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AIA Emerging Professional Award: Patricia Opitz, AIA

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This year’s Emerging Professional Award recipient is Patricia Opitz, AIA, LEED AP. She is a graduate of the University of Arkansas Fay Jones School of Architecture and Design with a bachelor of architecture degree.

As Senior Associate with Polk Stanley Wilcox Architects, Opitz is responsible for project management and coordination in all phases of a project from conception through construction. Her résumé includes projects varying from education, commercial, hospitality and civic. She also possesses considerable experience in residential planning, from new residences to additions and renovations. In addition to project management and design, Opitz also assists in coordinating the firm’s graphic design and marketing efforts, managing the numerous design award submissions submitted each year.

Opitz is a current member of the AIA Arkansas Chapter Board as its Central Section chair. This past year, Opitz has launched two inaugural events for Central Section, “Buildings, Brews, and Rendezvous” and a Baggo Tournament for each section within the state, with a combined attendance of over 120 members. She is also researching and assisting in efforts with others to launch the Diversity and Women in Architecture Committee within the AIA Arkansas chapter. In addition to her involvement with AIA Arkansas, Opitz also volunteers her time with the Architecture + Design Network, sitting on the board as secretary of the organization, and is also a current board member of studioMAIN.

Outside of the architecture community, Opitz is a current member and past board member for the Junior League of Little Rock. Opitz has served and excelled in various capacities of the JLLR, notably as chair of the Construction Committee for the Capital Campaign, which oversaw the third and final phase of an extensive renovation to the Women’s City Club.

In 2014, Opitz was named to Little Rock Soirée’s Women To Watch list, which included 29 local women in central Arkansas making a big impact on business, philanthropy and in the community. In addition to JLLR, Opitz has dedicated her time to various organizations including the American Lung Association, Arkansas Food Bank, Our House, ALA Arkansas Girls State, the Emerging Green Builders and the Family Development Center at 12th Street.

(See more from the AIA Arkansas Design Awards.)

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