President Barack Obama has announced his intent to appoint two Harvard Graduate School of Design faculty members to the United States Commission of Fine Arts: Toni L. Griffin LF ’98, professor in practice of urban planning, and Alex Krieger MCP ’77, professor in practice of urban design.
Other current members and staff of the U.S. Commission of Fine Arts have strong ties to the GSD. Liza Gilbert AB ’59, MLA ’90 is a board member of the Dumbarton Oaks Park Conservancy in Washington, D.C. and is also Chair of its Signature Project Committee. Mia Lehrer, FASLA, MLA ’79 is the Founder and President of Mia Lehrer + Associates, an urban design and landscape architecture firm in Los Angeles. Elizabeth K. Meyer FASLA previously taught landscape architecture at the GSD. Additionally, two GSD alumni serve as staff members: Thomas Luebke, FAIA, MArch ’91, who is a member of the GSD Alumni Council, has served as Secretary since 2005 and Tony Simon MArch ’89 serves as Architect and Planner.
The seven-member Commission of Fine Arts is an independent federal agency tasked with advising the President, Congress, and both federal and District of Columbia governments on select matters of design and aesthetics. It was established by Congress in 1910 as a permanent body to advise the federal government on matters pertaining to the arts and national symbols, and to guide the architectural development of Washington, D.C.
Among other interests, the Commission reviews design proposed for memorials, coins, medals, and new or renovated government buildings. It also supports arts institutions in Washington, D.C. through the National Capital Arts and Cultural Affairs (NCACA) program. Each member is appointed in service terms of four years apiece. Krieger was first appointed to the CFA in Sept. 2012 and is up for reappointment of a second term. “These fine public servants bring a depth of experience and tremendous dedication to their important roles. I look forward to working with them,” Obama remarked in a White House press release.
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