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Senate Confirms New Architect of Capitol

May 17, 2010

By Tom Ichniowski
This article first appeared on Engineering News-Record

Stephen Ayers, AIA
Stephen Ayers, AIA

Stephen T. Ayers, acting chief of the office of the Architect of the Capitol for the past three years, has been confirmed for a full, 10-year term as the Capitol Architect.

Ayers' Senate confirmation came on May 12 by unanimous consent. President Obama had sent his nomination to the Senate on Feb. 24.

The "AOC" is in charge of maintaining and operating the Capitol building, Library of Congress, Supreme Court and other federal facilities on Capitol Hill.

Ayers, a licensed architect, joined the AOC's office in 1997 and has been its acting head since February 2007, when Alan M. Hantman retired. Ayers also has held the posts of deputy architect and AOC chief operating officer since 2005.

Earlier in his career, Ayers was a general engineer with the Voice Of America, leading construction projects in Europe. Before that, he served as a U.S. Air Force officer, where he was a staff architect and design team leader and managed construction projects.

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The American Institute of Architects praised Ayers' confirmation. George H. Miller, AIA president, said, "For the Senate to confirm Stephen Ayers so quickly and on such a bipartisan basis is itself an endorsement of the profession as well as Mr. Ayers¹ steady hand as he led the Architect of the Capitol¹s office for the last three years."

Ayers holds a bachelor's degree in architecture from the University of Maryland and a master's degree in systems management from the University of Southern California.

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