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Our conversation with Melissa Marsh, Founder & CEO of PLASTARC, will explore emergent trends in how we research and understand experience in architecture. Through a range of lessons learned from the development of her own company model (one that is project-driven and emphasizes flexibility and continuous research and learning) and the curation of the AIANY’s Transforming Architecture Practice Spring Lecture Series, Melissa will engage in a discussion where profit, power, and relevance sit in relation to one’s own skills and capabilities.
Melissa Marsh is Founder and CEO of PLASTARC, a social research, workplace innovation, and real estate strategy firm dedicated to shifting the metrics associated with workplace from 'square feet and inches', to 'occupant satisfaction and performance.' Following the completion of a Masters of Architecture at MIT, Melissa went on to define an early career in workplace innovation with projects in design, architecture and master planning around the world.
Since 2012, Melissa has led the curation of a unique lecture series, sponsored by the Professional Practice Committee, at the AIA NY Center for Architecture. The Transforming Architectural Practice Series explores emerging topics in the management of business in the AEC and design delivery industry including new media, an expanded and diverse number of service offerings, fiscal opportunities and talent management. The series draws on the experiences and successes of individuals in related design and creative professions to meet the needs of mid-career and entrepreneurial professionals who are looking for ideas to grow both established practices and new ventures.
Director of Business Development
As Director of Business Development at STUDIOS Architecture, Sara Francini works closely with firm leadership to identify potential opportunities for new business and to drive and implement firmwide strategy. Sara’s prior experience includes business development and marketing roles within the AEC industry, as well as branding strategy for a leading cultural advertising and design firm. Sara also served as a consultant in Pfizer’s Worldwide Organizational Effectiveness group, providing support for critical business initiatives from strategy development to change management and implementation.
Sara earned a Bachelor of Science from Saint Michael’s College and holds a certificate in Arts Administration from New York University. She is a licensed real estate salesperson and an active Referral Director for the Corcoran Group. Sara is an AIA Associate member and engages with the A/E/C community through CoreNet, SMPS, and the NY Building Congress organizations.
About the Leadership Lunch Meetings
These are one-hour lunch-time gatherings to explore the fundamentals of leadership, the skills necessary to develop our leadership abilities, and the challenges we meet as leaders – at whatever our job level. Our conversations will be peer-to-peer and might include interviews with industry leaders, viewing TED talks, reviewing articles and discussing other sources of information and insight brought to the table.
The lunches are open to all members of SMPS-NY, whatever your job level. The goal of the lunches is to recognize, support and encourage the development of leadership as it manifests at every level of one’s marketing career. It’s a no-charge, brown-bag event so bring your own food and drink.