John Quale has been appointed director of the architecture program in the University of New Mexico School of Architecture and Planning. Quale, an expert in sustainable and affordable housing, previously served as director of the graduate architecture program at the University of Virginia. He was selected through a national search conducted by SA+P last spring. He started his position at UNM Aug. 1.

Geraldine Forbes Isais, dean UNM School of Architecture and Planning, said, ""The SA•P had three excellent finalists for the architecture director position. John Quale's award-winning portfolio of projects appealed to both students and faculty alike. His former dean at the University of Virginia, assured me that she and the faculty lamented John's leaving, but knew he was excited by the talent and potential he encountered at the University of New Mexico."

Quale replaces Geoff Adams who served as director for the last three years and led the program through successful reaccreditation. Adams is returning to the faculty.

“I'm looking forward to building on the rich tradition of architectural education at UNM, and working closely with faculty to imagine and implement a plan for the next phase of the life of the program. I was drawn here by the many opportunities in New Mexico to allow students explore the relevance of architecture in the 21st century -- especially as they relate to cultural, social and environmental issues," Quale said.

John Quale is an Accredited Professional in LEED Building Design and Construction (LEED AP BD+C), and an Associate in the American Institute of Architects. His expertise is in sustainable design, affordable housing, prefabrication, the environmental impact of construction and collaborative and integrated design processes. 

From 2000 to 2014, he was on faculty at the University of Virginia School of Architecture, most recently serving as director of the graduate architecture program. Prior to that, he spent seven years in New York City working for notable firms, including four years as a project manager for Architecture Research Office (ARO). He also worked for Richard Meier & Partners, William McDonough & Partners, WG Clark Architect and Perkins & Will.  

At UVA, he initiated and served as director of the ecoMOD project. Since 2004, interdisciplinary teams of students -working with faculty, staff and professionals - have designed, built and evaluated eight prefabricated housing units for affordable housing organizations. In ecoREMOD, the sister project to ecoMOD, teams have helped renovate or add to 11 existing housing units for low-income residents.  Of the 19 ecoMOD and ecoREMOD projects, three have achieved the US Green Building Council’s LEED Platinum rating and two have achieved Passive House standard, while working within affordable housing budgets.

Quale was a Fulbright Scholar at the University of Tokyo and the Thomas Jefferson Fellow at Cambridge University Downing College. He is the author of Sustainable, Affordable, Prefab:  the ecoMOD Project, which was included on Dwell Magazine’s 2013 ‘required reading’ list of books in prefab. He is also co-author of OFFSITE:  Constructing a Post-Industrial Future, forthcoming from Routledge in 2016. In 2004, he authored Trojan Goat:  A Self-Sufficient House, about his leadership of the 2002 UVA Solar Decathlon Team for a competition sponsored by the U.S. Department of Energy.  He is also the author of several peer-reviewed articles and essays. His work and/or teaching has been featured on CNN, HGTV, DIY Network, and in various publications including Architect Magazine, Metropolis Magazine, Architectural Record, Dwell, The Washington Post, The New York Times, The Guardian (UK), and Hors Serie: Science et Vie (France).

He has received over 30 design or education awards, including the 2013 Architect Magazine R+D Award, the AIA Education Honor Award, the NCARB Grand Prize, the USGBC Excellence in Green Building Curriculum Award, the ACSA/AIA Housing Design Education Award, and finalist status for the UN World Habitat Award.  In 2010, he was the University of Virginia nominee for Carnegie/CASE U.S. Professor of the Year Award. 

Quale is currently serving in the higher education seat on the U.S. Green Building Council’s Board of Directors. He has given a keynote or invited public lecture at various U.S. and international venues, including the National Building Museum, the Urban Center and universities including Cambridge, Oxford, the Architectural Association, Sheffield, Tokyo, Princeton, Michigan and several others. He served on the international jury for the Masdar Headquarters in Abu Dhabi, UAE; the AIA-COTE Top Ten Green Projects Award; the Modular Building Institute Awards of Distinction; and the New York City “What If?“ Competition.