Valarie Franklin, AIA, NCARB

Submitted by ChristianTaylor on Thu, 11/19/2020 - 18:00
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{"version":"0.3.0","atoms":[],"cards":[],"markups":[],"sections":[[1,"p",[[0,[],0,"Nashville, Tenn., is one of the fastest-growing metro\nareas in the United States. Citizen Architect Valarie Franklin has used her\nknowledge to help shape Music City\u2019s growth by envisioning spaces that appeal\nto the diverse communities they serve and that contribute to the culture and\nvitality of one of America\u2019s most storied towns. Franklin is especially\npassionate about lending her voice to help solve problems that impact\nunderserved and underrepresented citizens who have seen their neighborhoods\nchange rapidly."]]]]}
{"version":"0.3.0","atoms":[],"cards":[],"markups":[["em"]],"sections":[[1,"p",[[0,[0],1,"A Nashville, Tenn., native, Franklin has worked with\naward-winning architecture firms in Tennessee, Texas, Oklahoma, and Alabama for\nmore than 20 years. She currently is senior associate\/client relationship\nmanager at Moody Nolan, and until earlier this year was a project\narchitect\/associate at Gresham Smith. Franklin currently is the Nashville\nChapter president of the National Organization of Minority Architects and\npresident of the Tennessee Architects\u2019 Political Action Committee. She sits on\nthe board of directors of AIA Tennessee and Nashville\u2019s Civic Design Center,\nand is a member of Nashville\u2019s Metropolitan Development and Housing Agency\nDesign Review Board as well as the Board of Plumbing Examiners and Appeals. In\naddition to her project design and advocacy efforts, Franklin developed a love\nfor educating and mentoring as an adjunct professor at ITT Technical Institute,\nwhere she taught drafting and design courses for several years. "]]],[1,"p",[[0,[],0,"Martin Luther King Jr. spoke many times in Valarie\nFranklin\u2019s hometown of Nashville, Tenn., but it is remarks he made in\nWashington, D.C., that guide Franklin\u2019s work as a Citizen Architect. In his\n1959 speech to students, Dr. King said, \u201cWhatever career you may choose \u2026 let\nme propose an avocation to be pursued along with it. Become a dedicated fighter\nfor civil rights. Make it a central part of your life.\u201d "]]],[1,"p",[[0,[],0,"Franklin remembers reading those words while doing work\nfor the United Way, and she understood the challenges contained within them: No\nmatter one\u2019s chosen profession, you must advocate for a better world for all\nhumans. "]]],[1,"p",[[0,[],0,"This devotion is especially important in a rapidly\nchanging city like Nashville. Franklin grew up in the city, and most of her\nfamily still resides there. She said that when large-scale development started\nhappening in her parents\u2019 neighborhood, she embraced the modernization but,\nbecause of her father, she also understood the complications and loss of\ncommunity that can accompany growth. \u201cHe told me he couldn\u2019t even simply ask\nhis neighbors for a cup of sugar anymore,\u201d Franklin said. "]]],[1,"p",[[0,[],0,"Franklin is actively guiding Nashville\u2019s growth through\nher position as a member of the city\u2019s Metropolitan Development and Housing\nAgency (MDHA) Design Review Committee. This eight-person panel examines plans\nfor new construction and renovation in redevelopment districts, and aims to\nfulfill the MDHA\u2019s mission to strategically reverse disinvestment and blight,\nand promote redevelopment that is sustainable from economic, environmental, aesthetic,\npublic safety, and historic preservationist perspectives. "]]],[1,"blockquote",[[0,[],0,"\u201cThe people in our communities are looking for advocates\nthat have the power to influence policies that affect their prosperity and\nlivelihood,\u201d said Franklin. \u201cI\u2019m committed to being that advocate, that\nrepresentation, that inspiration. It is my way of giving back.\u201d"]]],[1,"p",[[0,[],0,"One day, Franklin and her Design Review Committee\ncolleagues might be examining how a new or renovated single-family home will\nalter a neighborhood\u2019s landscape. The next, they might be determining the\nimpact a large-scale commercial development will have on Nashville\u2019s culture\nand economy. "]]],[1,"p",[[0,[],0,"Given Nashville\u2019s enormous growth, design industry voices\nare especially important. \u201cArchitects can be among the most effective voices for\nequitable development,\u201d Franklin said. \u201cAlong with engagement with the\ncommunity, architects have the creativity to develop ideas with impact. If we\nkeep in mind that we are designing not only a building but an experience, we\ncan understand the impact our voices can have.