Delegates to the American Institute of Architects (AIA) national convention in Chicago elected Russell A. Davidson, FAIA, (AIA Westchester Hudson Valley) to serve as the 2015 AIA first vice president/president-elect and 2016 AIA president. William J. Bates, AIA, and Francis M. Pitts, FAIA, will each serve as vice president from 2015 through 2016; John A. Padilla, AIA, as the Institute’s Secretary from 2015 through 2016.

Russell A. Davidson, FAIA, 2015 First Vice President/2016 President-Elect

Davidson, a former president of his local component in 1999 and president of AIA New York State in 2007, joined the AIA National Board in 2009 and served as AIA vice president from 2012-2013. Throughout out his national leadership tenure, Davidson has maintained a special focus on government and public advocacy for architects and architecture. Davidson practices with KG&D Architects in Mount Kisco, N.Y., where he has worked for 28 years, holding every position from junior draftsperson to managing principal. Davidson earned a degree in Architectural Aesthetics from Union College in Schenectady, N.Y., and a MArch from Rensselaer Polytechnic Institute in Troy, N.Y.

“Public awareness needs to become the lens through which the AIA views all of its efforts,” Davidson says. “With a renewed focus and prioritization of the many programs now in place, the AIA can and should be more relevant to practitioners and the public. Many of our practitioners and firms, including my own, are fighting real battles every day to maintain and build value in the services we deliver, and to convince our clients to invest in quality design. The AIA can and should improve the perceived value of our profession which will yield positive results for all architects.”

William J. Bates, AIA, 2015–2016 AIA Vice President

Bates, from AIA Pittsburgh, currently serves on the AIA National Board. He began his AIA leadership tenure in 1988 when he was elected president of AIA Pittsburgh. Bates went on to become president of AIA Pennsylvania not once, but twice, in 1991 and 2011. Another AIA leadership feat Bates accomplished twice was helping to organize the Prince Charles-helmed Remaking Cities Conference in Pittsburgh in 1988, and 25 years later, in 2013. He has held a number of corporate facilities design and management positions throughout his career, including working as the national manager of design for the Westinghouse Corporation and the vice president of strategic facilities planning for PNC Bank. He is currently the vice president of real estate for EPHG, Inc. Bates holds a BArch from the University of Notre Dame.

Francis M. Pitts, FAIA, 2015–2016 AIA Vice President

Pitts, from AIA Eastern New York, has served his home chapter of the AIA in a wide array of leadership positions: secretary, treasurer, and president. He was also president of AIA New York State in 2010. With AIA National, Pitts served as President of the Academy of Architecture for Health in 2000, and as a Regional Director on the board from 2011 to 2013. Pitts founded his firm, architecture+, in Troy, N.Y., in 1984, and since then the firm has garnered over 30 design awards, including four state and regional AIA awards. architecture+ is a 30-person regional practice with an international niche in healthcare architecture. Pitts’ specialized expertise has made him a leader in the fields of psychiatric hospital design, design for special populations, long-term care, and secure institutions. Pitts earned a Bachelor of Building Science degree in 1975 and a BArch degree in 1976, both from Rensselaer Polytechnic Institute.

John A. Padilla, AIA, 2015–2016 AIA Secretary

Padilla, from AIA Santa Fe, began his tenure in AIA leadership more than 16 years ago. He served as president of AIA Santa Fe in 2002 and as AIA New Mexico president in 2004. He served the Western Mountain Region as treasurer from 2005–2006, and as a Regional Director on the AIA National Board from 2007–2009. In 2010, Padilla was elected AIA National Vice President, a position he held from 2011–2012. A strong proponent of professional diversity, Padilla served on the AIA Board Diversity Council and helped develop the AIA’s Shadow an Architect program, which exposes school children from underserved communities to architecture and design. Padilla is a senior associate at SMPC Architects, a firm that specializes in institutional and commercial projects, and manages its Santa Fe office. Padilla attended San Antonio College and the University of Houston.

About The American Institute of Architects
Founded in 1857, members of the American Institute of Architects consistently work to create more valuable, healthy, secure, and sustainable buildings, neighborhoods, and communities. Through nearly 300 state and local chapters, the AIA advocates for public policies that promote economic vitality and public well being. Members adhere to a code of ethics and conduct to ensure the highest professional standards. The AIA provides members with tools and resources to assist them in their careers and business as well as engaging civic and government leaders, and the public to find solutions to pressing issues facing our communities, institutions, nation and world. Visit