Panels are free and open to the public as an outreach of the Dallas Architecture Forum. Complimentary beverages at 6:15 pm, Panel discussions begin at 6:30 pm. Panels last approximately one hour fifteen minutes.

Catherine Cuellar

Catherine CUELLAR

27 October 2014  
Tuesday, 6:30pm, Informal reception at 6:15pm
Dallas Center for Architecture, 1909 Woodall Rodgers Freeway, Suite 100


Amy Gibson Tharp, President of Uptown Dallas
Brady Redwine, Vice-President, Texas Central Partners (High Speed Rail)
David Ehrlicher, Vice President, DART

With 1,400 professionals converging for their annual Railñvolution conference in Dallas and the U.S. Federal government’s finalization of the Dallas to Houston bullet train corridor, this panel’s topic about integrated transit systems of various speeds and the impact on living in metropolitan areas is timely. There will an exploration of ‘fast’ transportation or the bullet train, ‘medium’ speed or the DART system which is the longest light rail system in the country, and ‘slow’ or the expansion of the trolley system.
About the Moderator:  Catherine Cuellar is the Director of Entrepreneurs For North Texas (EFNT) at the Communities Foundation of Texas. EFNT helps executives become philanthropists by aligning their in-kind donations, employee volunteerism, and sponsorship opportunities to enhance their brands. Previously, she served as CEO of the Dallas Arts District and spent two decades as an award-winning multimedia journalist for NPR national public radio stations and programs, Sojourners magazine and The Dallas Morning News among others.

Mark Lamster


26 January 2016
Tuesday, 6:30pm, Check-In starts at 6 pm (No reception)

Venue: Hall of State, Fair Park
In Partnership with Festival of Ideas and UTA CAPPA


Advance Reservations Requested for this Panel.

How can Dallas transform Fair Park, a magnificent but underperforming amenity, into a year-round destination and economic engine for its South Dallas environs? The city is now faced with several options for its redevelopment, and must choose the best path forward. In conjunction with the Dallas Festival of Ideas, this program, moderated by Dallas Morning News architecture critic Mark Lamster, brings together thought leaders, decision makers, and community members to address this critical issue for the city. 

About the Moderator
Mark Lamster is the award-winning architecture critic of The Dallas Morning News and a professor in the College of Architecture Planning and Public Affairs (CAPPA) at the University of Texas at Arlington. He is the author of numerous books, and is currently at work on a biography of the late architect Philip Johnson.

Walt Humann, Sr. - Prominent Dallas Businessman and Public Servant
Virginia McAlester - Architectural Historian and Preservationist
Vicki Meek - Manager, South Dallas Cultural Center
Alan Walne - Past Chair, State Fair of Texas Board of Directors
Don Williams - Chairman Emeritus of Trammell Crow Co. and Philanthropist

Bob Harris


9 February 2016
Tuesday, 6:30pm, Informal reception at 6:15pm
Venue: DCFA, 1909 Woodall Rogers Fwy., Suite 100

Why do Millennials care more about design that fosters social responsibility and less about ego in architecture and design? In the last five years there has been a groundswell in the interest of Millennials to participate in design that bridges boundaries among disciplines, demographics and neighborhoods.  Largely rooted in urbanism and healthy living, this generation will discuss and debate the idea that socially responsible design is an attitude that emphasizes needs and experiences of people over concerns of form or aesthetics.  Issues that will be examined include: Isn't social responsibility in design part of the triple bottom line foundation of sustainability? and Is it possible to have a profitable practice that engages social initiatives?

About the Moderator: Bob Harris, FAIA, LEED Fellow
Bob Harris is a Partner and leads the Eco-Conservation studio for Lake | Flato Architects in San Antonio, Texas. He has more than 20 years of project experience combining award-winning design with sustainable solutions. His passion for environmental issues ranges from land preservation advocacy to sustainable urban design. As a persistent innovator, Bob seeks to push sustainability in new directions, finding beauty in solutions and regionally-based designs that elegantly do more with less. His work includes the popular Hotel San José in Austin, TX; Naples Botanical Garden Visitor Center in Florida; and the Dixon Water Foundation Josey Pavilion - a project aspiring to be the first Living Building Challenge certified project in Texas.
Bob’s work reflects his belief that sustainability and design are two sides of the same coin – balanced, integrated, and inseparable. As Lake | Flato’s partner in charge of sustainability he oversees innovative design strategies for the firm. Bob is an innovator who pushes sustainability in new directions, finding beauty in sustainable solutions and pioneering regionally based designs for buildings that elegantly do more with less. As a project leader and designer with over 20 years of experience, his work has received national recognition for sustainable design, including 8 AIA Committee on the Environment Top Ten Green projects under his leadership.

