Saturday, Oct. 21
Hilton Garden Inn, Penhallow Conference Area
8am - 3pm

A Resilient New England 

On Saturday morning we will be offering a series of presentations by designers, thought and industry leaders as we explore issues of designing for Resilience in our region.   We will question what Resilience means:   How do we foster a resilient community?  How do we best acknowledge our complicated cultural history and use the built environment as a tool for memory and education?  What are some of the tools and resources being developed through AIA National that we can apply here in New England?  How can we leverage our knowledge of building science to support not only energy-efficiency but public safety and well-being, and better prepare us for a changing climate?  How is Boston, one of the international 100 Resilient Cities, planning to respond to its specific challenges?

Our guests will present these topics and more during our concurrent morning sessions, and come together for a panel discussion after lunch moderated by Emily Grandstaff-Rice, FAIA.

Session 1A:  A just and regenerative approach to resilience

9:15-10:30 am, Penhallow Conference A

Explore with your peers the many layers of resilience, with the understanding that in these times we need not only to ‘bounce back’ after crises, but also further evolve how we engage with our work, ourselves, each other, and our world. Learn how regenerative design, climate justice, and complementary frameworks can empower us, as architects and change agents, to reframe times of radical disruption as opportunities, not just to survive but to enhance our capacity to thrive.  

Jennifer Atlee, Principal of AtleeResearch

Jennifer is most energized by working with others to make systems changes so our everyday choices consistently lead to a just and thriving world. For over a decade, Jennifer’s professional focus has been increasing the capacity of the green building industry to evaluate and improve the sustainability of building products. Her volunteer endeavors weave together resilience, living economy, wise democracy, and climate justice efforts. Jennifer has a dual M.S. from MIT in Material Science & Engineering and Technology Policy.

Session 1B:  Resilient to what? Adapting practice to meet resilience goals 

9:15-10:30 am, Penhallow Conference B

Hazards, climate change, population growth, and the degradation of natural resources are increasingly impacting the built environment. What do architects need to know to design differently to mitigate the negative impacts? This session will discuss the acute shocks and chronic stresses that hinder resilience, share new tools and resources, and describe how to integrate hazard mitigation and climate adaptation into your practice. 

Lindsay Brugger, AIA

Lindsay manages the American Institute of Architect’s Disaster Assistance and Resilience and Adaptation programs; focusing on education, resource development, and policy related to hazard mitigation, climate adaptation and community resilience. Lindsay is an avid partner in advancing resilience action throughout the building industry. She currently serves as the Coordinating Committee Secretary for National Institute of Science and Technology’s cross sector Community Resilience Panel and co-founded Open Architecture DC’s Resilience by Design program.

Session 2A:  Resilient Design: Speeding the Transition to Sustainability

10:45 am-12:00 pm, Penhallow Conference A

Resilient design is about creating buildings and communities that are able to bounce back from disturbances and interruptions and that are better prepared for a changing climate. The motivation for resilient design is safety and well-being, but many of the strategies are identical to those that the green building community has been advancing for decades. In this presentation, Alex Wilson will describe his evolution from the world of green building, as the founder of BuildingGreen, Inc. and editor of Environmental Building News, to his current focus on resilient design. He will explain how resilience can be a motivation to speed the adoption of green building and why this is so important today with our rapidly changing climate. Specific strategies for enhancing resilience will be presented through case studies.

Alex Wilson, President, Resilient Design Institute

Alex Wilson is president of the Resilient Design Institute, a nonprofit organization working to advance the adoption of resilient design into buildings and communities. He is also founder (in 1985) of the Brattleboro, Vermont company BuildingGreen, which has long been a leader in green building consulting and information delivery. Alex is a widely published writer on green building, energy, and the environment, and he is the author or coauthor of several books, including Your Green Home (New Society Publishing, 2006), The Consumer Guide to Home Energy Savings (American Council for an Energy Efficient Economy, now in its 10th edition, 2013), and Green Development: Integrating Ecology and Real Estate (John Wiley, 1998).

Alex served on the national board of the U.S. Green Building Council from 2000 – 2005, and in 2008 he received the organization’s Leadership Award for Education; in 2010 he received the second annual Hanley Award for Vision and Leadership in Sustainability.

Session 2B: Resilient Boston: An Equitable and Connected City

10:45 am-12:00 pm, Penhallow Conference B

Boston’s Chief Resilience Officer, Dr. Atyia Martin, will present an update on the recently released Resilient Boston: An Equitable and Connected City, which outlines visions and goals, built upon a racial equity framework, to achieve a more resilient Boston.  They are:

  • Reflective City, Stronger People
  • Collaborative, Proactive Governance
  • Equitable Economic Opportunity
  • Connected, Adaptive City

City of Boston staff and Dr. Atyia Martin have worked for nearly two years with more than 11,000 Bostonians to develop this comprehensive strategy. The ambitious strategy reflects a cross-collaborative, non-traditional and inclusive approach to developing solutions. Resilient Boston breaks down silos, uses data to inform decision-making, ensures that programs and policies are developed using a racial equity lens, and is an important pillar of Imagine Boston 2030, the first citywide plan in 50 years.

