On Thursday night I get the honour of handing out some fellowships, some certificates and the chains of office to our incoming Queensland Chapter President Michael Lavery. It should be good fun and a great chance to mix with my professional peers and celebrate our resilience in what can be a challenging game!
During my presidency, the two most common comments from members have been ‘how much time does it take?’ and ‘thanks for taking it on’. The role is demanding and has tested my wisdom at times and I have made my fair share of mistakes. Would I do it again? In a heart beat! It has been an amazing experience to represent our profession and state of Queensland, in a range of forums and meetings and to speak passionately about what we all do and the contributions we make to society culturally and through our built work.
The two years have been full of challenges as we worked through some difficult staff changes at both a national and state level, along with issues in design safety across the nation. I think we are making some headway as we get to chair a new sub-committee on leadership and governance in construction, set up on our suggestion at a recent Queensland Ministerial Construction Council meeting.
I am particularly delighted, we had success at a National level in re-uniting the Gold Coast and the Northern Rivers architectural community that now allows Queensland based architects to nominate projects based in the Tweed into our regional awards system. Michael Lavery and Alice Hampson (incoming National President) will need to continue this advocacy at National to make the situation more permanent.
The State Awards system is now back in a format enjoyed by our members and once again we need strong advocacy at National to maintain this system that ensures all projects are visited by jury members. In order for this to happen we need to be sure our awards are well sponsored and run financially successfully to avoid scrutiny in what have been challenging financial times for the Institute.
Nationally, we have had some successes along the way under Julia Cambage’s leadership including the new Acumen online notes, website, reduction in membership fees for our younger cohort, a new PALs course and some work on the internal culture of the organisation.
During my presidency I have continued to act as a co convener of PALs with Ryan Loveday and worked with National on the new course delivery which gets rolled out this year. I love this role and working with our aspiring members to build a strong culture of ethical and professional architects.
We now have a brand new staff team in Queensland under Alice-Anne McRobbie who has taken on the new role with gusto! With her team, Michael Lavery and our new Chapter Council I am sure we are in good hands.
At these occasions it is right to thank all those wonderful people that have helped me over the last two years in my role, but even more appropriate to put it in writing.
Firstly the members and in particular those stalwart members from the regions, who have always been supportive and interested in our institution and made me feel welcome in the role and have supported me every step of the way.
The members on Chapter Council have provided wise input into decisions in governance and have helped me navigate through some tricky situations at times. They have been wonderful!
Thank you to my business partners at Fulton Trotter Architects during my presidency including Mark Trotter, Robert Wesener, Greg Isaac, John Ward, Katerina Dracopoulos, Paul Sekava, Ryan Loveday and Nathan Hildebrandt.
Lastly thanks to my lovely wife Mary and family who have listened to all my tragic moments, triumphs and funny stories for the last two years….its been quite a ride!
Thanks again members for the privilege of representing our profession and I look forward to continuing our work to make the world a better place through architecture. We desperately need to keep ‘blowing our own trumpet’.
See you as a volunteer down at PALs or at one of our many events and functions in 2020 and beyond.