KAREN KIRKS ALEXANDER

KKA Architecture, PA

SAY IT LOUD - North Carolina Exhibitor

North Carolina Based Designer

Who or what inspires you professionally?

I am inspired by firm leaders where I worked prior to starting my own firm. My employees over the years who brought diverse perspectives and strengths to every project have also brought inspiration. My travels globally. & AIA design winners.

KAREN KIRKS ALEXANDER

Bio:

Karen Alexander is the founder and President of KKA Architecture, PA. Her projects have been published in numerous national magazines, including a cover of House Beautiful. The Center for the Environment building is the subject of a PBS Documentary, " Environmental Partners". Karen received the AIA-Charlotte Honor Design Award and AIA-Charlotte Merit Award for Sustainable Design or her work the National Design Award from NCMA for the same Project.

 

How did you first learn about architecture and when did you decide that built environment profession was an area of interest for you?

As a child I played with my two brothers' Lincoln Logs and Erector's sets. I also spent time following my father's projects in his hobby workshop. I loved books on architecture and construction and using drafting tools to create drawings.

What do you do?

I am president of my own firm and do preservation, planning and commercial projects. I also am serving my second term as Mayor of the City of Salisbury. I am also the incoming President of NCLM representing 540 Cities across NC.

What excites you in the work you do?

As Mayor, influencing the policies and procedures that create a socially inclusive, diverse, equitable, and efficient government for the citizens of our community. As an architect creating sustainable, efficient, client and site driven projects.

Who or what inspires you professionally?

I am inspired by firm leaders where I worked prior to starting my own firm. My employees over the years who brought diverse perspectives and strengths to every project have also brought inspiration. My travels globally. & AIA design winners.

What is your proudest professional accomplishment or achievement?

My AIA Honor Award and AIA Merit Award for the Center for the Environment and serving as AIA Treasurer, Secretary, VP and finally President of the Charlotte Section in 2001. Also serving on the NC AIA Board. Making the cover of Southern City.

Featured Project Name: 

Center for the Environment at Catawba College

 

Featured Project Location: 

Salisbury, NC

 

Featured Project Completion Date: 

September 2001

Role in Featured Project: 

Architect

 

Featured Project Description:

The Center for the Environment is a 21,000 square foot educational facility that would not only house the program but also be, in itself , an education for the community, the region and for the students, a facility that could stand as a model for how to build with less impact on the Earth's resources both from a construction materials and processes as well as the operational aspect of the solar panels and 40 geothermal wells to heat and cool the building sited adjacent to a 187 acre preserve.

Photography Credit:

Tim Buchman