Join us for Best Practice, a virtual fireside chat series dedicated to practice operations at architecture firms and beyond. From pain points to potential, hear how leaders in the architecture and engineering industry are innovating through new business models and managerial techniques.
We’re chatting with Farida Abu-Bakare of Adjaye Associates and Ian Rolston of Decanthropy, Interior Designers of Canada and BAIDA (Black Architects and Interior Designers Association) about how to build communities as an architect.
Farida is a Project Director at the award-winning architectural and design firm; Adjaye Associates. Prior to, she lived and worked throughout Canada and the United States with architecture, engineering, and planning firm HOK to build an extensive portfolio. Farida uses architecture and design as tools to support and empower the communities she lives within. She is the emeritus Community Affairs Director of Atlanta’s NOMA Chapter, a National Organization of Minority Architects, whose mission is to champion diversity within the design profession. Her work with NOMA led her to co-found and chair BAIDA, Black Architects and Interior Designers Association, a Canadian non-profit organization which promotes diversity, equity, and inclusion in the profession of architecture and interior design in 2019.
Farida is also passionate about contributing to the future of the profession in Canada and serves on the provincial self-governing body, the Ontario Association of Architects (OAA) as an elected OAA Council member on a three-year term (2021-2023). She is an OAA Trustee, the Chair of the OAA Interns Committee and serves on the OAA Communications Committee, and OAA Comprehensive Education Committee.
Ian Rolston is a creative soul, inspired by connecting humanity to what matters most. As a design director, principal, thought leader and speaker, Rolston has worked with transformative firms in Canada and in the US across multiple sectors such as Hospitality, Education, Transportation, Retail, Corporate and Residential. Rolston has collaborated with leaders of industry across 3 continents. Firms include; Yabu Pushelberg, Hirsch Bedner Associates and HOK. Renowned companies include; Marriott, Hyatt, Mandarin Oriental, Starbucks, Rogers, TD, RBC and Wynn Developments, to name a few.
Now collaborating with Decanthropy, a platform for new thinking in the inclusive design space, Rolston develops content that transforms the creative process for people, organizations and businesses. As “Lead Decanthropist”, Rolston helps leadership teams innovate with clarity, passion and consideration to distinguish collaborators’ spaces in the marketplace.
A native of Toronto, Canada, of Bajan heritage and an Ontario College of Art and Design Alum, Rolston is most at home where various perspectives intersect. His international travel, love of learning and people inform his affinity for intuitive leadership. Rolston is passionate about compelling stories, architectural discipline, and innovation. His personal mandate is to inspire and support collaborators to create solutions that make a difference.