I Am AIA:
Michelle Yates AIAExpand
Michelle is an architect practicing at Bassetti Architects focusing on K-12 school design. As a Co-Chair of the AIA Seattle Women in Design Committee and a member of the JE:DI Task Force, she is interested in facilitating pathways for more equitable access to the architecture and design professions. Outside of her work she enjoys exploring the Seattle area on her bicycle and birdwatching.
WHY DID YOU JOIN AIA SEATTLE?
I was introduced to AIA Seattle through the Young Architects Forum (YAF) and Women in Design Committees while in graduate school at the University of Washington. Like many students, I was lured in by the YAF happy hours and was excited to find a like-minded, welcoming community of young designers. Through these committees I contributed to several installations for the Seattle Design Festival, delighted by the energy and celebration of design by the public and for the public. The Women in Design committee offered a supportive network of inspiring women who served as mentors for me while transitioning from school to the profession.
WHAT IS THE VALUE OF AIA TO YOU?
AIA provides a space for a community of designers to share resources and collectively tackle large questions that are bigger than any individual practitioner or firm.
WHAT RELATIONSHIPS HAVE YOU CREATED?
Through participation in several AIA committees, I have met and worked with many thoughtful design professionals including architects, lighting designers, and engineers. I value the diversity of perspectives brought by the range of members invested in our community.
WHAT PROJECT ARE YOU WORKING ON NOW?
I am working on the renovation and addition of Lindbergh High School in Renton.
HOW DO YOU EXPLAIN WHAT YOU DO FOR A LIVING?
I ask lots of questions and collaboratively evaluate design solutions to create the best possible built environment.
WHAT INSPIRED YOU TODAY?
After working on a high school for nearly five years, it opened its doors to students this in September. It is hugely inspiring to see students engaging and learning in the space that I helped shape.