August 9, 2023

College of Distinguished Professors August Newsletter

A Letter from the Past Chancellor

Dear ACSA Community:

As a member of the Executive Committee of the ACSA College of Distinguished Professors (College) and as Past Chancellor, I am delighted to welcome Marleen Kay Davis, DPACSA, FAIA as the 2023-2024 Chancellor of the ACSA College of Distinguished Professors; Professor Marilys Nepomechie, DPACSA, FAIA as Vice Chancellor; and Professor Thomas Fisher, DPACSA, as Secretary. A list of all members as well as a roster of the past officers and links to the work of the distinguished professors can be found at the College website.

Since its inception in 2010, the College has undertaken initiatives to advance the mission of the ACSA through the Best Paper and Best Project awards at the Annual Meetings, and instituted a travel grants program intended to support emerging faculty who are from historically marginalized backgrounds—specifically, Black, native/indigenous, and Latinx faculty, as well as LGBTQ+ faculty and faculty teaching at institutions identified as Historically Black Colleges and Universities (HBCU) and Hispanic Serving Institutions (HSI).

As these programs mature, the Executive Committee turned its sights on the College itself, looking for ways to continue to champion opportunities for vital connections between our distinguished professors and the larger ACSA membership.  To that end, we have launched a new program: “Leadership/Mentorship Conversations with the Distinguished Professors.” These short video dialogues between two members of the College on topics such as “Why Lead?” or “Foresight, Insight, Oversight..” These conversations will start to be available soon on Instagram and on the website, so stay connected.

This year, with the help of the ACSA staff, we updated our website: introducing the Chancellor and our Executive Committee, making sure the history of officers and members was accessible, and highlighting our supported programs. We also instituted a monthly newsletter. You will find links to those newsletters on the website and they appear in the Friday Update you all receive from ACSA. Finally, we have expanded the opportunities for giving to the College on our Donations page – always ready to receive your generous gift to support the initiatives mentioned above.

Looking forward, we hope to foster more opportunities for our emerging scholars to collaborate with our Distinguished Professors as possible co-moderators of panels and sessions at ACSA conferences. Such opportunities for learning and exchange between generations of scholars can only be beneficial to all.

We have had a good year and, for all of you who have joined us for our quarterly “happy hours,” we hope you will stay engaged with the College as we strive to continue to “distinguish” ourselves. I would like to thank the ACSA Board of Directors and staff for their continued support for the College as a crucial part of ACSA’s community.

We welcome you to reach out to the members of the Executive Committee and the members of the College with any ideas and questions that help advance the mission of ACSA and the College to best serve all members of our academic community.


Patricia Belton Oliver, DPACSA, FAIA
Past Chancellor, ACSA College of Distinguished Professors
Dean, Gerald D. Hines College of Architecture and Design