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design + practice exchange

new orleans + miami

wia + aia

Saturday, Nov. 6 9:00am-12:30pm CST

What is the Design + Practice Exchange?

design + practice exchange

(RE)VITALIZE is this year's theme for WIA New Orleans’ annual Design + Practice Exchange (DPE): a two-day virtual symposium of compelling conversations and design presentations, centering the voices of women in architecture.


This year, the AIA + WIA New Orleans are partnering with WIA Miami to develop the third annual DPE with a focus on living with water.

The goal of this program is to advance and promote women leaders of all racial, ethnic and economic backgrounds in architecture and the allied design/building industries.

Architects, designers and policy makers from each city will be paired to provide perspective and context from both communities.


HSW and CEU Credits available. This event is open to people of all gender identities.

 Audience during 2019 DPE 


Elizabeth Yeampierre
Executive Director, UPROSE
National Moderator

Elizabeth Yeampierre is an internationally recognized Puerto Rican attorney and environmental and climate justice leader of African and Indigenous ancestry born and raised in New York City.


A national leader in the climate justice movement, Elizabeth is the co-chair of the Climate Justice Alliance. She is Executive Director of UPROSE, Brooklyn's oldest Latino community based organization. Her award winning vision for an inter-generational, multi-cultural and community led organization is the driving force behind UPROSE.


She is a long-time advocate and trailblazer for community organizing around just, sustainable development, environmental justice and community-led climate adaptation and community resiliency in Sunset Park. 

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Margarita Jover
Associate Professor, Tulane School of Architecture
Keynote Speaker - New Orleans

Margarita Jover received a Master of Architecture degree from the Polytechnic University of Catalonia in 1995. Together with Iñaki Alday, she founded the internationally awarded firm aldayjover architecture and landscape in 1996 in Barcelona, Spain.


The multidisciplinary, research-based practice focuses on in1.2novation and is particularly renowned for its leadership in a new approach to the relation between cities and rivers, in which the natural dynamics of flooding become part of the public space.

Allyson Gantt
Chief of Communications + Public Affairs, Everglades National Park 
Keynote Speaker - Miami

Allyson Gantt has been a park ranger with the National Park Service for over 25 years. She currently serves as the Chief of Communications and Public Affairs for Everglades and Dry Tortugas National Parks, and prior to that was the Director of Education bringing local students and teachers to the parks.

She started her career at Glen Canyon National Recreation Area in Arizona and did brief assignments at Grand Teton National Park in Wyoming, Acadia National Park in Maine, and nearby Dry Tortugas National Park in Florida.

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Ursula Emery McClure, FAAR, AIA, LEED AP BD+C
Founding Partner 
emerymcclure architecture
Revitalize Speaker - New Orleans

Ursula Emery McClure, FAAR, AIA, LEED AP BD+C is a founding partner of emerymcclure architecture and in addition to the firm has also served as a Professor in the School of Architecture at Louisiana State University.


The design research practice of emerymcclure architecture speculates on the role of design in the confluence of multiple, seemingly contrary systems and aspires to develop tectonics that configure their futures. It engages this mission through design works, research, writings and teaching. The built work, writings, and design speculations of emerymcclure architecture have been published in a wide range of periodicals including professional, academic, and popular press.

Marilys Nepomechie, FAIA 
Professor and Associate Dean, Florida International University College of Communication, Architecture + The Arts
Revitalize Speaker - Miami

Marilys Nepomechie, FAIA, DPACSA, is a Professor of Architecture, and Associate Dean at the Florida  International University College of Communication, Architecture + The Arts.


Her creative work and  scholarship focus on the environmental, cultural and social contexts of design. It includes a broad range of  proposals for resilient, affordable infrastructure and housing, many conducted through collaborative  community-based design processes. Included in the archives of the U.S. National Building Museum, the  work of her practice has been honored with over 40 professional and academic awards; national and  international exhibition; and wide publication.  

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Haley Allen,
Architect, Phoenix, AZ
Renew Speaker - New Orleans

Haley Allen, RA, LEED AP BD+C, is an architect based in Phoenix, AZ. Born and raised in rural west Tennessee, she developed a fascination with the environment and the ways it can be shaped to serve and foster communities. Childhood family vacations introduced her to the art of architecture which she chose to pursue at the University of Tennessee.


After receiving her Bachelor of Architecture, she moved to New Orleans where she fell in love with the mysteries, beauty, and unique challenges of the coastal landscape. She spent seven years with New Orleans firm EskewDumezRipple where she worked on a variety of projects from interior renovation to full service new construction. 

Pat Bosch,
Design Director, Principal
Renew Speaker - Miami

A founding partner of the Miami studio of Perkins and Will since 1996, Pat Bosch leads the office as its Design Director. Internationally recognized for her design acumen and collaborative work style, Pat routinely brings together diverse groups of stakeholders to generate ideas and find common ground; design solutions emerge out of the strong partnerships she builds with her clients.


