The Award-Winning Raymond Bowman

2016 has been an eventful year, for reasons I have been quiet about on the blog. The blog has actually been pretty quiet on the whole. Part of the reason for that is that I’ve been especially busy with my volunteer stuff, something that, as it turns out, hasn’t gone unnoticed. In the past few months I’ve been presented with two awards from the American Institute of Architects.


This is me holding/wearing them in the most architectural shirt and glasses that I have. Generously cropped out of the picture: pajama pants.

The first, back in November, was the AIA Pennsylvania Associate Award, which recognizes exceptional contributions to the profession as well as professional and civic leadership. Then, to my surprise, last week I was honored with the AIA Pittsburgh President’s Award, given at the discretion of the President of the Board of Directors to anyone in the local Pittsburgh membership. I’ve known a few of the past winners, and they do a nice thing where they personalize the text on the award. Mine recognizes my role in bringing a couple of mentorship programs to the Pittsburgh architecture community, and also my “thoughtful and collaborative spirit”.


So, I’m not great at accepting compliments, so my instinct is to downplay this. But the truth is it’s a big deal for me, and I’m tremendously honored even to have been considered for these. I haven’t yet gotten the chance to properly thank whoever it was who nominated me (anonymously, to date) for the Associate Award, or the people who participated in my mentorship programs and made them successful. I didn’t do any of this with the goal of winning awards, but it feels good to be recognized all the same. In fact, I’m going to start asking before I do anything now, “and what kinds of awards can I expect for doing this?” That is, if I don’t retire and go out on top. I haven’t decided yet.

If I don’t decide to hang it all up, I should be back with some new stuff in the next couple weeks, trying to finish out the year strong.


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