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Sustainable Dialogues III: Disaster, Reconstruction, and Design.
A Public Symposium on Disaster Relief, Urban Renewal, and Sustainability.
June 28, 2008 at A+D Architecture and Design Museum, 5900 Wilshire Blvd., Los Angeles

  Raisa Banfield, architect and environmental activist, is the Executive Director of the Environmental Advocacy Center in Panama. She received her Bachelor of Architecture at the University of Panama and postgraduate degree in Business Administration from the Centre for Advanced Studies of the Association of Panamanian Executive Business, Panama. She is a member of the Panamanian Society of Engineers and Architects, as well as a member and founder of various groups of environmental activists in Panama, namely: Neighborhood Associations and Residents of Clayton (former U.S. base), Committee Pro Defense Urban Forest and National Park Road Crossings Alliance Pro-City. She hosts the weekly television program: Caring Planet 3, which covers various environmental issues. In addition, she writes and lectures extensively on the impact of urban development on the environment.


Matthew Berman is a principal designer and co-founder of workshop/apd, a design firm focusing on sustainable buildings. In 2006, Matthew and his business partner Andrew Kotchen won the Sustainable Design Competition for New Orleans, sponsored by Brad Pitt and Global Green USA. Subsequently, they have been invited to speak around the world about their unique take on rebuilding New Orleans with ‘green’ architecture and their revolutionary approach to bringing ecologically sound design to low-cost housing. Berman is a Visiting Professor at the Pratt Institute. He received a Bachelor of Arts from Lehigh University and a Master’s of Architecture from Columbia University. He is the editor, with Bernard Tschumi, of Index Architecture (2003). In addition, Matthew hosts Gallery HD’s television show called What the Window Washer Saw, a weekly series about the world’s most iconic skyscrapers.

Matt will be speaking about the Global Green winning competition that is currently under construction in New Orleans Lower 9th Ward.


Jeffrey B. Causey received his bachelor’s degree in Architecture from the University of Notre Dame in 1977.  His year abroad study in Rome, Italy opened doors to extensive foreign and international work through his 30 year career. As director of Japan operations Jeff lived and worked in the Pacific Rim for 8 years with completed designs and construction in Japan, China, Korea, Malaysia and Singapore. He has been a winning team member on multiple international design competitions such as the New Shanghai International Plaza and has lectured throughout Japan in conjunction with the U.S. Embassy. His recent work features designs of “Eco Smart” communities in Southern California and is highlighted by Victor Valley Community Colleges masterplan which features solar, wind and geothermal systems as well as public/private educational partnerships. He is presently the Managing Director of Western operations and Director of Architecture at Cooper Carry - Newport Beach, California.


Andrew Curtis, Ph.D., Department of Geography at the University of Southern California and former Director of the World Health Organization’s Collaborating Center for Remote Sensing and GIS for Public Health at Louisiana State University. His research interests include the geography of health, with a particular emphasis on spatial analysis and geospatial technology. In 2005 after the landfall of Hurricane Katrina, he and his WHOCC lab were part of an LSU team providing geospatial support for search and rescue operations in the Louisiana Emergency Operation Center. He continues to work on various Katrina related recovery projects, including developing new geospatial approaches to capture post-disaster data.


James Dart, AIA, is principal of dArchitects, New York.  He participated in a HUD-funded community-based planning for New Orleans East in partnership with the Pratt Institute and ACORN Housing Corp.  With Deborah Gans, he placed third in ‘High Density on the Higher Ground’ competition for post-Katrina New Orleans.  Dart has taught at the University of Pennsylvania and Drexel University, in Philadelphia.  He is currently University Lecturer and Siena Studio director at the New Jersey School of Architecture at NJIT, in Newark. His firm and Gansstudio are architects for affordable housing for the Lower Ninth Ward and New Orleans East.


Eduardo Tejeira Davis received his degree in architecture at the Technical University of Darmstadt, Germany and his PhD in art history at the University of Heidelberg, Germany, where he specialized in the history of European and Latin American architecture from the eighteenth century onwards. He has served as a consultant to UNESCO in Panama and Belize and an advisor to several Panamanian government agencies and foundations. He is a Professor of Architectural History at the University of Panama and has served as a Visiting Professor at several Spanish and U.S. universities, including Madrid, Seville, Granada, University of Arizona and Tulane University. He is the chairman of the DOCOMOMO Panama working party. He has published in Europe and Latin America; his most recent book is Panama: Architecture and Landscape Guide (Seville, 2007).


