Public Announcements


President's Message

Welcome to 2021! The Executive Committee and the Board of Trustees of AIA Newark & Suburban Architects wish to welcome you all to a new year filled with new hope, opportunities, and enthusiasm.

Last year was challenging all around, but they say to find the silver lining in it all. We proved that we can be resilient, we can be flexible, we can be innovative. As difficult as it was, I would venture to say that we all learned some valuable lessons about ourselves, our families, and our careers.

Looking ahead to this year, we are excited by the promise of what’s to come, even though it may currently seem unclear. As a board this year, we want to Empower our Members to Advocate for Ourselves, our Profession, and our Future.

Advocating for Ourselves: We are here to remind you all that if you need someone at such a difficult time, reach out. The AIA has enabled close relationships to form between us all. Our members become close friends, almost family. Although physical distancing is necessary right now, please don’t forget your network is here for you, as close as ever, in any capacity.

Advocating for our Profession: We are also here to elevate each other. We are each other’s go-to people, our checks, and our balances. We value each other for our professional insights, but we can show the public that we have so much more to offer than what the TV image of Mr. Brady represented. We are innovators, problem solvers, creative, and intuitive professionals on every scale.

Advocating for the Future: Looking always ahead, we must fulfill our critical role in society by helping create a healthy and prosperous world. It has become more evident now than ever before how the built environment impacts our lives in every way. It is our time to ensure that architects come back stronger than ever! We can start by being the change we want to see in our world.

Thank you all for your ongoing support for our Chapter and our Organization. We are all looking forward to this year and we are planning our regularly scheduled programs, as well as a few new ones.

Our first General Meeting will be on the evening of Thursday, March 4, with a registration email to follow. Please look out for upcoming Virtual Architect Conversations, General Meetings, among other events. While they will still be virtual for now, we are hopeful that we can all see each other again towards the end of the year and be together with the family we have formed.

Yours in Service,
Brandon Warshofsky, AIA
2021 AIANS President

[email protected]


Kenneth A. Underwood, FAIA

Kenneth A. Underwood, 91, of Glen Ridge, NJ passed away peacefully on June 16, 2020.  A native of Glen Ridge, he lived his entire life there apart from his time at college and in the Navy.  He was the son of the late Kenneth C. Underwood and Gertrude N. Underwood of Glen Ridge.  Ken held a B.A. magna cum laude and M.F.A. in Architecture from Princeton University.  During his academic career he won an NIAE award and was a finalist in the Paris Prize Competition.

Following graduate school, he served for three years (1953-1956) in the U.S. Navy Reserve, completing Officer Candidate School in Newport, Rhode Island, Navy Ground Operations Officer training in Pensacola, Florida and Intelligence School at the Naval Observatory in Washington, DC.  He served as an Air Intelligence Officer attached first to the staff of Rear Admiral Charles Stanhope Ring and then to fighter squadron VF-193, where he served with Alan Shepard.  He saw duty on three aircraft carriers in the Pacific Fleet: the USS Oriskany,  USS Hornet and USS Boxer as our armed forces protected the DMZ between North and South Korea.  He retired with the rank of Lieutenant.

Following his active service, he returned to Glen Ridge where he spent the rest of his life as an active member of the community.  He was a charter member of the Glen Ridge Kiwanis Club, serving as its president in 1968, Young Republicans, Glen Ridge Borough Council, Chairman of the Glen Ridge Planning Board, Trustee of Mountainside Hospital, Trustee of Bonnie Brae Farm for Boys in Millington, President of the Newark and Suburban Chapter of the American Institute of Architects, member of the Princeton University Alumni Schools Committee, President of the Freeman Gardens Association and at the Glen Ridge Congregational Church as head of an ushering team and on that church’s Appropriations, Property and Personnel Committee.

In 1993 he was inducted into the College of Fellows of the American Institute of Architects and also won the Herman C. Litwack Award for his service to the Newark and Suburban Chapter of the AIA.  From 1974 to 1980 Ken served as member of the New Jersey State Board of Architects, as well as its vice president in 1976 and president in 1977.  During this time he served the National Council of Architectural Registration Boards Intern Development Program Committee as they put the new IDP program in place to establish experience standards to be met by interns before they would be allowed to sit for their licensing examination.  Following retirement he served on the Board of Trustees of his co-op and most recently as Treasurer.

