We Need Each Other

By Mary-Margaret Zindren, Executive Director/EVP

How does this pandemic-induced financial crisis differ from the Great Recession? It is unprecedented in the depth and breadth of its impact – and in how it has brought forth our shared humanity.
As I write this, we have held 10 of 17 scheduled virtual Town Hall meetings – listening sessions to understand the specific concerns, questions, and ideas members have related to the COVID-19 pandemic and its financial impact.
In these conversations, I have been deeply struck by your care and compassion. The conversations have quickly turned to how members of the architecture community can help each other, and how we can help the broader community in this time of extraordinary need.
What we have learned from these Town Hall meetings has already shaped our legislative advocacy and the resources we provide through our website, our CEs, and our committees and knowledge communities. We’re developing even more ways for you to keep in touch with us as this situation evolves; keep reading this issue of Matrix for additional ways to connect and help us serve you well.
Perhaps the most important learning for us as a staff team is a deepened sense of how much we care about you all as people. Holding only Zoom meetings these past two weeks has let us more into your world, and you into ours. In addition to knowing you as great architects, architectural designers, faculty members, thinkers, and volunteers, we now have been introduced to many of your home office setups, your dogs and cats, and your children. Thank you for staying connected to us and to each other, and for letting us into your world. When the reason you exist as an organization is to fight on behalf of the individuals who make up your membership, knowing those people more personally only makes you fight harder.
Our shared humanity is making us a stronger community – and we will need these strong bonds as we work to keep this community together, riding the waves of the weeks and months to come.

View the April 2020 edition of Matrix.