In Support of Application to Fellow Status in Object 5: Service to Society

Design should have value for everyone. Duo Dickinson has made his mission as an architect to reveal that value from pro bono to high-end designs, and in writing, media, community service and professional activism.

1. Design in Practice
Dickinson’s built legacy reflects the objective value of a design practice that has been based on cultural relevance and social usefulness. Over 500 built commissions (an 80% build rate) were executed at every price point and in over 20 markets. His designs have received 20 state/AIA Chapter awards, 16 national design awards, and have been featured in over 100 publications.

2. Design in the Public Eye and Ear
Beyond buildings, Dickinson has spent his entire professional life communicating the potentials and realities of the design and building process to everyone – inspiring homeowners and not for profits as well as engaging thousands of architects in his writings, speaking and media work.
Dickinson has been a professional writer on architecture in the popular press for 33 years - including the work of over 100 architects, predominantly about residential design. His 8 books total over 150,000 copies in print. He has worked as a features writer for over 20 national magazines and websites. Dickinson created “Saved By Design” 5 years ago, a blog that has received over 100,000 visits. Duo is currently the architecture critic for the New Haven Register, a feature writer for the Hartford Courant magazine group and on the Common/Edge Collaborative blog. His 9th book, “A Home Called New England” will be published in 2017 by Globe/Pequot. 
Demystifying design for everyone has meant a continuous radio presence currently hosting several shows and podcasts. He has been featured on NPR’s Studio 360, Weekend Marketplace and On Point, and on Tablet’s UnOrthodox podcast, and he is the “Design Czar” for the New Haven Independent – as well as being featured in a CNN web series and on the Financial News Network.

3. Design in Service
Dickinson’s pro bono work is the highest and best use of his “design for everyone” ethic, involving 30% of his life’s work product totaling 200 efforts with 150+ built results for over 70 organizations. In that same mission of having design reach into the rest of our culture, Dickinson has served as a board member for 20 arts, religious and civic organizations.
 Dickinson has also helped to reform the practice of architecture, by co-founding the Congress of Residential Architecture (CORA) that produced a Position Paper presented by him to the 2009 AIA National Convention.
 Talking his walk of design for everyone, Dickinson has spoken on design to well over 100 groups, including over 30 AIA venues, from local chapters to Grassroots and AIA National, as well as to universities including Cornell, Berkeley and Harvard. He has sat on over 30 design juries: AIA, editorial and institutional. Additionally, Dickinson has taught at Roger Williams College and at Yale.

In Summary
“Design for Everyone” is not a feel-good bromide – it’s virtually a necessity for 21st century living, a time of great change – change that can either be thoughtful or reactionary. Unless it’s for everyone, architecture will be an unsustainable profession, a fate Dickinson has fought against his entire career - benefiting hundreds of clients and millions of readers, viewers and listeners.

FAIA - Application

Duo Dickinson