At the Young Architect Winter Series virtual conference session yesterday, “Mastering your inner game…” one question posed by Julia Jack was what is your purpose. Why do you do what you do? She said we should keep asking why of ourselves until you get to our endgame – why are you doing that thing today. Think of something you would give everything up for – that is your because / why. Your because / why drives you each day and gives you energy to keep going. Of course my first because / why is family and friends, but my purpose in life is to serve my community. It is why I make the decisions I make and do what I do each day. I believe that through architecture we can create a greater good.
This service above self approach to life leads me to make design, business, and life decisions. It helps me figure out where to put my time. It also opens me up to failure, disappointment, and rejection like losing an election. Those are the risks of taking a leap of faith to live your life of purpose, your because, to answer your why.
One of the people I see making the biggest difference in the world of architecture right now is Michael Riscica and his organization Young Architect. Attending an industry conference where 71.5% of the people are under 35 years old is fairly amazing. There is not talk about needing to add diversity because it is already in the room, attending and presenting, and the space is welcoming and safe for everyone. The sessions being presented are often the first time the presenter has done a training session and they are still top notch. The questions are quality and the chat is crazy active. This is a model of how to build a community that works together for the greater good of an industry, community, and world. I cannot give Michael all the credit as I know Joanna and Destiny are the backbone that makes it happen. This is an amazing community that wants to see other members in the industry find success. I am proud to be part of the YA community and to be recognized for the work I am doing giving back to others.
Michael, Joanna, and Destiny – thank you so much for this recognition. It is very much appreciated. Congratulations to the other YA Award Winners.
For anyone in the industry that wants to do good, here is a great way to do it – sponsor Michael’s work!!!, pay it forward, ask him how you can best support him, show up and mentor others, listen to the young architects in your firm because I am hearing and seeing the future of our industry at this conference and the future is bright (and right now, it is already happening).
Thank you for this beautiful article Charles. I love you man. I’m glad you brought up losing the election.
From my perspective, I believe you won the election and before election day even happened. I love the message it sent about your passion for your community and wanting to be of public service. It was inspiring to watch you go after it.
It would have been cool if you won, but more importantly I think it set a beautiful precedent of “Hey look at this guy who’s stepping up and getting involved politically in his community!” Architecture needs more that. Architecture needs more advocates and people who want do the important work.
Thank you for being a Role Model!