Docomomo US, the leading national organization dedicated to the preservation of Modern architecture, landscapes, and design, announces that its long-standing President and Founder, Theodore H.M. Prudon, FAIA has stepped down and Robert Meckfessel, FAIA has become the organization’s President.
Dr. Prudon, a leading expert on the preservation of modern architecture and a practicing architect in New York City, established the first US chapter of Docomomo 25 years ago. Under his leadership, DocomomoUS has ushered in a new understanding and appreciation for Modern buildings, landscapes and design across the country through a dual commitment to advocacy and education.
During Dr. Prudon’s tenure, DocomomoUS has spearheaded crucial preservation efforts to save the Eero Saarinen designed TWA Terminal at JFK Airport, now the TWA hotel; landmarked the AT&T Building designed by Philip Johnson. The organization has expanded to to employ full-time professional staff and develop a variety of annual educational programming including the National Symposium, the Modernism in America Awards and Tour Day. Today, Docomomo US includes 19 chapters and 6 official friend organizations across the country.
In taking over the Presidency of Docomomo US, Robert (Bob) Meckfessel, FAIA, stated “Docomomo US is forever grateful to Theo Prudon for his vision, his passion, and his guidance as we have thrived and grown, becoming an ever more effective voice for our Modernist heritage.” He continued by saying, “I am delighted that Theo remains on our Board of Directors as an active member, and look forward to continuing to work and collaborate with him.”
Meckfessel is an activist architect and AIA Fellow with more than 40 years of experience in the planning and design of institutional, residential, and commercial projects throughout North America and Asia. Many of these projects have been recognized for innovation and excellence in urban design, architecture, and preservation from professional and industry organizations, including AIA Dallas, Texas Society of Architects, Preservation Texas and Preservation Dallas. He has served in a leadership role of many other organizations involved with the quality and public awareness of the built environment, including the Trinity Park Conservancy, Preservation Dallas, Texas Society of Architects, and AIA Dallas. For Docomomo US, Meckfessel has served as Vice President, President-Elect, and Chapter Relations Chair, assisting in the founding of eight new Chapters, and creating the Friend Category for other mission-aligned preservation organizations.
As Docomomo US continues to grow and strengthen its mission, the organization has recently added two new Directors: Rachel Leibowitz of the Center for Cultural Landscape Preservation at SUNY College of Environmental Science and Forestry and Jesús (Chuy) Barba Bonilla of Page & Turnbull. Docomomo US is spearheading a strategic planning effort in 2022 to confirm its mission and vision for the organization as its leadership changes and the needs and issues it responds to adapt to the changing world and environment.
Docomomo US recognized Theo’s contributions to the organization at its National Symposium, which took place in Philadelphia from May 31-June 5, 2022, and will continue to honor him.