Keynote Speaker

2018 Keynote Presenter: John Cuningham, FAIA, Founder, Cuningham Group Architecture, Inc. 

A practicing architect since 1962, John Cuningham founded Cuningham Group in 1968. His leadership, foresight and personal attention has helped grow the firm into a recognized leader in the field of architecture, including being awarded the American Institute of Architects – Minnesota Firm Award in 2013. Today as the firm celebrates 50 years in business, Cuningham Group has more than 340 employees and offices in Minneapolis, Los Angeles, Las Vegas, Denver, San Diego, Phoenix, Beijing and Doha. 
While emphasizing the need to produce architecture that reflects the needs and values of clients, John believes good architecture contributes to community life. Creating such architecture requires engaging both the client and the community in a dialogue. “I’m not as interested in the single building as I am in the community,” Cuningham explains. “Being a good architect—doing good architecture—has to do with being in service to society. The kind of architecture that interests me is the kind that builds community.”
John’s community-based approach is further underscored by his personal passion for sustainable design. He continues to advocate creating memorable places that respect the earth—an advocacy he has upheld throughout his professional career and many years before the rise of “green design.”
John has a degree in architecture from the University of Minnesota and a master of architecture from Harvard University. He taught architectural design for 18 years at the University of Minnesota, served on the University’s Alumni Board, and continues to maintain a relationship with the College of Design, where he is a popular guest lecturer.