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Letters of Recommendation

Harrison S. Fraker Jr. FAIA

September 25, 2007

2008 Awards Program
Lifetime Achievement Award
AIA California Council
1303 J Street, Suite 200
Sacramento, CA 95814

Dear AIACC Members of the Jury:

It gives me great pleasure to write a letter of recommendation in support of Peter Dodge’s nomination for a Lifetime Achievement Award, AIACC.  I have known Peter since coming here in 1996 as the new Dean of the College of Environmental Design (CED).  During the intervening years, Peter has been a model, indeed an inspiration, in his service to the profession and professional education.  He justly deserves recognition for his lifetime of achievements.

What is impressive about Peter’s record of accomplishments is that it runs the gamut, from award-winning design, to outstanding firm leadership, to creative and innovative service.  His record of individual design awards is significant by itself, stretching over 40 years; but Peter, in his modest way, has only listed those projects for which he was the lead designer.  If you include all of EHDD’s design awards in which he played an important role, but was not lead designer, the number and significance would be three times greater.  It would be more indicative of Peter’s role in the firm and his contribution to the profession.

While outstanding design is essential to the success of any firm, managing the office, its multiple projects, client relations, marketing, and developing an outstanding staff–in short, developing a winning firm culture–is just as important for long-term success.  EHDD’s selection as the AIA Firm of the Year in 1986 is a tribute to Peter’s extraordinary leadership in this regard.  Peter served as EHDD President from 1979-1985, establishing the firm’s culture which led to the award.

As if this record of achievement is not enough, Peter’s record of service to the profession and professional education should put him over the top.  The listing of Peter’s involvement in AIA California Council and AIA San Francisco steering committees, editorial advisory boards, nominating committees, awards juries, etc., over a 35 year span, is substantial proof of Peter’s outstanding commitment to advancing the aims and goals of the profession.  But it is his involvement in CED with which I am most familiar.  Peter’s involvement goes back to 1989 when he helped create the College of Environmental Design Alumni Association (CEDAA) and where he served as the founding President from 1990-1998.  This small group of alumni was dedicated to supporting the educational mission of the College, advising the Dean and Departments on critical issues, and in general helping to bridge the relationship between education and practice–to bridge the so-called “gap.”  Peter provided untiring and unerring leadership.  The group has helped to create the Distinguished Alumni Awards Program, which honors outstanding alumni at graduation as models for the graduating class.  The group also helped create a mentorship program, which matches every student with a professional mentor who acts as advisor, confidante, portfolio reviewer, potential employer, etc.  The mentorship program involves over 200 practitioners directly in the educational experience of our students.  Both programs have become valued elements in the CED experience.  The CEDAA has helped activate the alumni base and its support for the College.  It has been essential to CED’s long-term strategic plan, and we have Peter to thank for his early and visionary leadership.

Peter’s lifetime record of achievement and service to the profession is overwhelming.  I give him my highest endorsement to receive the Lifetime Achievement Award.

Sincerely,

Harrison S. Fraker Jr., FAIA
Dean and William Wurster Professor
University of California at Berkeley, College of Environmental Design

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EHDD Firm Award 1986
The four partners (left to right), 1986: George Homsey, Joeseph Esherick,
Peter Dodge, Chuck Davis photo by Tia Dodge

 

Betsey Olenick Dougherty, FAIA

September 16, 2007

To: AIA California Council, Awards Jury Members

From: Betsey Olenick Dougherty, FAIA

Re: Peter Dodge, FAIA, AIACC Lifetime Achievement Award

Please accept this letter on behalf of Peter Dodge, FAIA, as a recipient of the AIACC Lifetime Achievement Award. I have had the pleasure of knowing Peter through our respective AIACC careers as well as our mutual commitment to the UC Berkeley College of Environmental Design for more than thirty years.

Peter’s continued devotion to the field of architecture serves as an example to each of us as to how we can focus our lives upon inspiring students and professional alike. He has given years of support and guidance to AIACC committee work and publications, constantly raising the level of discussion and professionalism through his insight and hard work. His gracious manner has eased our way as we have evolved as a professional society. He has never faltered or shied away from controversy, and to my knowledge, has never said “no” when asked to give of himself. In his own practice with Gold medalist Joseph Esherick, FAIA, Peter has established a standard of excellence that the rest of us can only aspire to.

