Michael Graves Appointed to U.S. Access Board

Graves was appointed by President Obama to directly represent people with disabilities.

WASHINGTON, D.C.—President Barack Obama recently named Michael Graves, FAIA, of Princeton, N.J. to the U.S. Access Board.

Graves is the founding principal of Michael Graves & Associates, an architecture and design firm that he founded in 1964, and of Michael Graves Design Group. He is also the Robert Schirmer Professor of Architecture, Emeritus at Princeton University, where he taught for nearly 40 years. Graves has received a number of awards, including the Richard H. Driehaus Prize at the University of Notre Dame (2012), the AIA/ACSA Topaz Medal (2010), the AIA Gold Medal (2001), and the National Medal of Arts (1999), and was named one of the Top 25 Most Influential People in Healthcare Design by the Center for Health Design in 2010.

WATCH: Michael Graves talks healthcare spaces in the I&S Media Center

The Access Board is an independent federal agency that provides leadership in accessible design under the Americans with Disabilities Act (ADA) and other laws. Its governing board is structured to function as a coordinating body among federal agencies and to directly represent the public, particularly people with disabilities. The board also develops and maintains design criteria for the built environment, transit vehicles, telecommunications equipment, and for electronic and information technology. The board is comprised of 13 members from the public appointed by the president and representatives from 12 federal departments.

“I am honored to have been appointed to the United States Access Board by President Obama,” Graves says. “When I became paralyzed, I realized that as an architect and designer, and then a patient, I had a unique perspective. As a result, I became passionate about using this perspective to improve healthcare and accessibility through design projects. Now, as a member of the Access Board, I expect to provide national leadership on accessible design, and hope I can contribute on a grand scale. I look forward to working with my colleagues on the board in pursuit of this important mission.”

Graves will be the second architect on the board, following Karen L. Braitmayer, FAIA of Studio Pacifica, Ltd., an architectural consulting firm focused on accessibility and accessible design.