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Home arrow News arrow Celebrating 100 years of California State Architecture

Celebrating 100 years of California State Architecture PDF Print E-mail
Written by David Karina, Assoc. AIA, RCI, CSI, CDT   

FOR THOSE WHO MAY OR MAY NOT BE AWARE, this year marks the 100th anniversary of the Office of the State Architect.

Since March 11, 1907, the California State Architect’s Office has played a major role in the design, construction and renovation of many historic California buildings that have helped to shape the world's vision of the California Dream.

The Division of the State Architect (DSA) as we know it today was originally established as the Department of Architecture under the Department of Engineering. Its mission was to provide architectural services to state agencies. Before long, the Department found itself engaged in the planning, design, contract administration, construction supervision, restoration, alteration, repair and improvement of all types of State buildings. Hospitals, public schools, colleges, State office buildings, courts, prisons, libraries, bridges and DMV offices all reflect DSA’s legacy that shape the public’s interaction with the buildings around them.

In partnership with other State agencies, DSA has long been a leader in setting standards for excellence.

Current State Architect David Thorman, AIA has introduced many new programs as well as improved many existing programs that have and will continue to enable DSA to carry on in the tradition of excellence for the next 100 years. Among these programs are:

  • Fully electronic services including but not limited to plan submittal & review, project closeout and certification.
  • DSA offices fully revitalized and fully operational with contemporary management processes and procedures based on the principles of a collaborative process.
  • DSA Academy is in place and currently serving the training needs of the State in subject areas such as State policy, codes & regulations as they affect the built environment.
  • Satellite Offices have commenced with operations in Riverside and Fresno.

For the past century, eighteen unique individuals have served as the California State Architect. Each of these extremely talented persons has brought their own individual skills and focus to the Office.

George Sellon (1907-1909)
William Coates, Jr (1909-1911)
John Woollett (1911-1913)
George McDougall (1913-1938, served during enactment of the Field Act)
Wesley Daniels (1938-1940)
Anson Boyd (1940-1962)
Earl Hampton, AIA (1962-1963)
Carl McElvy (1963-1968)
Fred Hummel, FAIA (1968-1973 & 1996-2000, served two terms)
John Worsley, FAIA (1973-1975)
Sim Van Der Ryn, AIA (1975-1978)
Barry Wasserman, FAIA (1978-1983)
Whitson Cox, FAIA (1983-1986)
Michael Bocchicchio, AIA (1986-1989)
Paul Neel, FAIA (1989-1991)
Harry Hallenback, FAIA (1991-1995)
Stephan Castellanos, FAIA (2000-2004
David Thorman, AIA (2005-present)

The California Division of the State Architect may be 100 years old but stick around, they’re just getting started!

For more information please visit http://www.dsa.dgs.ca.gov.

The American Construction Inspectors Association will be continuing the celebration this coming November 9 & 10 at its 47th Annual Symposium where DSA will be presenting updated information relating to the Building Codes, Access Compliance and Inspection along with its incredible traveling wall exhibit. This weekend event is scheduled at the Renaissance Esmeralda Resort & Spa in Indian Wells, CA. For more information and registration instructions please visit http://www.acia.com.

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