David Burney, FAIA
Commissioner, New York City's Department of Design and Construction
David J. Burney, FAIA was appointed Commissioner of the New York City Department of Design and Construction (“DDC”) in January 2004, by Mayor Michael R. Bloomberg. DDC manages capital projects for a variety of City agencies including the Departments of Transportation and Environmental Protection; and for the many cultural institutions such as libraries and museums that receive City capital funds. At Mayor Bloomberg’s direction, David Burney launched a City-wide “Design and Construction Excellence Initiative” with the goal of raising the quality of design and construction of public works throughout New York City.
Prior to joining DDC, Mr. Burney was Director of Design and Capital Improvement at the New York City Housing Authority where, in 2002, the agency was awarded a National Design Award Special Commendation by the Smithsonian Institute. From 1982 to 1990 Mr. Burney practiced architecture with the New York Firm of Davis Brody & Associates where he was involved in a variety of projects including the Zeckendorf Towers on Union Square and the Rose Building at Lincoln Center.Mr. Burney was educated at the Heriot-Watt University in Edinburgh and at the University of London. He was the recipient of the AIA NYC Chapter Public Architect Award in 1996 and received a Sloane Public Service Award in 2003.
Principal SHoP Architects, SHoP Construction
Gregg Pasquarelli is a Founding Principal of SHoP Architects and SHoP Construction, established in 1996 and 2007, respectively. Mr. Pasquarelli received a Bachelor of Science from the School of Business at Villanova University (1987), and a Master of Architecture from Columbia University (1994) where he graduated with Honors for Excellence in Design. He has lectured, exhibited, and been published internationally.
Mr. Pasquarelli was named the Saarinen Professor of Architecture at Yale University in Fall 2006 and appointed as the Louis I. Kahn Visiting Assistant Professor at Yale in 2004. He also served as professor at the University of Virginia (2003) and Columbia University’s Graduate School of Architecture (1996 – 2003). Mr. Pasquarelli serves on the Architectural League Board of Directors and is a Young Leader’s Fellow of the National Committee on US-China Relations.
Director of Education, Cooper-Hewitt National Design Museum
Caroline Payson currently serves as the Director of Education at the Cooper-Hewitt, National Design Museum. Payson has an extensive background in arts education, and was formerly director of educational services at Maryland Public Television, where she oversaw a $10 million grant to create “Thinkport,” an online, interactive education super-site for the state of Maryland. She has also led a number of education initiatives using interactive and web-based resources to improve reading instruction, distance learning courses and school curricula. Payson, a former chair of the liberal studies department of Parsons School of Design, holds a master’s degree from Johns Hopkins’ Writing Seminars program and a bachelor’s degree from Sarah Lawrence College.
Dean of Parsons the New School for Design, Partner SR+T Architects
Joel E. Towers is the Dean of Parsons The New School For Design and Associate Professor of Architecture and Sustainable Design at the school. Towers has held several positions at the university since joining the faculty during the 2003/04 academic year. In 2007 he has appointed Dean of the School of Design Strategies [SDS]. Towers established and directed the Tishman Environment and Design Center at The New School and held the position of Associate Provost for Environmental Studies at the university. Towers also served as Parsons’ first Director of Sustainable Design and Urban Ecology.
Towers is a founding partner of SR+T Architects. He received a B.S. in Architecture from the University of Michigan School of Architecture and a Master of Architecture from Columbia University. In 1992, after working with William McDonough Architects where he directed projects including The Hannover Principles: Design for Sustainability that helped codify that firm’s environmental thinking, Towers formed SR+T with Karla Rothstein. Towers’ focus on ecological issues and their relationship to both design conceptualization and construction methodology is the foundation of his research and his teaching. It is also central in the work of SR+T. Towers was previously a member of the faculty of the Graduate School of Architecture at Columbia University where he taught advanced architecture and urban design studios and developed and taught a seminar exploring critical ecologies and environmentally reflexive architecture.