Be the voice for your profession
TxA advocates year-round for the interests of architects, and we have a special opportunity to do so during legislative years in Texas. View our 2023 Legislative Agenda, and see how advocacy issues are elevated through our Advocacy Review Process.
Learn about advocacy & architecture and how you can get involved below, and click here for a printable version of the information below.
As an architect, you are in a unique position to understand problems and offer solutions. As trained critical thinkers you offer a vital voice in delivering messages that impact your communities. Advocacy is not something mysterious that can only be accomplished by a few. Advocacy is simply making your voice heard. Advocacy is sharing your expertise and collaborating with other professionals to make a difference.
Because advocacy is for everyone, we need you. We need your point of view as we navigate ways to achieve the profession’s goals. Whether it be through state legislation, county boards, city councils, county offices, planning commissions, etc., architects have a role to play.
Architects have a duty and professional responsibility to protect the public’s health, safety, and welfare. Advocacy efforts draw attention to important issues or causes by educating decision-makers about the impact of their choices on how people live, work, and play. Policymakers work hard, but they cannot be experts in every possible area in which they have to make decisions. This is where you come in as informed, educated advocates. You have expertise and experience — use those to help solve problems and create better outcomes for communities.
To be involved in advocacy, architects simply need to stand up and talk about policies that fulfill the mission of supporting the creation of safe, beautiful, and sustainable environments. Here are some examples of what you can do as an advocate:
As you can see, lobbying is not on the list, because advocacy does not equal lobbying. Advocacy can be a lot of things, while lobbying is a distinct activity. Lobbying is about attempting to influence specific legislation. Only lobbyists registered through the state, who follow specific guidelines and file ethics reports monthly can officially lobby the legislature on a piece of legislation. But anyone can advocate! You, as a member of TxA, can help share your knowledge and be an incredible influence on legislative outcomes.
Lawmakers and regulators want to hear from their constituents when making decisions. TxA can help you craft messages and engage with lawmakers. Telling your story and sharing your concerns as an architect is meaningful. In addition to talking with legislators, advocacy happens at the state level through state agencies, departments, boards, and commissions. TxA meets and works with these entities regularly. And, as appropriate, we collaborate with other professional organizations who share our concerns.
Director of Government Affairs & Advocacy
Jennifer Briggs, CAE
Laura Sachtleben, AIA
Chair, Government Affairs Steering Committee
Government Relations Consultant
Catherine Callaway, AIA
Vice President, Advocacy