Peter Dodge has served as a role model for me, along with countless others who have been the recipients of his wisdom as a professional volunteer, and educator, and a colleague. Please give Peter’s nomination your most favorable consideration.

Very truly yours,

Betsey Olenick Dougherty, FAIA
Partner
Dougherty + Dougherty Architects, LLP

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Peter Dodge early in his architecture career with Joe Esherick
Peter Dodge early in his career with Joseph Esherick and Associates

 

Ray Kappe, FAIA

September 20, 2007

AIACC
1303 J Street
Sacramento, CA  95814
Re: Lifetime Achievement Award

Dear Members of the Jury:

Peter Dodge has had an exceptional career both as a fine architect and for his outstanding contributions to the architectural and educational communities. I have known Peter through most of his professional years and have been amazed by his involvement in AIACC, the San Francisco Chapter and UC Berkeley.

I was particularly impressed with Peter’s leadership as Chairman of the Editorial Board of Architecture California Magazine. He was dedicated to making it an excellent publication, which he did, and today twenty years later his is still a member of the editorial board of arcCA making sure that communication among architects is at the highest possible level.

Peter was instrumental in the establishment of the College of Environmental Design Alumni Association at UC Berkeley and has worked diligently for almost thirty years leading its activities. He Chaired its Distinguished Alumni Awards Committee which began in 1998. I continue to be impressed by his commitment to the profession of architecture. He has accomplished so much, and he has remained modest in a profession of super egos.

Peter’s body of work, and the prestige of the EHDD firm for which he was a founding principal are well recognized in the architectural world. He and the firm have won numerous awards, many extremely prestigious. Very few architects have had a proclamation dedicating a day in their honor by their city.

The California Council should be proud to add its Lifetime Achievement Award to this outstanding individual who has given so much to his profession, his university, and the community.

Sincerely,
Ray Kappe, FAIA
Kappe Architects/Planners

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Peter Dodge -- 50 Years of Dedication
Peter Dodge celebrating 50 years of dedication to EHDD and architecture

 

Edmund W. Ong, FAIA

Edmund W. Ong
Architecture and Planning

September 26, 2007

AIA California Council
Members of the Jury
1303 J Street, Suite 200
Sacramento, CA 95814

Dear Members of the Jury:

I am deeply honored to write this letter of support for the nomination of Peter H. Dodge FAIA for the AIACC Lifetime Achievement Award for Distinguished Service.  I have known Peter for over forty years and I can attest that, in every aspect of his professional career, he has distinguished himself. Peter’s exemplary career is a model for the profession.

First as an Associate of the firm of Joseph Esherick and Associates, then a founding principal of EHDD, he was an essential member that contributed to the success of the firm.  He had major responsibility for the Cary and Bermak houses, two seminal projects that charted a new and fruitful direction in the evolution of the Bay Area regional style.  His considerable design skills are further evidenced with the many award-winning projects for which he was Principal, including RAB Motors as well as his sensitive and seamless expansion of the Mills College campus.  Peter subsequently brought to bear his considerable expansive managerial and organizational vision to the firm. This is evidenced during his tenure as President of the Corporation, with recognition by the AIACC in 1980 with the Firm Award and then in 1986 with receipt of the national AIA Firm of the Year Award.  The skills that he so adroitly displayed to the betterment of EHDD continue to this day, both in his independent work and in his role as Consulting Founding Principal.

Peter, however, also has and continues to contribute his varied abilities to furthering the interests of the AIA.  Although to numerous to enumerate in detail, some of the highlights include his serving as a member of various design juries across the country, the AIASF fellowship nominating committees, and the AIACC Desert Practice steering committee.  He also was a Director and then Vice President and President of the Northern California Chapter of the AIA, predecessor to AIASF.  He served as a Director and then Chair of the Editorial Board of Architecture California magazine and is currently a member of the Editorial Board of arcCA, the journal of the AIACC.

Peter was instrumental in founding the University of California Berkeley College of Environmental Design Association, an organization devoted to an enhanced funding and heightened presence for the school.  He became its first president as well as Chair of its Distinguished Alumni Awards program, created to give recognition to outstanding achievers in the various design professions.

It is my fervent belief that on the strength his outstanding contributions to the improvement of the built environment and his magnanimous contributions to furthering the aims and goals of the profession of architecture and the AIA in California, Peter is most deserving of this award.