\u201d "]]],[1,"p",[[0,[],0,"Franklin also sits on the Board of Plumbing Examiners and\nAppeals, which hears all appeals for new and renovation projects. How do pipes\nand drains fit with her work as a Citizen Architect? Franklin explained:\n\u201cService to this board is important because we ensure projects and artisans are\ncommitted to safety, and comply with the spirit of the building code and\nAmericans with Disabilities Act [ADA].\u201d "]]],[1,"p",[[0,[],0,"At the center of all Franklin\u2019s work is giving voice to\nunderserved and underrepresented individuals. She founded and now leads the\nNashville chapter of the National Organization of Minority Architects\n(NOMAnash), a national organization founded in 1971 to inspire minority youth\nand promote access to quality design to all people regardless of race. "]]],[1,"p",[[0,[],0,"NOMAnash received its charter in 2018. Among its chief\ngoals is revealing to minority youth the possibility of a career in\narchitecture. As part of this effort, Franklin and her NOMAnash team created\nThe Coloring Book of Architecture that promotes architecture. The book is\navailable on Amazon, and Metro-Nashville Public Schools features it in its\nMakerspace libraries. Franklin hopes the book will inspire a love of\narchitecture in children and even expose them to the idea that they can change\ntheir neighborhoods, or even world, through design. "]]],[1,"p",[[0,[],0,"Franklin has received several awards for her work. In\n2019, for example, Gresham Smith awarded Franklin its annual Community Impact\nAward. In a tribute to Franklin\u2019s efforts as a Citizen Architect, NOMAnash\nParliamentarian Derek Howard, AIA, said Franklin \u201cis an advocate for others.\u201d\nColleague Patrick Gilbert, AIA, said Franklin is \u201cout there in the community,\nlooking at and touching people and bringing them up collectively.\u201d "]]],[1,"p",[[0,[],0,"Along with advocating for Nashville residents, Franklin\nadvocates for her industry. As president of the Tennessee Architects\u2019 Political\nAction Committee, she recently helped remove language from legislation that\nwould have forced Tennessee architects to register as lobbyists and barred\nlobbyists\u2014including architects\u2014from serving on city boards and commissions. "]]],[1,"p",[[0,[],0,"\u201cThis legislation would have kept architects from the\ncritical roles we play within the city,\u201d explained Franklin. \u201cFortunately, by\nengaging with the bill\u2019s sponsor and educating her about how architects guide\ndevelopment, we were able to get the bill changed.\u201d"]]],[1,"p",[[0,[],0,"Franklin hopes future generations of architects will\ncontinue to serve on boards and commissions, including planning, zoning,\nhistoric, codes, and design review panels. For her, it is still very much part\nof fulfilling Dr. King\u2019s vision. "]]],[1,"blockquote",[[0,[],0,"\u201cThe buildings we design are not for us\u2014they are designed\nto impact the communities in which they reside after we are long gone,\u201d\nFranklin said, \u201cI encourage professionals in the industry to be involved in the\ncommunities where they design. If you are able to sacrifice just a little of\nyour time, it can make a huge impact in the life of others and possibly\ngenerations after them.\u201d"]]]]}
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{"version":"0.3.0","atoms":[],"cards":[],"markups":[["a",["href","https:\/\/\/r\/8DD8GG6","target","_new"]]],"sections":[[1,"h2",[[0,[],0,"Nominate a Citizen Architect"]]],[1,"p",[[0,[],0,"Do you know an AIA member that brings their insights, talents, training, and experience to make positive contributions to their community through engaging in the administrative and legislative political process?"]]],[1,"p",[[0,[0],1,"Nominate a Citizen Architect \u003E"]]]]}
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Citizen Architect - Valarie Franklin, AIA, NCARB
Citizen Architect Valarie Franklin has used her knowledge to help shape Music City’s growth by envisioning spaces that appeal to the diverse communities they serve and that contribute to the culture and vitality of one of America’s most storied towns.
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Valarie Franklin, AIA, NCARB
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