RACHEL MINNERY, FAIA is the Senior Director of Resilience, Adaptation and Disaster Assistance at The American Institute of Architects. She co-leads a coalition of nearly 50 signatories of the Building Industry Statement on Resilience, has been instrumental in the development of resilience rating systems for buildings and communities, and the launch of the AIA’s resilience online certificate program. Recently, she co-led the organization’s design and technical response to COVID-19 with Reopening America: Strategies for Safer Buildings. Rachel’s previous experience includes design and management in the non-profit and private sectors focusing on environmentally and socially responsible design. She is the co-founder of Architects Without Borders Seattle and has been recognized for leading groups of volunteer architects to disaster-stricken places. Rachel remembers the early days of CARVE for a Cause when AWBS went door to door at firms with a flyer to promote the event.
EKRAM HASSEN is the AWBS Projects Committee Co-Chair, and also a Co-lead of the Joyland Prime Academy project to deliver empowerment through education to an underserved community in Mombasa, Kenya. Ekram grew up in Debeso, a small village in the eastern (coffee!) region of Ethiopia and attended high school in Adama. She studied architecture at Kisama Africa University College in Addis Ababa with a minor in urban planning. After college, she worked in the affordable housing sector to address lack of affordable housing in Ethiopia. She received her Master of Architecture at Georgia Tech. Since 2015, when she accepted a position at Olson Kundig, she considers the mountains, dark sky, and fog of Seattle a welcome embrace, reminding her of her small village where she grew up. She would like all the entrants to know that she has probably carved fewer pumpkins than you, and if she had her way, everyone would be a winner!
SCOTT DOUGLAS is a past president of the Structural Engineers Association of Washington (SEAW). He became acquainted with AWBS after the 2010 Haitian Earthquake, volunteering to assist with the first AWBS travel team performing building damage assessments. Inspired by that trip, Scott organized a second SEAW/AWBS travel team two months later. Other international aid work followed, including a three-year deployment to Afghanistan with the Army Corps of Engineers, building damage assessments after the 2015 Nepal earthquake, and building evaluations in Afghanistan for the Canadian Department of Global Affairs. Scott is a board member with AWBS client Positive Action for Haiti (PAH), a small 501(c)(3) organization. Scott has been a champion for the current AWBS and PAH project, the Children's Home in Gonaives, Haiti, focused on delivering environmental education and safe housing for orphaned children. Scott is also a mentor for the University of Washington student chapter of Engineers Without Borders.