A few words from Mike about that Civic Engagement bug …


Service to the Profession & Community Spotlight: Mike Malinowski, FAIA


The Chapter’s Civic Engagement Team (CET) are shining a spotlight, and building a repository of profiles, that celebrate the dedicated AIA Central Valley members who positively influence the profession and their communities through advocacy and volunteerism. Kudos to these individuals for creating “inspiration through action.” We hope they will inspire YOU to serve!

Do you know of an AIA member worthy of recognition? Please contact the CET via the Chapter office: 


Applied Architecture Inc.

How does your career trajectory include service to society and the profession, and what sustains your continued engagement?

After 40 years of running what I consider a boutique architectural practice, it’s hard to remember how I first caught the “service to society” bug – but it’s definitely part of my DNA. I can’t imagine not having a half dozen or more ‘projects’ that stretch out to the boundaries of the profession, my community, my country, my planet. Current service includes AIA National Center for Leadership, Architecture 2030 (new edition of the Zero Code for California); the ICC IEBC Code Committee, the Streamline Institute non profit behind the PASS permit streamlining program (President and founder), AIA CA consulting focused on Climate Action through Code and Regulatory Change; major efforts include bringing the ZeroCode into Cal Green; expanding the California Existing Building Code to include all three compliance paths with huge embodied carbon savings; mentoring – and learning from – my staff, and … well, you get the idea 

Is there a specific time that you felt your contributions made an impact and/or when your skills as an architect made a difference?

Once the habit develops, architecture seems to extend to include all human issues, and all of architecture takes on a ‘service to society’ focus. The potential for one person to make a difference is enormous, opportunities are relentless, and the only persistent obstacle is the length of a day.

Was there a specific person who “nudged” you to become involved?

Once you get really engaged in leadership you find yourself immersed in a pool filled with inspirational, action oriented, supportive and dynamic people … and that leads to a nudge a minute at times!

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