Sincerely,
Edmund W. Ong, FAIA

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Peter and Jan Dodge celebrating with the AIA
Jan and Peter Dodge at the AIA Convocation Dinner, Los Angeles, California, 2006

 

Elizabeth Burwell

September 24, 2007

AIA California Council
Attention: AIACC Member of the Jury
1303 J Street
Sacramento, CA  95814

Dear Members of the Jury:

I am delighted to write on behalf of Peter Dodge in support of his nomination for the AIA California Council Lifetime Achievement Award. I have known Mr. Dodge for 25 years in my various capacities at Mills College, as campus planner, facilities manager and, for the last five years, as vice president for finance and administration and treasurer, with responsibility for facilities design and development and for physical campus strategic planning.

For the past 25 years, Mr. Dodge has been the inspiration and guiding force behind the design and development of the Mills College campus, its building and facilities. Throughout this process, Mr. Dodge has provided masterful leadership to the campus community and College Trustees for historic renovations, development of new facilities for educational purposes (social sciences, computer science, fine arts, music and performing arts, natural science, early childhood education, libraries) and wisdom and expertise in creating multiple master plans for campus facilities, including an athletics complex, housing and food facilities, a multifaceted student center, and a centrally located campus plaza which brings together seamlessly the old and the new.

Mr. Dodge has acted not only as primary architect but also as facilitator of the design process with the stakeholders (faculty, staff, students, alumnae, donors, trustees) who have differing visions (or no vision) for campus projects. With patience and a generosity of spirit, he manages to bring stakeholder to consensus and to arrive at conclusions which provide optimal and extraordinary benefit to the community.

Beyond his extraordinary architectural skills, he has been the touchstone for what is the right thing to do, whether it is building to earthquake and LEED standard or resolving contractor/client disputes. In all cases, the parties agree hat Mr. Dodge represents the highest level of ethics.

I cannot imagine a candidate more deserving of this honor, and I am so pleased to add my support to his nomination.

With regards,
Elizabeth Burwell
Former Vice President for Finance and Administration and Treasurer
(recently retired on May 15, 2007)
Mills College

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Mills Hall at Mills College, a restoration project by architect Peter Dodge
The Mills Hall Restoration project and Mills College

 

Carol Shen, FAIA

September 21, 2007

AIACC Members of the Jury
2007 Awards Program
American Institute of Architects, California Council
1303 J Street, Suite 200
Sacramento, CA 95814

RE: Lifetime Achievement Award for Distinguished Service for Peter H. Dodge, FAIA

Dear Members of the Jury:

I am pleased to have this opportunity to recommend Peter Dodge, FAIA, for an AIACC Lifetime Achievement Award for service to the profession. I have admired him, EHDD, and several of his projects over a number of years. Occasionally shortlisted and in pursuit of the same projects, I suspected some of his clients were going through the motions to fulfill an obligatory competitive process because otherwise, they probably would have just given the work to Peter and EHDD – they were a combination that was hard to beat, exemplary of the finest practitioners, designers, and contributors to the built environment in our profession. As a founding principal of one of California’s most outstanding firms, last year Peter was honored for his fifty years of extraordinary practice by several generations of EHDD leadership. Peter is setting a high standard for the meaning of “lifetime achievement” -- more than five decades of distinguished practice and service, and still counting -- as he continues to consult and actively serve numerous professional organizations.

In 2003, I had the opportunity to work closely with and witness Peter in action when I began to serve on the UC Berkeley College of Environmental Design Distinguished Alumni Awards Committee. Peter, as committee chair since the award program’s second year, 1999, coordinated with the dean, faculty and alumni representatives from four departments (planning, architecture, landscape, and the former department of design) to recognize the academic, professional and artistic contributions of CED alumni. He served for two three-year terms, plus agreed to continue a seventh year, as our collaborative leader across all disciplines and a strong advocate for the values of the CED programs. He led and shaped the nomination and selection process in his quiet, effective manner, and even after his leaving, we still seek and rely on his insight, which he generously continues to offer.

From my years as chair of the editorial board of arcCA, I know how important each board member’s experience, values, and contributions can be, and the difference a dedicated and committed person’s participation can make. In my experience, Peter is one of the “best in the business”: his breadth, depth, and excellence in intellect, judgment and service elevate Peter Dodge high above his peers and colleagues in his numerous successful endeavors, from architecture on a diverse range of projects, to public service that includes a long list of AIACC and AIASF committees, boards, conferences, accrediting teams, panels, and juries across the country. I think the Lifetime Achievement Award for Distinguished Service will provide well-deserved recognition of the extraordinary contributions Peter has made, spanning half a century, on behalf of the profession and all the members of the AIA.