His career began with Staab and Immen in Glen Ridge.  In 1961 he sat for the four-day Architects’s Registration Examination and obtained his license that same year.  He then worked for Moore and Hutchins in New York where he became an Associate, HLW in New York where he was an Associate, The Grad Partnership of Newark where he was an Associate Partner and finally as Director of Justice Facilities for the Vitetta Group of Philadelphia.  His portfolio included a number of civic and institutional buildings such as the Pennsylvania Justice Center and the Goucher College Chapel as well as historic preservation projects such as the Krueger Mansion restoration in Newark and restoration of Richard Upjohn’s St. Mark’s Episcopal Church in West Orange.

He met his beloved wife Barbara after his Navy service and they married in 1959 settling in Glen Ridge.  They remained deeply devoted to each other for 59 years until her death in 2018.

He is survived by his son, Kenneth C. Underwood of Glen Ridge, granddaughter, Elizabeth P. Underwood of Philadelphia and grandson, Garrett W. Underwood of Southern Pines, North Carolina.

A memorial service will be held at a future date yet to be determined.

If any colleagues wish to make a donation in Mr. Underwood’s name to the AIANJ Scholarship Foundation fund., checks can be sent to AIANJ care of Karen Reiser at 414 River View Plaza  Trenton, NJ 08611-3420.


President's Farewell Message

I want to thank you - the Newark and Suburban membership and the board - for allowing me to serve as your President for the year 2020. This year will long be etched in our history books as a global event altered our everyday life. That global event would be COVID-19, a virus that showed no mercy as it affected almost every human being on this planet. To those members whose families were affected by this terrible virus, either directly or indirectly, my heart goes out to you.

I was looking forward to seeing our members in person, face to face dialogue on our detailed programs and our informal discussions during our meetings. Instead, our laptops, desktops, tablets and smartphones became our gateway to seeing and interacting with each other.

I need to thank a couple of our sponsors Pella and Anderson, for stepping up and setting up webinars that offered CEUs for our members. I thank Loewen Windows for offering webinars during the year to keep our members engaged. My appreciation also goes out to MaGrann Associates for offering our first webinar in April 2020 to our members. My thanks go to Julie Pagnotta our Section Administrator, Trustees Frank Truilo and Ron Weston for helping to organize the webinar event and CEUs for our members.

Our board members stepped in, and thanks to First Vice President Christy DiBartolo and 2020 Trustee Ronald Weston, to organize our mini-roundtables during the summer months to keep our members engaged. Thanks to Past President Paul Tiajoloff, Board Secretary Francisco Grimaldi and Victor Angulo for re-thinking our CANStruction event and making it part of a food drive which during the pandemic was greatly appreciated.

This year we did a “virtual” Design Awards run by Past President Alex Gotthelf who did a phenomenal job in a short amount of time in setting up an event that for the first time included students from Kean University and the New Jersey Institute of Technology.

This year was not an easy one but as your President it was my duty to serve the membership. Thanks to John Fallon Newark and Suburban Treasurer, who in addition to running his firm during the pandemic, with board member Elizabeth Pacheco, kept an eye on our finances and made sure we would fiscally viable in the upcoming year.

As racial inequality became a major platform in 2020 I was glad to see AIA National and AIA New Jersey step up to address the issues. I hope to see more diversity and more opportunities for everyone through AIA Newark and Suburban. In the beginning I spoke of “Citizen Architect” which focused on the responsibility of architects to interact with local government but also discovered how architects use their voice and spoke up and acted on behalf of racial injustice.

The year, 2021, there will be a new path and new leadership. I welcome Brandon Warshofsky, incoming President, an active member of our section and at the state level, through his work with EPiC and engaging young architects. I hope and pray that as the vaccine and treatment for this pandemic take effect, our venues will be open, our masks can be taken off and we can once again shake hands and give that much needed hug to our members.

I ask you that as the year comes to a close, please do not forget to renew your AIA membership.

The board and I actively worked to make sure that we are accountable to you but also we need the membership to give us their feedback and thoughts so we can be an active and relevant voice in the profession. If you are interested in serving on a committee, have a suggestion, or something you would like see, we look forward to hearing from you at [email protected] .

Andrew Thompson, AIA