Isaac Cohen-Public Designer, bcWORKSHOP
Allison Baker-Project Leader, Studio Outside
Amanda Kalescky-Senior Project Coordinator at GFF, Inc.

Bob Meckfessel


8 March 2016
Tuesday, 6:30pm, Informal reception at 6:15pm

Venue: DCFA, 1909 Woodall Rogers Fwy., Ste. 100
In Collaboration with Preservation Dallas 

Dallas is experiencing phenomenal inner city growth, unlike any time period before. This urban infill is “remaking the city” on every front and opening up new opportunities that many never could have envisioned. Will the infill of the inner city Dallas be a good or bad thing? Largely underway, we are seeing simultaneous infill in Oak Cliff, the Trinity River Corridor, Deep Ellum, Ross Avenue, the Design District and multiple urban neighborhoods at all scales and types. Housing, retail, restaurants, office and streetscape—what are the traits that make good infill and connectivity to community?  This promises to be a lively discussion with on the front line developers as well as designers of these spaces. Sometimes risky, sometimes opportunistic, the future fabric of our city for the next 50 years is being made NOW.

About the Moderator: Bob Meckfessel, FAIA
Robert (Bob) Meckfessel, FAIA, brings over 30 years of experience in the planning and design of institutional, residential, and commercial projects throughout North America, Europe, and Asia. Many of these projects have been recognized for innovation and excellence in urban design, architecture, sustainability, and preservation from professional and industry organizations, including AIA Dallas, NCTCOG, the Texas Society of Architects, Preservation Dallas, and Preservation Texas. He has served as President of leading organizations involved with the quality of the built environment, including the Dallas Architecture Forum, Preservation Dallas, LaReunion TX, and AIA Dallas. He currently serves on the boards of La Reunion, the Trinity Trust, the Trinity Commons Foundation, DoCoMoMo US, the Greater Dallas Planning Council and the Advisory Board of the Dallas Architecture Forum. He lectures often at professional events, political forums, and educational venues.

Edwin Cabannis; Owner, Kessler Theater
Katherine Seale; Chair of the City of Dallas Landmark Commission and Past Director, Preservation Dallas
Evan Sheets; Senior Urban Designer, Dallas City Design Studio
Dan Shipley, FAIA; Founder and Principal, Shipley Architects

Nan Ellin


22 March 2016
Tuesday, 6:30pm, Informal reception at 6:15pm

Venue: DCFA, 1909 Woodall Rogers Fwy., Ste. 100

As our cities continue to grow, we have seen various responses that ask us to consider a return to a simpler way of life: the small and tiny house movement, eco-villages, co-housing, pocket neighborhoods and more. These all incorporate shared amenities and social spaces, encouraging human interaction in order to nourish a deep sense of community. Advantages also include a smaller footprint and fewer wasted resources. This panel of residents, architects, and developers of such projects will explore their successes as well as opportunities for the future.

Don Gatzke


19 April 2016
Tuesday, 6:30pm, Informal reception at 6:15pm
Venue: DCFA, 1909 Woodall Rogers Fwy., Ste. 100 

In recent years, various forms of urban agriculture have been used across the country as the core of community stabilization and development, with a strong emphasis on improving the public health of neighborhood residents.  In Dallas, these urban farms include Paul Quinn College’s initiative called “We Over Me Urban Farm” and “Bonton Farms” in South Dallas, plus a number of businesses and organizations that produce and distribute locally grown produce. Representatives of several urban agriculture projects in Dallas will discuss the objectives and impact of their projects on the overall goal of reintroducing nature and green space and solving the ‘food desert’ dilemma in urban areas.

Jeff Whittington


10 May 2016
Tuesday, 6:30pm, Informal reception at 6:15pm
Venue: DCFA, 1909 Woodall Rogers Fwy., Ste. 100

As Dallas continues to mature and it enters the next stage of civic life, we will witness transformation marked by progressive urban, cultural and architectural changes. However, progress is never far from growing pains as exemplified by the recent Supreme Court decision regarding Texas Department of Housing and Community Affairs v. The Inclusive Communities Project, Inc. This case rendered Texas’ current affordable and low-income housing tax credit allocation unconstitutional, and its subsequent decision has forced many developers to re-consider their development strategies and will have architects re-examining what neighborhood context looks like. This Supreme Court decision will impact our definition of neighborhoods in Dallas, and it can give birth to a vibrant and exciting phase of our city’s growth if we allow it to. This panel discussion will explore all of those possibilities, and how what may be viewed as a setback might invigorate the neighborhoods of our city. 

Rev. Gerald Britt; Vice President of External Affairs - City Square
Scott Griggs; Dallas City Councilmember - District 1
Maria Martinez-Cosio, PhD.; Associate Professor, Office of the Vice Provost - The University of Texas at Arlington
Shima Hamidi; Assistant Professor of Planning - The University of Texas at Arlington

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