One of the highest honors attainable for an architect, being elevated to the AIA College of Fellows is a recognition of an architect’s personal achievements and contributions to society. In 2018, two HKS professionals were selected to join this esteemed assembly. Rand Ekman, HKS’ chief sustainability officer, and Nathan Butler, HKS’ Orlando office director, are members of AIA Chicago and AIA Orlando chapters, respectively.
For 25 years, Ekman has incorporated sustainable and responsible design thinking into his work, and the impact of his environmental leadership is felt throughout the architecture and design industry. Since 2008, Ekman has been central to the development of the AIA 2030 Commitment Program. 175 firms were included in the 2016 report with more than 2.7 billion square feet represented across the globe. Annual energy cost savings from the reported design work is more than $3 billion, and perhaps more importantly, CO2 emissions have been reduced by 16.7 million metric tons per year. As HKS’ chief sustainability officer, he is responsible for advancing sustainability in both our practice and approach.
Butler has led teams for more than 20 years across a wide range of projects and initiatives. Through a collaborative mentality, he facilitated a transformation of the AIA’s governance and leadership development models. With a focus on developing leaders by creating new opportunities for personal service, Butler has spearheaded numerous initiatives that engage architects and the public to address community issues through design. Butler has focused much of his career on the creation of new pathways for young professionals to lead. As a founding board member of the ACE Mentor Program of Central Florida, his efforts reach nearly 20,000 K-12 students annually, and increase our industry’s diversity by providing scholarship funds for minority students seeking to pursue architecture.