per meeting ($400 per year), which is donated to a charity/non-profit/worthy cause serving the Cedar Rapids Metro Area. In under two hours, the group of 150 men in Cedar Rapids can almost double the yearly fundraising income of smaller organizations. Sorg is responsible for helping organize and facilitate the quarterly meetings, encouraging members to champion their choice nonprofits, and collecting donations from every member to pass on to the selected nonprofit. In addition to his role at 100+ Men Who Care, David is on the Board of Directors for Theatre Cedar Rapids, is Co-Chair of United Way Sinclair Society, is a class leader for Iowa BIG, is the past president of Metro North Rotary, is a Community Trustee Recipient and past board chair of the Leadership for Five Seasons, is a past member of the Innovation Council for the Economic Alliance, and volunteers his time as an assistant flag football coach for the YMCA.

Joseph Tursi, AIA, of OPN Architects in Cedar Rapids serves as Past- President of the American Institute of Architects, Iowa Chapter (AIA Iowa). AIA Iowa is the statewide component of the American Institute of Architects.  It serves as an advocate for the architecture profession and its member architects. President, Tursi led the organization in 2015.  He oversaw the day-to-day operations, ran the various meetings and helped guide the direction of the organization. He participated in a number of regional and national meetings/conferences, serving as the face of the statewide organization.  He participated in the advocacy efforts at the State Capitol in Des Moines and worked closely with AIA Iowa staff to advance the organization's initiatives.

Christopher Wand, AIA. of Primus Construction in Cedar Rapids serves as Board Member of the Czech Village/New Bohemia Main Street (CVNBMS), Dubuque Main Street (DMS), and Dubuque Museum of Art (DMA). Wand is the current president of CVNBMS. He has served on the board of DMS for 18 years and is a past president.  He has also served on the board of DMA for 12 years and is a past president.  Each organization strives to improve the quality of life in their respective communities and, in the case of the two Main Street Programs, with a focus on the built environment. As a board member, Wand serves in a leadership role and helps guide the direction of each organization. In addition to serving as Vice President for CVNBMS, he also serves as chair of the Organization Committee and chair of the committee for the group’s largest fundraising event.

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.

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

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