Alejandra Lillo is a principal at GRAFT, a design firm based in Los Angeles, Berlin and Beijing. She is one of the main designers responsible for the "Pink Project" in New Orleans, a key effort by the Make It Right initiative, which focuses attention on the plight of the Lower 9th Ward. She received her bachelor from the University of Mendoza, Argentina and her master's degree from University of California, Los Angeles.


Kimberli Meyer is both an architect and artist by training, and has been the director of the MAK Center for Art and Architecture, Los Angeles at the Schindler House since 2002. Selected curatorial projects at the Schindler House include The Gen(H)ome Project (2006) with Open Source Architecture; Symmetry (2006) with Nizan Shaked; and Showdown (2004) with Fritz Haeg. Ms. Meyer is the commissioner for the US presentation at the Cairo International Biennial in 2008, and spearheaded the MAK Center’s new Urban Future Initiative, a fellowship that brings international researchers to Los Angeles to focus on urban issues.


Mark Miller, AIA, is the innovator behind award-winning Project FROG™.  Project FROG designs, manufactures and sells high-performance, affordable, and quick-to-deploy green building systems. He is also the founding principal and CEO of MKThink, a premier research-based architecture firm in San Francisco. Having worked with leading international corporations, financial institutions, and education institutions, Miller offers a deep understanding of the intimate relationship between human behavior and architecture complemented by his profound commitment to sustainability. With graduate degrees from Haverford College and as a Keasbey Fellow at Cambridge University, Miller received training and exposure to architecture and building around the world.


Raymond Vail Nicholson, Architectural and Engineering. Consultant CSI CDT
Ray Nicholson began his career with PPG in Salt Lake City in 1974, and with one interruption in service, has worked in various capacities in dealer sales, home center sales in Atlanta, Georgia; marketing for PPG Baltimore Brush and is currently an “Architectural Representative,” calling on architectural firms on the west coast including several western states, Hawaii  and Alaska. In this capacity he was part of the original “A&E” team established by PPG in 1998.
    This team is now called the Construction Market Team and individuals in this group must be equally competent to present products manufactured by PPG Industries in High Performance Glass Products; “Kynar” finishes; Powder Coatings and High Performance finishes for the architectural community. He currently resides in Vancouver, Washington with his wife of 38 years, Stephanie Nicholson. He as three grown children none of which have moved home yet..”Hope Springs Eternal.”


Clifford A. Pearson, deputy editor of Architectural Record, has written on topics ranging from the Phaeno Science Center by Zaha Hadid to the Hong Kong International Airport by Foster & Partners, as well as essays on school design and housing. From 1993 to 1997, he edited Record's annual section on architecture in the Pacific Rim and is currently in charge of the magazine’s Chinese edition and annual Design Vanguard issue. He is the author of Indonesia: Design and Culture and editor of Modern American Houses. In 2003, he received a Media Fellowship from the U.S.-Japan Foundation to research “Technology and Tradition in Contemporary Japanese Architecture.” Pearson holds a master's degree in architectural history, Columbia University, and a bachelor's degree in urban studies, Cornell University.

  Patama Roonrakwit is an architect, lecturer and community activist. She is a graduate of the Faculty of Architecture, Silpakorn University (1991), and received a master degree in Development practices from School of Architecture, Oxford Brookes University, UK (1996). She is the founder of Community Architects for Shelter and Environment (CASE) that has been involved in numerous community development projects for the last 10 years. She was a recipient of the award ‘Young Architect with Outstanding Work’ from the Association of Siamese Architects (ASA). In addition to practicing she is also a visiting lecturer at several universities in Thailand. She is currently a global tutor for the Centre for Development and Emergency Planning, Department of Architecture, School of Built Environment, Oxford Brookes University, UK.

