AIA elections are coming up next week at the 2015 AIA National Convention. Here's the start of your primer:

Campaigns for the AIA's leadership positions are heading into the final stretch; elections take place at the 2015 National Convention, which is right around the corner. Nine AIA members have declared candidacies for offices—three for the 2016 first vice president/2017 president-elect position, one for treasurer, and five for at-large directors. ARCHITECT caught up with all the candidates at AIA’s 2015 Grassroots Leadership and Legislative Conference, in March to discuss their platforms. This post is the first in a series leading up to convention to familiarize voters with the future set of AIA leaders.

The candidates for first vice president/president-elect are: Don Brown, FAIA; Stephen Fiskum, FAIA; and Thomas Vonier, FAIA. The candidate who wins this round takes over as vice-president in January, working with 2016 president Russ Davidson, FAIA, and becomes president in 2017.

Meet the Candidates 
(profiles in their own words)

Don Brown (AIA Montgomery/AIA Alabama)
I’ve held a national chairmanship, a significant committee assignment, or been in an elected leadership position under the last eight AIA presidents. I’ve had responsibility and authority as a chair for the major things that we do: advocacy and knowledge. It’s been rewarding to work with intelligent people doing good things. I’ve learned a great deal and I think I’m prepared to take the next steps on the issues that matter.

Stephen Fiskum (AIA Minneapolis/AIA Minnesota)

Joe Treleven
I’ve been a practitioner for my entire career. I started out in smaller firms and found my way to Alaska early on in my career during a significant recession. I came back home to Minneapolis after five years and found my way to HGA. After I was there for two years, that organization asked me to go to Milwaukee to open up a new branch office. From a cold start, I generated business and clients, and built that office. I was there for 11 years and then returned to Minneapolis to be the chief operating officer of the firm. I served in that capacity for 15 years. I’ve learned to embrace whatever economy we’re working in and embrace the trends we’re seeing, and to move upstream in the process. The way we’re successful is to provide value to clients in new ways and to help them achieve their goals.

Thomas Vonier (AIA Continental Europe)
I was born and raised in Wisconsin and then moved to Washington, D.C., after college. I had my first job there. As soon as I got licensed, I joined AIA. I was ambitious as a young guy and I got on the board of directors for the D.C. chapter. Pretty early on, I developed an appetite for working for AIA professionally. I went to Europe in 1989 through some work opportunities. After having been there for a year, there were quite a number of American architects in Europe and we had no chapter. I started an AIA chapter. Originally, the charter had 28 countries in it. Now, we have 32. I was the founder and first president of that chapter and then helped to establish chapters in the Middle East and in Shanghai. I got elected to the board of directors of AIA, and then as a vice-president. 

Check out all candidate profiles here.