March 18, 2015
by Canadian Architect
The Royal Architectural Institute of Canada (RAIC) has announced that Monica Adair, who has become a leader in New Brunswick through design, education and community service, is the recipient of its 2015 Young Architect Award.
Ms. Adair, 37, is co-founder of Acre Architects in Saint John, New Brunswick. Her teaching posts include a Gerald Sheff Visiting Professorship in Architecture at McGill University in Montreal, where she received the Gerald Sheff Award for part-time teaching. She has also served on the New Brunswick Arts Board and currently sits on the Saint John Waterfront Development Board.
In choosing Adair, the five-member jury cited the consistent quality of her project work, commitment to her hometown and her work in the arts community. They also recognized her teaching, advocacy, and contribution to regional collaboration in Atlantic Canada.
“She has an impressive CV containing significant academic and work experience for a young practitioner,” said the jury.
Adair will receive her award at the RAIC/AAA Festival of Architecture, which takes place in Calgary from June 3 to 6, 2015.
The RAIC Young Architect Award recognizes an architect 40 years or younger for excellence in design, leadership, and service to the profession. The award is intended to inspire other young architects to become licensed and to strive for excellence in their work.
“As the name suggests, the award symbolizes youthfulness and change in the profession,” said RAIC President Sam Oboh, FRAIC. “It goes to a practitioner who brings a fresh perspective to the practice of architecture—and this can range from the ways in which they engage clients to how they manage their offices. Recipients are the leaders of their generation and recognize their responsibility to mentor or inspire their colleagues.”
Ms. Adair holds a Master of Architecture degree from the University of Toronto. Prior to starting Acre Architects in 2010, she worked at Skidmore, Owings & Merrill in New York City and Plant Architect Inc. in Toronto. Most recently, she was at Murdock and Boyd Architects in Saint John where she was Project Architect for a hockey arena that won the Lieutenant Governor’s Award for Excellence in Architecture in New Brunswick.
Acre Architects, which has seven full-time employees, took part in Migrating Landscapes, Canada’s entry at the 2012 Venice Biennale in Architecture. Its projects range from houses, such as the Mackay Apple Orchard on the Kingston Peninsula to public installations such as In Transit in Saint John, and larger projects like Picaroon’s Brewery in Fredericton. They are expanding beyond Canada with the Hekla Hotel in Brooklyn, New York.
Adair was featured on the W Network television series Majumder Manor after the firm won a competition to design a hotel in comedian Shaun Majumder’s hometown of Burlington, Newfoundland.
Co-partners with spouse Stephen Kopp, Adair also works at melding family life and practice. Within their office is a designed space where they can bring their two sons to work. “I’m at an exciting and pivotal time in my career, and being the recipient of the RAIC Young Architect Award strengthens both my ambition, and onus, to do great things in this world,” she said.
The jury was comprised of: Peter Busby, FRAIC, Past Gold Medallist, San-Francisco-based architect; Paule Boutin, AP/FIRAC, Past President of the RAIC and Montreal architect; Tyler Sharp, MRAIC, Past Recipient of the RAIC Young Architect Award and Toronto architect; Siamak Hariri, FRAIC, Toronto architect; and Martin Houle, MIRAC, founder of Kollectif.net and Montreal architect.