December 16, 2015

Ralph Hawkins, FAIA, FACHA, Chairman, HKS, Inc., was presented with the prestigious American College of Healthcare Architects (ACHA) Lifetime Achievement Award at a reception held November 14. “Ralph is a leader of leaders in healthcare design, research and education,” noted Peter Bardwell, 2013 ACHA President, in presenting the award. 

The ACHA Lifetime Achievement Award is the highest honor that the American College of Healthcare Architects can bestow on an architect. It is conferred by the national ACHA Board of Regents in recognition of a significant body of work of lasting influence on the theory and practice of healthcare architecture. The candidate must have evidenced great breadth, having influenced the direction of healthcare architecture through practice, teaching and/or research, and must be widely known by the quality of his or her projects or contributions to the profession. 

Hawkins has devoted his entire 41-year career to the practice of healthcare architecture, with a specific emphasis on creating healing environments. To help further define the role of healthcare design in serving communities, he created one of the industry’s first specialized interiors-based groups in 1987. In a global reach, Hawkins was one of the first architectural leaders to promote and educate the worldwide community on quality healthcare design. 

In 2010, he made a unique commitment to research with the launch of the first firm-based, nonprofit Center for Advanced Design Research and Evaluation (CADRE), dedicated to improving the design industry’s understanding of the built environment and exploring new ideas that inform design. 

Hawkins is a founding Fellow of the American College of Healthcare Architects, and he served on the Board of Regents in 2003, 2004 and 2005. He was influential on the ACHA’s first certification examination committee as it adopted standards that were “legally defensible and professionally sound.” He also served on the organization’s Ethics Committee and chaired the jury for the evaluation of candidates for the Council of Fellows in 2014. 

Hawkins served as an adjunct professor at his alma mater, the University of Texas at Arlington (UTA), where he taught graduate-level healthcare design from 2000 to 2002. He received the university’s highest honor, the Distinguished Alumni Award. He also established the H. Ralph Hawkins, FAIA, Professorship endowed fund. He will be serving on the UTA School of Healthcare Administration Advisory Board in 2016. At his other alma mater, Rice University, he is a member of the School of Architecture William Ward Watkin Council. 

Hawkins is one of over 400 certified healthcare architects in the United States and Canada. The ACHA’s mission is to distinguish its board-certified healthcare architects through certification, experience and rigorous standards. 

HKS, Inc. is a leading architectural design firm ranked among the top six architectural engineering firms, according to Building Design+Construction magazine. Since its founding in 1939, HKS has completed construction projects totaling more than $77 billion in more than 1,650 cities located in 84 countries. The firm operates from 26 offices worldwide. 

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