AIA Northern Virginia Recognize Holt, Hollander


Henry Hollander (left) and Jaan Holt at the Washington-Alexandria Architecture Center. Photo courtesy VT News.

Jaan Holt, director of the Virginia Tech College of Architecture and Urban Studies’ Washington-Alexandria Architecture Center and Patrick and Nancy Lathrop Professor of Architecture, and Henry Hollander, coordinator of outreach and alumni relations for the center, received the AIA  Northern Virginia Chapter Award at the chapter’s annual meeting October 8.

The award is presented in recognition of an individual or organization that has significantly inspired or influenced the architecture profession in Northern Virginia over a sustained period of time through their professional activities and body of work.

Northern Virginia Chapter Board Member Karen M. Conkey, AIA—a former student of Holt’s—introduced him: “As the director of the urban extension of Virginia Tech’s architecture program since its inception 33 years ago, and later the consortium of architecture schools from around the world, Jaan has inspired countless students and had a lasting impact on a generation of professionals. Through his influence, Jaan has done more to change the face of architecture in the Washington area than any single architect ever could.”

Of Hollander, she said: “Henry wears many hats professionally … he is indispensable to our chapter and the professionals it serves. Be it hosting the chapter’s annual Architecture in Schools event where 150-plus elementary school students and their parents are invited to visit the Washington-Alexandria Architecture Center’s facilities, or hosting larger chapter events—sometimes at a moment’s notice—Henry has always been there eager to help facilitate. He has worked diligently assisting students and recent graduates in finding those coveted first jobs and internships and provides a valuable resource to our professional community.”

Both Hollander and Holt have a long history with the College of Architecture and Urban Studies at Virginia Tech. Hollander earned both his bachelor’s degree and master’s degree in architecture there. Over the years he has designed, managed, and produced international, national, local, and student design competitions and exhibits on behalf of Virginia Tech and the Washington-Alexandria Architecture Center.

Jaan Holt, who holds a BArch from Virginia Tech and a MArch from the University of Pennsylvania, was one of the faculty members involved in establishing the Washington-Alexandria Architecture Center in 1980. Today, the Old Town Alexandria campus and the programs offered there continue to expand, and the center not only serves Virginia Tech students, but also hosts consortium students from participating institutions around the world.

“The Washington-Alexandria Architecture Center is a unique pedagogical model of collaboration between national and international universities with the School of Architecture + Design at Virginia Tech. The success of this design education model is directly due to the impressive leadership of Director Jaan Holt and administrative coordinator Henry Hollander. Their contributions are recognized as reaching well beyond the academic environment to the architecture profession at large,” said Jack Davis, FAIA, dean of the College of Architecture and Urban Studies, Reynolds Metals Professor of Architecture, and president-elect of the Virginia Society AIA.

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