Taubman honored at AIAS fund-raiser
Wednesday, April 4th, 2012
Shopping mall pioneer and philanthropist A. Alfred Taubman was back on Lawrence Tech’s campus on March 28 to lend his support to the AIAS Freedom by Design fund-raiser and to accept the award as Lawrence Tech’s 2012 Legend of the Year. He also came to share some insights gained during his long business career.
The Lawrence Tech chapter of the American Institute of Architecture Students was raising money primarily for Freedom by Design, a non-profit, student-run organization that allows architecture students to implement design/build solutions to increase accessibility in the home of a client who faces physical challenges.
Attendees of the strolling dinner reception had the opportunity to bid on many great items that had been donated to the cause. After dinner, the guests moved to the auditorium – where they were joined by many students – to hear a dialogue between Taubman and Dean of Architecture and Design Glen LeRoy.
The conversation covered a wide range of topics from the origins of the shopping-mall concept in Italy almost 500 years ago to Taubman’s latest completed project, a shopping mall in Salt Lake City that has a retractable roof.
When LeRoy asked if the retractable roof is the start of a new trend for shopping malls, Taubman’s replay was blunt. “No. It’s too expensive,” he said.
Taubman was introduced by Lawrence Tech alumnus James Ryan, who worked on many of Taubman’s big projects. Former Alumni Association President Michael Zulinski then joined Ryan to present Taubman with the 2012 Legend of the Year Award from the Legends, a group of Lawrence Tech alumni who have been entrepreneurs and promote the entrepreneurial spirit on Lawrence Tech’s campus.