Robert Ivy is the part of the AIA – American Institute of Architects where he served as the Executive Vice President, and as of 2011 the Chief Executive Officer. Robert Ivy earned a Master’s of Architecture after attending Tulane University, and also holds a Bachelor of Arts in English earned from Sewanee The University of the South. In 2009, he received the Crain Award, considered to be the highest recognition offered to an individual by the American Business Media. In 2010 he was named “Master Architect” by the national architecture fraternity Alpha Rho Chi, as a result of his effectiveness in communicating the value that design holds. In addition, he received the Noel Polk Lifetime Achievement Award from MIAL – the Mississippi Institute of Arts and Letters.
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Robert Ivy was recently quoted in an article describing the benefits of joining a professional society. In the United States, according to reports from the American Society of Association Executive made in 2010, there are 92,000 trade and professional associations. Professional associations recruit workers, whereas trade associations attract companies to be their members. Different societies include different benefits that become available to its members after joining, such as educational programs, the chance to network, to opportunity to build credibility, etc.
Robert Ivy noted that despite the fact that architects are small in number compared to other professions, they have a strong voice. He went on to point out the fact that architects have an advocacy organization which ended up affecting tax legislation. Trade association usually prioritize political lobbying, and various professional societies have branches which engage in efforts in order to sway policymakers into taking decision that would benefit the society’s members. Thus, belonging to an association can boost their power to lobby.
Some societies, such as the American Institute of Architects, have codes of ethics, which can help give peace of mind to hiring managers or clients as it provides members with more credibility. The society’s EVP and CEO stated that architects are aware of the fact that the association stands for certain values, and becoming a member means adhering to those values and being held accountable.