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NCC Alumnus Named AIA Fellow

Congratulations to Joe Biondo '83!

Spillman Farmer Architects is honored to announce that Principal Joseph N. Biondo has been elevated to a Fellow of the American Institute of Architects (AIA). Joseph N. Biondo '83Biondo is a Northampton Community College (NCC) alumnus. 

Fellowship is the highest honor that can be bestowed upon a member of the AIA. According to the AIA's website, only about three percent of the organization's membership has earned the Fellowship distinction. In addition to being an AIA member, nominees for Fellowship must demonstrate a significant contribution to the profession, the society of architecture, and must exemplify architectural excellence.  

This year, 268 AIA members were nominated and 178 received the honor, including only four honorees from the Commonwealth of Pennsylvania. Biondo is the second person within AIA's Eastern PA Chapter to earn the title of Fellow; the first, also from Spillman Farmer Architects, was Robert A. Spillman in 1997.  

"I am very grateful for this recognition," Biondo said. "This honor would not be possible without the support of my colleagues, clients and many mentors along the way. These folks guided, challenged, pushed and questioned me throughout this exciting journey."  

Biondo joined Spillman Farmer in 2003 and was named a Principal of the firm in 2011. Throughout his 30-year career, Joe's work has been recognized by his peers in the AIA and has been featured in the profession's most prestigious publications. In 2012, The ArtsQuest Center on the Steel Stacks Campus in Bethlehem was awarded a Silver Medal by the Pennsylvania AIA, the highest project-related honor the chapter bestows. This was the third Silver Medal of Biondo's career. In 2009, the Biondo family's residence in Northampton was awarded a Silver Medal. In 2003, Biondo was awarded a Silver Medal for Lafayette College's Williams Visual Arts Building in Easton. Some of Joe's other notable projects include the Lafayette College Ahart Arts Plaza, and the new City Hall and Intermodal Transportation Center, both in Easton Pa.  

In addition to his design excellence, Biondo has also demonstrated a passion for leadership within the industry of architecture. He has worked to advance the profession through his involvement serving as a design juror at many AIA organizations throughout the country and acting as a visiting professor for some of the country's most prestigious programs of architecture. Since 2014, Biondo has served as an instructor at Lafayette College teaching introductory design courses within the Department of Art. Joe's mission in teaching is to provide students with the tools necessary to successfully engage in the dialogue of design, be more curious, and to become active shapers of our built environment.  

"We are so proud to have Joe as an integral part of our Spillman Farmer team," Daniel Harrigan, President at Spillman Farmer Architects, said. "He's a talented architect, but more importantly, he's curious and he's passionate. He is constantly challenging himself, his peers, and his colleagues to explore new possibilities."  

The 2017 jury that selected this year's AIA Fellows was made up of past honorees and includes Mary Katherine Lanzillotta, FAIA of Hartman Cox Architects, Peter Bardwell, FAIA of Bardwell & Associates, Mary Patton Cox, FAIA of Virginia Commonwealth University, Steve Crane, FAIA of VCBO, Marleen Kay Davis, FAIA of the University of Tennessee, David Messersmith, FAIA of the University of Texas, and Karen Nichols, FAIA of Michael Graves & Associates.    

Spillman Farmer Architects is an interdisciplinary practice of design professionals focused on delivering innovative building solutions based on human-centered design.  Since 1927, Spillman Farmer has worked closely with client organizations and communities to deliver high-quality, effective, and inspiring places to live, work, play and learn.  

The firm is led by six principals: Daniel Harrigan, AIA, Frederick Allerton, AIA, Joseph N. Biondo, FAIA, Christa Duelberg-Kraftician, AIA, Russel Pacala, AIA, and Salvatore Verrastro, AIA.  Pacala and Verrastro are also NCC alumni.

Northampton Community College's architecture program provides students with  hands-on experiences where classroom and community intersect.   Students  have produced a plan to renovate a Southside Bethlehem city block, designated for redevelopment; worked with a restaurant owner to redesign a restaurant; collaborated on plans to create a child development center; designed and built a gazebo on the Bethlehem Campus; created plans for the renovation of a Nazareth park; and more.  Students also travel to other municipalities to study those cities' architecture and planning.