Looking for a streamlined approach to quantify and showcase the social, economic, and environmental values that are designed and built into your projects? Ahead of your submission to the inaugural AIA Pennsylvania Architectural Excellence COTE Awards, join us Wednesday, July 29 to chart a roadmap to assess the impact of your firm’s projects on the clients and communities they serve.

Vivian Loftness, FAIA, internationally renowned researcher, author and educator with over thirty years of focus on environmental design and sustainability, will introduce the Framework for Design Excellence measures and share her perspective as 2020 AIA National COTE Top 10 Juror.

Based on the AIA Framework for Design Excellence measures, this year’s complimentary, opt-in program and corresponding assessment tool was developed by AIA Pennsylvania COTE leaders. These leaders including AIA Pennsylvania COTE Chair, Brian Smiley, will provide a  dedicated review of the Architectural Excellence COTE Awards assessment tool to benchmark your project’s performance.

Learning objectives:

    • Understand the ten “Framework for Design Excellence” measures.
    • Explore how the measures are most commonly evaluated for insight into compilation of your project’s narrative.
    • Explain how AIA Pennsylvania is introducing and integrating the “Framework for Design Excellence” into the Architectural Excellence Awards program.
    • Demonstrate the use of the spreadsheet assessment tool and key performance metrics collected for 2020 AIA Pennsylvania Architectural Excellence COTE Awards.

This course has been approved for 1 AIA LU | HSW

Register to Access the On-Demand Recording

Special Thanks to Our Sponsor Continuus Materials

Meet the Panelists



Vivian Loftness, FAIA LEED AP
Paul Mellon Chair in Architecture, University Professor  – Carnegie Mellon University

Vivian Loftness, FAIA, is university professor and Paul Mellon chair at Carnegie Mellon University, serving a decade as head of the School of Architecture. With over 30 years of industry and government funding, she is a key member of Carnegie Mellon’s leadership in sustainability research and education, the author of eight book chapters, and editor of the Springer Reference Encyclopedia Sustainable Built Environments. She has served on the board of directors for the National Academies’ Board on Infrastructure and the Constructed Environment, the U.S. Green Building Council, AIACOTE, Phipps Conservatory, WELL Living Lab, and the International Living Future Institute. Vivian is a LEED fellow, NIBS fellow, senior fellow of the Design Futures Council, and one of the UK Building Research Establishment’s 13 Stars of Building Science.



Brian Smiley, AIA, CDT, LEED BD+C
Chair of the AIA Pennsylvania COTE

Brian is an Associate, Senior Project Architect and Director of Sustainability at HOK Philadelphia with over 28 years’ experience leading teams in the development of award winning projects in a wide variety of building types including science & technology, higher education, and corporate facilities.  Brian has extensive experience with high-performance envelopes and has been engaged on numerous projects with comprehensive factory and field performance testing.  He is familiar with a wide range of envelope analysis software and fluent with the criteria that defines high performance design.   He is a frequent visiting critic at major universities, and lecturer at conferences and green building organizations.

He is a recognized sustainability leader throughout the state and is the current Chair for the Committee on the Environment for AIA Pennsylvania, Director of Sustainability for AIA Philadelphia, and Chair for the Philadelphia COTE Policy and Advocacy Subcommittee.



Jonathan Weiss, AIA, LEED Fellow, WELL AP, Fitwel
Member AIA Pennsylvania COTE / Design Awards Taskforce

Jonathan Weiss has been a member of the Committee on the Environment for many years, serving as co-chair of the Philadelphia chapter from 1997 through 2004.  Along with Sherman and Brian, he has led the effort to integrate sustainability requirements into the design awards in line with COTE National’s effort.  He is an architect and a Director of Sustainability in Jacobs Buildings group, with a practice focusing on corporate commercial, research laboratory and mission critical project types.  He is an AIA member and a LEED Fellow.




Sherman C. Aronson, AIA, LEED AP BD+C
Member AIA Pennsylvania COTE / Design Awards Taskforce

Sherman Aronson has over 40 years of experience in architecture, preservation and sustainable design.  His project management expertise has focused on transit and rail projects for SEPTA and Amtrak; historic preservation and adaptive reuse of landmark buildings, new office construction, and the renovation of academic facilities for higher education institutions.

As a Senior Associate, Sherman leads the Green Design Committee within BLT Architects, an associate-led Green Design Review Committee that reviews each project opportunity, champions the firm’s sustainable efforts, and conducts milestone reviews for best practices.  He has managed the green design of a dozen projects with a combined area of more than 6 million square feet and a total construction value of over $4 billion.  In addition, he leads the internal BLTa Quality Assurance Review efforts, working with each design team to achieve and maintain documentation that works for each project and client.

Register to Access the On-Demand Recording

This on-demand course has been approved for 1 LU | HSW.