Dr. S. Atyia Martin, Chief Resilience Officer, Office of Mayor Martin J. Walsh, City of Boston, Massachusetts

Dr. Atyia Martin is a Certified Emergency Manager (CEM) with a diverse set of experiences in public health, emergency management, intelligence, and homeland security. Mayor Martin J. Walsh appointed her as the Chief Resilience Officer for the City of Boston as part of the 100 Resilient Cities initiative pioneered by the Rockefeller Foundation. In this role, she is responsible for leading the development and implementation of Boston’s Resilience Strategy. Boston will focus on advancing racial equity as the foundation of the Resilience Strategy process to increase our shared ability to thrive after emergencies.

Dr. Martin has served as adjunct faculty in the Master of Homeland Security at Northeastern University. She was previously the Director of the Office of Public Health Preparedness at the Boston Public Health Commission (BPHC). Her previous professional experience includes the Boston Police Department’s Boston Regional Intelligence Center; City of Boston’s Mayor’s Office of Emergency Management; the Federal Bureau of Investigations (FBI); and active duty Air Force assigned to the National Security Agency. Dr. Martin and her husband were born and raised in Boston where they currently live. They have five children.

Panel Discussion:  Perspectives on Resilience

1-2:30 pm, Penhallow Conference AB

This panel will be comprised of the four speakers from the morning sessions who will come together to discuss their work in the field of resilience from their own varied perspectives.  The discussion will be moderated by Emily Grandstaff-Rice, FAIA, who was recently elected to the AIA National Board of Directors; her term begins in 2018.


Emily Grandstaff-Rice FAIA

Emily is an architect with 16 years of experience on a broad range of academic, hospitality, institutional, and commercial projects. Her leadership includes serving as 2014 president of the Boston Society of Architects and chairing the AIA Equity in Architecture Commission in 2016. Emily’s innovative design work reinforces that a building is more than its shell; it is an experience. As a frequent speaker and writer on the future of architectural practice, Emily is fascinated by how technology, the social economy, and environmental urgency are addressed in Arrowstreet’s practice.

Session One: 
Speaker(s) bios and headshotSession One: TopSpeaker(s) bios and headshots



Tour One:  Bridges of Portsmouth

Bridges of Portsmouth is a guided tour of two of the three bridges that connect Portsmouth, New Hampshire to Kittery, Maine.  Both the Memorial Bridge and the Sarah Long Bridge are center span lift bridges that have been recently constructed to replace predecessors that succumbed to corrosion.   Walking tours of the bridges will explore unique design and engineering elements with lead project team members.


Tour Two:  Portsmouth Above and Below

A tour of noteworthy but hard-to-find spaces. Using necessity as the mother of invention, combined with a good dose of Yankee ingenuity, Portsmouth's forefathers stretched the limits of their available technologies to create innovative and beautiful new building forms and systems.   With special access to ancillary spaces, we will explore the unique design and construction techniques use throughout Portsmouth history of various towers, steeples, attics, cupolas, caverns, tombs, and tunnels. 

Tour Three:  Portsmouth Naval Shipyard

The Shipyard is a site of national significance:  It is the oldest working shipyard in the country and one of only four naval shipyards still serving the United States Navy.  Portsmouth Naval Shipyard has a venerable heritage and rich tradition. For more than 200 years Yankee ingenuity and facilities planning have been the keys to the Shipyard’s success. Like a small city, the buildings and structures are organized to support a vast array of activities from industrial operations to housing.  We will discuss the master planning and resiliency characteristics that have molded the shipyard and its buildings from a facility that once built sailing warships to one today responsible for the overhaul, repair and modernization of the Navy’s most sophisticated warfare platform -- the nuclear-powered submarine.  In addition, we will tour the shipyard for a first-hand view of an evolving infrastructure that has supported a maturing mission from “Sails to Atoms.”


Tour Four:  Helicopter Tour of Portsmouth  (by raffle entry only)

Enjoy this unique bird's-eye view above historic Portsmouth, bridges across the Piscataqua River, naval shipyard, coastline, lighthouses and more. You and a lucky friend will have a 15 minute tour offered by Seacoast Helicopters. Winner will receive a gift certificate and must contact Seacoast Helicopters to schedule flight. Winner notified Oct. 13. Raffle proceeds will go to the NH Architecture Foundation to assist with scholarships.