The Association of Collegiate Schools of Architecture (ACSA) announced that Roger Schluntz, professor of architecture and former dean of The University of New Mexico School of Architecture and Planning, will receive the designation of ACSA Distinguished Professor at a formal award ceremony at the ACSA 2017 Annual Meeting, in Detroit in late-March.

The ACSA, which represents all accredited programs in the United States and Canada, in its 30+ years, has only selected135 individuals for membership in the College of Distinguished Professors. The UNM School of Architecture & Planning is among the top six schools with Distinguished Professors on our faculty, past and present.

According to the ACSA website, those receiving this distinction shall have had a positive, stimulating and nurturing influence upon students over an extended period of time, inspiring a generation of students who themselves have contributed to the advancement of architecture. “The designee shall have had significant impact fostering and sustaining excellent teaching and a healthy environment for learning and/or instituted measures leading to an understanding and appreciation of architectural education in the community at large.” 

In his nomination letter, Dean Emeritus Wayne Drummond, FAIA of the University of Nebraska, noted Schluntz’s ethics, academic goals and leadership in education. “These values are clearly reflected through his academic and administrative roles at ASU, Miami and UNM. His leadership raised the academic values and performance of each institution where he has served,” Drummond wrote.

Another nominator, Marilys R. Nepomechie, FAIA, professor and associate dean at the College of Communication, Architecture + The Arts at Florida International University, recognized Schluntz for his “longstanding commitment to excellence,” adding, “…the construction of the award-winning George Pearl Hall, present-day home of the UNM School of Architecture & Planning, was made possible through his tireless efforts and through his advocacy for the transformative power of excellence in design.”

Chris Wilson, J.B. Jackson Chair of Cultural Landscape Studies and Regents Professor in the UNM School of Architecture & Planning, credited Schluntz for his efforts “which have made the school and the profession pivotal to the future of the university and state.” Wilson specifically mentioned design charrettes, workshops and community-engaged studios that resulted in master plans for UNM’s main campus, two of its branches, as well as Albuquerque’s and Rio Rancho’s central business districts. Wilson added, “Recently he and his students helped the university conceive and select the downtown site for a new educational and business incubator center, Innovate ABQ.”

Wilson wrote, “Through his studios, Roger has been the most important voice for the interaction of architecture, urban design and sustainability within the school.”

Prior to coming to the University of New Mexico, Schluntz served as dean of the School of Architecture at the University of Miami (Florida) and as director of the School of Architecture at Arizona State University. He received his professional degree in architecture from the University of Nebraska – Lincoln and his post-profession degree at the University of California – Berkeley. He is a licensed architect and a member of the College of Fellows of the American Institute of Architects, and an appointed member of the International Competitions Commission of the International Union of Architects (UIA, based in Paris). 

Past UNM ACSA Distinguished Professor architecture faculty recipients include Professors Emeriti/ae Don Schlegel, FAIA, George Anselevicius, FAIA, and Anne Taylor, Ph.D., as well as current Dean and Professor Geraldine Forbes Isais.