Manuel Trute, architect and urban planner, specializes in urban legislation and the development of planning instruments for sensitive urban areas in Panamanian cities. He was one of the main promoters to ensure the development of public space along the waterfront of Panama City. He is project director of the Urban and Environmental Feasibility Study for the Southern Sector of Juan Díaz, an environmentally sensitive area of Panama City currently under pressure from the real estate market. Trute, professor in urban planning in two universities in Panama, received a degree from the School of Architecture and Urban Planning in the University of Sao Paulo, Brazil, and a post graduate diploma in Population and Sustainable Development in the Cairo Demographic Center, Egypt.


Alvaro Uribe is an architect and partner in the firm URBIO, S. A.  He received his degree in architecture from the University of Panama and a master’s degree in urban planning from the Institute of Urbanism of Paris at the University of Paris. He received a postgraduate diploma in Geographical Information Systems at the Institute of Housing and Urban Development Studies in Rotterdam. He has served as a consultant for the World Bank, Robert Nathan & Associates, Wallace, Roberts & Todd, and Dames & Moore. He is currently an Assistant Professor in the School of Architecture at the University of Panama, researcher for Panama’s Center of Latin American Studies (CELA), International Center for Sustainable Development (CIDES) and Lincoln Institute of Land Policy in Cambridge.

  Walker Wells , is an urban planner and Director of the Resource Efficiency and Sustainable Communities Program for Global Green USA, a national non-profit organization headquartered in Santa Monica. He works with affordable housing developers, municipalities, and school districts across the U.S. to further green building and sustainable development practices by providing technical assistance, conducting charrettes and workshops, and developing public policy. He is an editor and a co-author of Blueprint for Greening Affordable Housing (2007)and Creating Successful Green Building Programs (2006). He received his Bachelor’s degrees in Sociology and Environmental Studies from the University of California Santa Barbara and a Master’s of City and Regional from the California Polytechnic University San Luis Obispo.


Johannes Widodo, Assoc. Prof., is an architect and Director of CASA (Centre for Advanced Studies in Architecture) and executive editor of JSEAA (Journal of Southeast Asian Architecture) at the National University of Singapore.His area of specialization includes urban history and morphology of Southeast Asian cities, Asian modernity, and heritage conservation. His Ph.D. in Architecture is from the University of Tokyo, Japan (1996), Master of Architectural Engineering degree is from KU-Leuven, Belgium (1998), and his professional degree in Architectural Engineering (Ir.) is from Parahyangan Catholic University in Bandung, Indonesia (1984). He is a member of mAAN (modern Asian Architecture Network), iFoU (International Forum on Urbanism), and UNESCO-ICCROM Asian Academy for Heritage Management.


anthony fontenot  

Anthony Fontenot,an architect and Ph.D. candidate at Princeton University School of Architecture, has worked with Frank O. Gehry and Associates and OMA/Rem Koolhaas. From 2000 to 2005 he taught design studios and architectural theory at Tulane University School of Architecture. His publications on contemporary architecture and urbanism include: “Planned Destruction: Modern Planning, War, and Public Housing” in Shrinking Cities Volume 2: Handlungskonzepte and “Studie” co-authored with Philipp Oswalt in Berlin: Stadt Ohne Form. In preparation for a forthcoming book on Kabul, he and Ajmal Maiwandi have co-authored many publications, including: “Capital of Chaos: The New Kabul of Warlords and Infidels” in Evil Paradises: Dreamworlds of Neoliberalism, “Who Builds in Kabul Anyway?” in Kabul/Teheran 1979ff, “Rebuilding Kabul” in City Edges – Contemporary Discourses on Urbanism, and “Waiting for Kabul” in At War With The City.

christian ditlev bruun   Christian Ditlev Bruun, an architect and film maker. Curated the U.S. Pavilion at The Venice Biennale in 2004 and in 2006; After the Flood which traveled to Thailand and Panama and opened at A+D Museum in Los Angeles in April 2008. He is making a documentary on digital architecture and future 3D technology funded by the Danish government. As well as curating, lecturing, and working around the world, Christian is regularly a visiting critic at Columbia University, Princeton University, and S.C.I.-Arc on topics of film, media, architecture, and technology. He studied 2 years at SCI-Arc and recevied his bachelor and masters degree from Aarhus School of Architecture, Denmark.

As creative principal and owner of DitlevFilms Christian produces feature films, directs national commercial campaigns, and produces digital media across most entertainment platforms.

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