The American Institute of Architects (AIA) has elevated SOM Partner Laura Ettelman to its College of Fellows. The distinction recognizes architects who have made significant contributions to the field and society, and who exemplify architectural excellence. Founded in 1952, it is AIA’s highest membership honor. Only three percent of the AIA’s constituents have earned this distinction.
For more than 30 years, Ettelman has demonstrated her expertise in leading large, multidisciplinary teams to deliver some of SOM’s most complex projects. Among her key projects are some of the world’s largest aviation and transportation hubs, including Terminal 1 at Toronto Pearson International Airport, Terminal 2 at Chhatrapati Shivaji International Airport in Mumbai, Terminal 2 and the Multi-Modal Transport Hub at Kempegowda International Airport in Bengaluru, and Moynihan Train Hall in New York City. Additionally, Ettelman’s work ranges from large-scale master plans to interior architecture, including new hospitals and research centers for healthcare and science, and campus master planning and design for both higher education and the civic and government sectors. Currently, Ettelman is leading the New York City Public Health Laboratory, the Montgomery County Justice Center, a new production facility for the Bureau of Engraving and Printing, the MIT Stephen A. Schwarzman College of Computing, and Emory Healthcare Winship at Midtown.
In 2020, Ettelman was elected to SOM’s Executive Committee along with Managing Partners Carrie Byles and Xuan Fu – the first time three women have held the top leadership posts at SOM. As a member of the committee, Ettelman’s responsibilities include long-term strategic decision making, leading SOM’s response to the pandemic, and day-to-day management. She is also an active participant on the firm’s Talent, Equity, Diversity & Development committee, where she is guiding SOM’s efforts to create an ever more equitable workplace environment. With a deep commitment to training the next generation of women architects, Ettelman has served as a mentor to young women at SOM. More than a decade ago, Ettelman helped to restart the SOM Women’s Initiative and has been a leader in the group since 2010.
Beyond SOM, Laura is currently serving on New York City’s Advisory Council in the Construction and Real Estate Sector, which guides and informs the city’s efforts to restart its economy in response to COVID-19.