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Welcome to our new SDA Blog which we've called the e-Wire. We hope you enjoy the insights and information that will be shared here by our authors. Be sure to leave a comment and share with others.


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Welcome to Our Newest SDA Members

Posted By Administration, Monday, April 8, 2019
Updated: Monday, April 8, 2019

Please join us in welcoming our newest SDA members:

First Name Last Name Firm Chapter
Erika McClain DLR Group Portland
Kathleen Monaghan Beyer Blinder Belle Architects & Planners, LLP New York
Donna Savely Savely Healthcare Architects, Inc. Orange County
Jenna Selitto Gensler Dallas
Patty Sprecco HBG Design San Diego
Celeste Urrutia Calliston RTKL Dallas


Be sure to connect with our newest members on SocialLink and encourage them to join in our many discussions!

Tags:  SDA  Society for Design Administration 

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SDA National President's Message - March 2019

Posted By Stephanie Kirschner, FSDA, Thursday, March 21, 2019
Updated: Thursday, March 21, 2019


SDA National President, Susan Lankey, CDFA, is back with another update along with a few new faces for her March 2019 message. Be sure to leave a comment in the box below.

Tags:  President's Message  SDA  Society for Design Administration 

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The Power of Storytelling

Posted By Administration, Monday, March 11, 2019
Updated: Tuesday, March 12, 2019

I am waiting for my turn to speak. I take a peek and find most of the audience is blurred.  Intentionally fogged and shadowed in a haze, by my brain. Only one defined space is focused and waiting for me to enter.  The words I’ve gathered try to jumble in my mind, but I’ve rehearsed this speech.  The rhythm of practice corrals these thoughts and brings them into queue. Ready to be shared with the collection of people, waiting to hear my story.

Some time ago, I participated in a lunch presentation about communication. Our speaker was well versed in public speaking and presented part of a series titled, ‘Storytelling Made Simple, Techniques for Becoming a Better Storyteller’, (Steelcase 2017).   While most of us may recall the key elements of a story, our speaker articulately defined the skills and structure of turning a great story into a means to make a sincere exchange with the speaker and audience. By using the components of a great story: beginning (setting), middle (conflict) and end (resolution), we create the framework to share our message and connect with the audience. How you make this connection is a result of preparing, practicing, and presenting. 

In preparation, first, gather information. What do you wish to share, who is your audience, and what matters to them?  Then, create a written outline and focus on concise and relevant information. During your practice, make it a real experience with a friendly group test run. Practice and practice again while noting your posture, tone, and expressions.  Your presentation will launch on a solid foundation as you slow down, take a breath, smile, and stand tall with confidence. 

It is my turn to speak and I step forward. A couple of familiar faces greet me with smiles, and I smile back.  I share a story about my Dad. He recently passed away but is a daily thought in our lives.  With my words, stance, and tone; I convey a lesson my Dad drilled into my sister and me: “It’s broke. Fix it.”  A simple direction barked out with confidence that we were smart and driven enough to find a solution. Despite the harsh delivery, Dad never faltered with enforcing our will and confidence to thrive.  At the end of my Dad’s life, his hospice nurse said, “Vietnam veterans are hard to love.”  This is true.  However, they are also hard not to love.

I end my speech with strained and pinched emotion in my voice. I am not embarrassed, as I hope my narrative breaks the distance between the audience and me.  And that we gained a connection, with my story.

What tools do you use when preparing to tell your story? Share them in the comment box below.



Nikki Pierce, CDFA, LEED AP BD+C is the Administrative Manager for Clark Nexsen in Charlotte, NC

She currently serves as the SDA National Vice-President for the 2018-2019 term.

Tags:  Power of Storytelling  SDA  Society for Design Administration 

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Welcome to Our Newest SDA Members

Posted By Administration, Tuesday, March 5, 2019
Updated: Tuesday, March 5, 2019

Please join us in welcoming our newest SDA members:

First Name Last Name Firm Chapter
Joseph Ferdin MP Studio San Antonio
Tyeanna Graham Cuningham Group Architecture Member-at-Large, Culver City, CA
Kristi Martinez Cuningham Group Architecture Minneapolis/St. Paul
Karla Miller Hollis and Miller Denver
Mandi Parsons Ritter Maher Architects, LLC Baton Rouge
Linne Pullar Gelotte Hommas Drivdahl Architecture Seattle
Jessica Stroberg M.W. Steele Group, Inc. San Diego
Tina Yarbrough L.A. Fuess Partners, Inc. Dallas


Be sure to connect with our newest members on SocialLink and encourage them to join in our many discussions!

Tags:  New Members  SDA  Society for Design Administration 

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Purchase Orders as Contracts – What is the Design Professional to Do?

Posted By Administration, Tuesday, February 19, 2019
Updated: Tuesday, February 19, 2019

Contracts are in virtually all parts of our business.  They take many styles and most often in the form of purchase orders, proposals, consulting services agreements, etc.  However, as noted in the article from Berkley Design Professional, many of these forms are not appropriate for design or other professional services and SHOULD NOT BE USED EXCEPT FOR LIMITED SCOPE PROJECTS. In that event, there are some CLAUSES YOU SHOULD ADD to help reduce risk and address professional liability exposure including Standard of Care, Schedule, Disclaimer of Construction Responsibility, Document Ownership and Indemnification.

Click here to read the entire article.



Special thanks to our guest blogger - Berkley Design Professional.

Berkley Design Professional was started in 2013 by a team of people with deep roots

in underwriting, loss prevention and claims handling for the Design Professional community. 

Tags:  A/E/C Contracts  Berkley Design Professionals  SDA  Society for Design Administration 

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