Pat takes a humanistic and environmentally responsible approach to design that is supported by research and meticulously executed process. She combines edgy creativity with a careful examination of every project’s program, context, region, and local culture to produce design solutions so innovative that they consistently challenge the status quo. 

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Dana Brown, MLA
Landscape Architect, New Orleans, LA
Restore Speaker - New Orleans

Dana has over three decades of experience as a landscape architect and planner. She has worked for firms in New Orleans, Baton Rouge, Boston, and Orange County, California, including two of the largest design firms in the U.S. In 2004, she founded her firm now known as Dana Brown and Associates to pursue her philosophy of landscape design, which is to design legible landscapes that respond to the ecological integrity of the land and reflect the cultural heritage of its people.

As a native of New Orleans, Dana understands the vital need for dynamic water management and is a pioneer in the field of green infrastructure. Many of her green infrastructure projects are used as demonstrations of best management practices.

Dana is the author of “Using Plants for Stormwater Management: A Green Infrastructure Guide for the Gulf South.”

Aida M. Curtis, ASLA
Principal, Curtis + Rogers Design Studio, Inc.
Restore Speaker - Miami

Aida Curtis has over 35 of experience as a landscape architect, arborist, certified landscape inspector and leader of her firm Curtis + Rogers Design Studio. Managing the go-to Hispanic/Woman-owned landscape architecture firm in South Florida has given her the platform to advance the practice of landscape architecture via environmental resilience, social equity and mentorship of future leaders.  Aida believes in the power of collaboration and strongly believes that gender balanced leadership is essential to solving the complex issues facing our world, today.  Aida is a frequent speaker on the importance of landscape architecture in addressing climate change impacts.


Our Mentors


Hagar Abdou graduated from Florida International University with a Master of Architecture degree and has recently joined M.C Harry and Associates, an architectural firm with over 60 years of award-winning experience. Art and design have always been part of her upbringing, but the decision to study architecture came later in her 20s when she unexpectedly stumbled upon the knowledge of what it means to become an architect and the importance of this profession. “I believe that architecture chose me. I didn’t know anything about being an Architect and for a long period of time I was uncertain of what career I wanted to pursue, suddenly I found myself doing exactly what I love, and I can’t imagine doing anything different. The love I always had for art and design, it’s as if I unknowingly was preparing for this moment.”

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Christine Cangelosi “CC” Redmon, AIA, LEED AP BD+C, is a native New Orleanian who received her Bachelor of Interior Design from LSU in 2010.  CC continued on to Georgia Institute of Technology and received her Master of Architecture in 2013.


She returned home to New Orleans, joining Eskew Dumez Ripple in 2017, where she works on their Learning Environments team. 

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Naomi Harrison, LEEP AP, Assoc. AIA is a Senior Project Manager at MCHarry Associates, a Miami architectural firm that specializes in public sector projects. She oversees the firms K-12 educational projects. At MCHarry she leads the Community Internship program in partnership with the local school board and is responsible for mentoring high school interns at the firm.


Most recently she has been on the team to successfully reinstate the NOMA , South Florida chapter and currently sits on the board as the Treasurer. She is also on the AIA Miami Board where she has actively been part of several committees including Women in Architecture (WIA) Miami and the Scholarship Committee. 

Mia Kaplan is an interdisciplinary artist and designer from Southeast Louisiana. She has a BFA in Drawing and Printmaking from the Memphis College of Art, and a Master’s in Architecture from Tulane University.


She is currently finishing up a Master’s in Preservation Studies at Tulane and completing her field practicum as an architectural renderer for the National Center for Preservation Technology and Training’s “Slave and Tenant Farmer Housing Documentation Project”. Mia is now a designer at  Cushing Terrell where she works in a variety of markets including Commercial, Retail, Historic Preservation, and Public Art.

Amanda Rivera New Orleans Mentor

Amanda C. Rivera joined Tulane University in January of 2021 as the University Architect where she directs all campus planning activities for the university.


Amanda develops, implements, and maintains the university’s Master Plan, and provides oversight of major building construction and campus improvement projects in regard to aesthetic, programmatic, sustainable and performance capacities.


Prior to 2021, Amanda was a Senior Associate with EskewDumezRipple. With leadership on a range of project types, her focus extended to the urban environments/ outdoor spaces, which she considers an extension of the Architect’s larger responsibility.