Sincerely,
Carol Shen, FAIA
Chair, 2008 AIA Jury of Fellows

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Autohaus Mercedes Benz, designed by Peter Dodge, FAIA, Architect
The Autohaus Mercedes Benz auto dealership in Belmont, California

 

Richard C. Peters, FAIA

From: Richard C. Peters, FAIA
Professor Emeritus of Architecture,
196 First Street East,
Sonoma, California, 95476

September 24, 2007

Re: Peter H. Dodge, FAIA
AIACC Lifetime Achievement Award

Dear AIACC Lifetime Achievement Award Jury,

It is a great honor to endorse the nomination of Peter H. Dodge, FAIA, for the AIACC Lifetime Achievement Award. I have known Peter for over forty five years as an outstanding Architect and leader of our profession. His commitment is exemplified by his untiring efforts to excel and enrich the meaning of architecture and its place in society. His love for our profession is manifested in all his endeavors. One needs only to review his accomplishments to realize the breadth of his experience and dedication to architecture in its broadest sense.
I had the privilege of working with Peter in the Office of Joseph Esherick. FAIA and can attest to his design expertise and professional excellence. His talent and love of architecture is what I have always greatly admired.
Over these many years I have known Peter as a founding Principal of the outstanding firm EHDD/Architecture, and I have enjoyed visiting and admiring the many award winning projects for which he was the Principal in Charge.
The many Awards that have been bestowed on his professional work and his commitment in the leadership of our profession certainly denote that Peter is an exceptional leader and a dedicated professional. His service to our profession is without peer in my estimation. One only has to recognize the professional organizations he has been involved with to understand the immense contribution of time and effort this represents. His Public Service, Teaching and many Lectures speak to the importance that Peter is held as a leader in our profession.
In closing I would like to sincerely express my appreciation for the opportunity of supporting this nomination. I know of no one more deserving of this prestigious award than my dear friend and colleague Peter Dodge.

Sincerely,
Richard C. Peters, FAIA
Professor Emeritus of Architecture,
University of California at Berkeley

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Peter Dodge in his architect costume and with his family in their Burning Man garb
Peter Dodge with his wife, children and grandchildren posing for an article in the
San Francisco Chronicle about Burning Man participants, 2005

 

David Meckel, FAIA

20 September 2007

Achievement Awards Jury
AIA California Chapter
1303 J Street, suite 200
Sacramento, CA  95814

RE: Peter Dodge FAIA | Candidate for Lifetime Achievement Award

To the Jury:

Peter Dodge rocks.

I can say this because over the past 25 years, he has surprised, inspired, assisted, challenged and delighted me and countless others. I want to be Peter Dodge when I grow up.

I’ve known so many cranky bastards in architecture who share Peter’s career trajectory, but not his gift of being a generous and gentle tribal elder. Most people would feel they’ve accomplished their life’s goals with just one of Peter’s many accomplishments. Perhaps being one of four founding principles of the most important regional modernist firm in northern California — as Peter is — would do it. Or, I’ve heard many architects say they would like to leave one good building behind — Peter has many and still continue to design more. Or maybe mentoring a young woman architect to become principal of the firm you founded — as Peter and Joe Esherick did with Jennifer Devlin, AIASF’s president elect — would be enough.

Peter continues to serve on editorial boards, design juries, professional committees and community groups as if he hasn’t earned his stripes yet. He does this with a quiet dignity the rest of us can only aspire to. Yet under this mild mannered persona, like the heart of a rebel, one that just returned from his sixth Burning Man Festival, where he took his entire family (of course).

If you know anything about me, you know that I have a weak spot for very accomplished architects who age gracefully and share their knowledge with the next generations. I think that is the most significant way to leave a legacy in architecture, and peter is the model of how to do this.

I hope you can find a way to celebrate Peter’s special gift to our profession by recognizing him with the Lifetime Achievement Award.

Respectfully,
David Meckel, FAIA
California College of the Arts

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Peter Dodge at Burning Man in 2005
Peter interacting with an art installation at Burning Man, 2005

 

arcCA issue 08.3 Peter Dodge rocks