The Australian Institute of Architects has named its new national president, Melbourne based-architect Shelley Penn.
Standing as the leader of the national architectural institute, Penn is committed to inspiring and leading all in this industry, with a specific focus of empowering smaller practices.
“I’m proud to stand as leader of an organisation that is accustomed to seeing directors of larger practices in this seat, and I want to inspire other small practitioners, young architects and women to get involved through Chapter and National Councils,” he says.
Penn stands as the 73rd president of the architectural authority. As a Melbourne-based architect, she has drawn the common comparisons between Melbourne and Sydney architectural styles and, while not offering a definitive favourite, it is clear that the cultural richness of Melbourne appeals to the architect.
A report from the Property Observer reveals Penn’s past lecturing at the University of Melbourne and what they have labeled as a her particular ‘concern with the poetic capacity for architecture to enrich the human condition. In describing Melbourne, Penn cites the human appeal created through its infrastructure and architecture as its most attractive feature.
“The flat topography, the network of transport and road access, relative affordability to get to and be ‘among’ culture, be it arts events, food culture, sport, and interesting, innovative and provocative architecture, that’s all part of a city’s cultural richness,” says Penn.
The AIA was pleased to welcome Penn to the position.
“We are excited to have Shelley as the next advocate for not only the institute but our members and the broader architectural community,” says AIA chief CEO David Parken.
Parken also thanked former position holder Brian Zulajkha for going to ‘great lengths for the profession and the institute.’
The national architecture world welcomes the president, who is expected to bring innovation and inspiration to her role in guiding Australian architecture to the next level.