Amanda Rosenfeld, AIA, NCARB, LEEP AP BD+C, WELL AP,  is a registered Architect in the State of Florida with eight years of experience serving the architectural community. She is a strong advocate for sustainable design, sitting on the steering committee for the Living Future Florida Collaborative, participating in multiple LEED and WELL projects, and promoting environmental resilience. Amanda's focus is in hospitality design. When not drawing, she volunteers on the AIA Miami Board as one of the Vice Presidents and chairs multiple committees, such as the Young Architect Forum, ARE, and Mentorship Committees. Amanda was awarded the AIA Miami Associate of the Year Award in 2016, the AIA Miami & Fort Lauderdale Emerging Professionals Volunteer of the Year Award in 2018, the EP Spotlight for the Summer 2018 Edition of the AIA Florida/Caribbean Architect magazine, the AIA Florida Individual Member of the Year Award in 2019, and the AIA Miami Emerging Professionals Award in 2020. Amanda is a graduate of the University of Miami, where she was awarded the prestigious Alpha Rho Chi Medal of Architecture in 2013.

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Lourdes Solera, FAIA, RID 

is a Principal at MCHarry & Associates, a third-generation owner of the 60 + year old architectural firm that specializes in public sector work.  With 30+ years of professional practice,  Lourdes's clients and the construction teams have praised her hands on approach to project management and how her leadership is a testament to the success that can be achieved when people within several organizations work and strive towards a common goal.  She focuses on educational projects as well as historic restoration.


Lourdes is highly regarded as an architect committed to both public service and advancing the cause of architecture. She has been a dedicated leader at the American Institute of Architects (AIA) for many years and was elevated to the AIA College of Fellows in 2012.  Today she serves on the AIA Florida Board of Directors as First Vice-President/ President Elect.  She will be AIA Florida's President in 2022. She is co-founder of AIA Miami’s Women in Architecture Committee.  Through her activities, Lourdes has elevated the public awareness of the power of design and the influence of architects through leadership and community initiatives.


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Gabriel Virdure is a New Orleans native who has been practicing architecture for nearly 20 years. She holds a Bachelor of Architecture degree from the University of Louisiana of Lafayette, and worked for six years on residential projects before joining Trapolin-Peer Architects (TPA) in 2005.


As an Associate at TPA Gabriel has worked on a diverse array of projects and has experience with multi-family, hospitality, governmental and institutional developments. She is involved in a number of professional organizations including AIA, WIA and CREW where she is currently president of the New Orleans Chapter.




Friday, August 27, 9amCST/10amEST

Unprecedented sea level rising calls for unprecedented measures. How will New Orleans and Miami address rising sea levels?


National Moderator: Elizabeth Yeampierre
New Orleans Speaker: Margarita Jover

Miami Speaker: Allyson Gantt

Friday, August 27, 12:30pmCST/1:30pmEST


Defined as a many-sided effort including restoration, reconstruction, and actions aimed at revival of a building/development.

New Orleans Speaker: Ursula Emery McClure, FAAR, AIA, LEED AP BD +C

Miami Speaker: Marilys Nepomechie, FAIA


Friday, August 27, 1:30pmCST/2:30pmEST

Rebuild economic viability by attracting external private and public investment and by encouraging business start-ups.

New Orleans Speaker: Haley Allen, RA, LEED AP BD+C

Miami Speaker: Pat Bosch, LEED AP BD+C

Friday, August 27, 3:00pmCST/4:00pmEST


Preservation of structures such as historic sites, houses, monuments, and other significant properties through careful maintenance and upkeep. 

New Orleans Speaker: Dana Brown

Miami Speaker: Aida Curtis, ASLA


Small group discussions with New Orleans and Miami mentors across the career spectrum. 

New Orleans Mentors: Mia Kaplan, Assoc. AIA, Amanda Rivera, AIA, Christine Cangelosi Redmond, AIA + Gabriel Virdure, AIA 

Miami Mentors: Hagar Abdou, Naomi Harrison, Assoc. AIA, Amanda Rosenfeld, AIA + Lourdes Solera, FAIA

Saturday, November 6, 9:30amCST/10:30amEST


*All times are Central Standard TIme (CST)

9:00 am
Coffee + Networking
9:30 am
11:00 am
Large Group Breakout
11:30 am
Closing Remarks

Friday, August 27

Saturday, November 6

9:00 am
Coffee + Networking
10 am
GROUNDSWELL - Keynote  Lecture
11:15 am
15 minute Yoga Break
11:30 am
Afternoon Break + Lunch
12:30 pm
Session 1 - REVITALIZE
1:30 pm
Session 2 - RENEW
2:30 pm
15 minute Dance Break
2:45 pm
Session 3 - RESTORE
4:00 pm
Happy Hour Cocktail Demonstration


(re)vitalize presented by:
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Level 2 Sponsors:

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Break Sponsors:


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DPE 2021 is grateful for our
"Pay it Forward" Contributors:

AM Liles Architect

Campo Architects

Michelle Carroll-Barr



Regina Davis

EoA Group


Gould Evans

landscapeforms/Mallary Morvant


Jessica Walker/Workshop WDXL


AIA Miami

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Miami, FL 33131

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AIA New Orleans

1000 St. Charles Ave.
New Orleans, LA 70130