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In keeping with our mission to advance a vital profession and our strategic priority of building and mentoring the profession, AIA Minnesota is currently exploring the potential of alternative/equivalent pathways to licensure for architects in Minnesota.

Prompted by recent developments at the national level – including a proposed national AIA resolution in 2022 and recommendations for alternative/equivalent paths to licensure put forward by NCARB in 2022 and 2023 – as well as recent changes to expand pathways to licensure in Minnesota for landscape architects, AIA Minnesota is exploring potential licensure paths, including those that do not require a NAAB-accredited degree.

It is anticipated that by the end of 2025, the AIA Minnesota Board of Directors will adopt a detailed policy position on this issue, then sharing its recommendations with the Minnesota Board of AELSAGID – the board that licenses architects in Minnesota. (It is the licensing board that actually determines whether alternative/equivalent pathways to licensure will be adopted and how such pathways would be structured. The licensing board does so through an extensive regulatory process.)

Based on the work of a 2023 Task Force and extensive input from the AIA Minnesota membership (including a recorded  Town Hall meeting held on September 19, 2023 ), the AIA Minnesota Board of Directors approved the following policy position on licensure pathways in December of 2023:

AIA Minnesota supports the creation and implementation of equivalent, equitable pathways to architect licensure in Minnesota, including options equivalent to a NAAB-accredited degree, in order to: (a) Expand access to the profession; and (b) Mitigate and remove barriers to becoming an architect in Minnesota, while maintaining significant rigor and focus on protecting the health, safety, and welfare of the public.

 In addition to approving this position, the AIA Minnesota Board created a new task force to further explore this issue throughout 2024 and 2025. Broader member engagement will take place at key points throughout this time period.

The 2024-2025 Licensing Task Force, structured by the AIA Minnesota Board and with individuals selected by AIA Minnesota’s president, Amy Kalar, AIA, NOMA; president-elect, Jennifer Christiaansen, AIA; and immediate past president, Sam Olbekson, AIA, AICAE, NOMA, are:

  • Ann Voda, AIA, chair (past president of AIA Minnesota)
    • President, BTR Architects
  • Christine Albertsson, AIA (representing the AIA Minneapolis Board of Directors)
    • Partner, Albertsson Hansen Architects
  • Trevor Bullen, AIA, NOMA (representing the Dunwoody School of Design, 2023 Task Force member)
    • Dean, School of Design, Dunwoody College
  • Wade Goodenberger, AIA (representing mid-size firm leaders, Greater Minnesota members)
    • Partner, CRW Architecture + Design Group
  • Richard Graves, FAIA (representing the University of Minnesota College of Design)
    • Director, Center for Sustainable Building Research, University of Minnesota; Associate Professor, University of Minnesota College of Design
  • DJ Heinle, AIA (representing the AIA Minnesota Architect Licensing Advisory Committee, 2023 Task Force member)
    • Vice President, Architecture, TKDA
  • Kevin Holm, AIA (representing the AIA Northern Minnesota Board of Directors, Greater Minnesota members)
    • Managing Principal, LHB
  • Sara Imhoff, AIA (2023 Task Force member)
    • Principal, Imprint Architecture and Design
  • Dagmara Larsen, AIA (representing mid-size firm leaders, 2023 Task Force member)
    • Principal, MSR Design
  • Mike Laverdure, AIA, AICAE (representing Greater Minnesota)
    • Principal Architect, DSGW
  • Katie Merten, Assoc. AIA (representing the AIA Minnesota Women in Architecture Committee)
    • Project Manager, St. Paul Public Schools
  • Skyler Moon, Assoc. AIA (representing the AIA St. Paul Board of Directors, Greater Minnesota members)
    • Project Coordinator, HGA
  • Jyotsna Sivaguru, AIA, NOMA (representing MSP NOMA) 
    • Architect, Auromira Architects
  • Ashley Vanden Bosch, AIA (representing the AIA Minneapolis Board of Directors, 2023 Task Force member)
    • Project Manager, PKA Architecture
  • Nicole Washburn, AIA (representing the AIA Minnesota Council of Firms)
    • Principal, JLG Architects