AIA Seattle Announces 2019 Fellows

The 2019 Jury of Fellows from the American Institute of Architects elevated two AIA Seattle Members to its prestigious College of Fellows, an honor awarded to Members who have made significant national contributions to the profession.

Ruth Baleiko FAIA

Ruth Baleiko FAIA has over 20 years of experience in creating spaces that change the way people interact. By embracing a variety of typologies within a singular project, she has expanded the way architects design learning, teaching, and working spaces. Her expertise in translating a client’s vision into iconic form and expression has enabled her to bring together both the functional and inspirational aspects of design. In this way, Ruth’s work is on the forefront of adaptability and continues to embody the future through her transformation of typologies for knowledge and discovery, collaboration and creativity, and exploration and research.

Ruth received both her Bachelor of Architecture and Master of Architecture from the University of Illinois at Urbana-Champaign before joining The Miller Hull Partnership in 1999. She was elevated to associate in 2007, principal in 2008, and partner in 2014. As a senior design lead in the office, Ruth has worked on a number of award-winning projects, including Fisher Pavilion, Olympic College Poulsbo Campus, Vancouver Community Library, Odegaard Undergraduate Library at the University of Washington and Renton Library. An advocate for continual improvement and refinement, she has shared her experience and breakthroughs through frequent speaking engagements of various levels around North America. In addition to presenting at conferences and design forums, she has also been a part of many design juries and academic studios.

John Harrison FAIA

John Harrison FAIA, RDI, LEED Fellow leads the Innovation and Sustainability team at Starbucks Coffee Company. He co-authored the Starbucks LEED for Retail Volume Build Program and manages the execution team responsible for sustainable strategies and LEED certifications. With over 1,600 certified stores in 20 different countries/US territories, the program has certified more projects than any other private company in the world and certified stores in more countries than any other retailer, including projects in Europe, the UK, North America, South America, and Asia. In addition to leading the program’s global development, John works directly with teams in China, the U.S., Canada, the UK, India, Japan, Taiwan, the Philippines, Korea, Singapore, and Thailand to certify stores. Prior to joining Starbucks, John spent 13 years at Mithun working with a variety of sustainable retail, commercial, and institutional clients including REI, the IslandWood Environmental Learning Center, and Miraval. He is a nationally and internationally recognized speaker on sustainability at scale. He has led presentations to architects and other building professionals on subjects related to LEED Volume Certification and sustainability for the retail typology at the national AIA convention, multiple Greenbuild conferences, and a variety of other industry events. John is a dedicated environmental advocate serving on the boards of EarthCorps and the Northwest Natural Resource Group and as a member of the AIA COTE Advocacy Task Force.

The work of these Fellows demonstrates the power of architecture to address some of the world’s most pressing sustainability challenges, and to positively affect our daily interactions in learning and working spaces. 

The 2019 Fellows will be honored at an investiture ceremony at the AIA Conference on Architecture in Las Vegas, June 6–8, 2018; and celebrated at the AIA Seattle President’s Dinner on Saturday, June 15.

The Fellowship program was developed to elevate those architects who have made a significant contribution to architecture and society and who have achieved a standard of excellence in the profession. Election to fellowship not only recognizes the achievements of architects as individuals, but also their significant contribution to architecture and society on a national level.

Out of a total AIA membership of over 90,000, there are approximately 3,000 distinguished with the honor of fellowship and honorary fellowship.