Press Room

  • A. Eugene Kohn is the recipient of the Kanter Tritsch Medal.

  • The Regional Plan Association (RPA) Fourth Regional Plan is the inaugural recipient of the Witte-Sakamoto Family Medal.

  • Patrick William Danahy, a second-year MArch student, received the Kanter Tritsch Prize.

  • Amie Patel, a second-year MCP student, received the inaugural Witte-Sakamoto Family Prize.

University of Pennsylvania Stuart Weitzman School of Design to Honor KPF Cofounder A. Eugene Kohn and RPA’s Fourth Regional Plan at October 2019 Gala

Awards Include Student Prizes, Scholarships Recognizing Emerging Talent

Philadelphia—The University of Pennsylvania Stuart Weitzman School of Design has selected KPF cofounder A. Eugene Kohn as the 2019 recipient of the Kanter Tritsch Medal for Excellence in Architecture and Environmental Design, and the Regional Plan Association (RPA) Fourth Regional Plan as the inaugural recipient of the Witte-Sakamoto Family Medal in City and Regional Planning. The honorees, and recipients of two accompanying scholarships for exceptional students, will be recognized at the Stuart Weitzman School of Design Awards gala on Monday, October 21, 2019, at the IAC Building in New York City.

“This is an exciting and challenging time for the allied disciplines in architecture, planning, preservation, landscape architecture and fine arts,” said Fritz Steiner, Dean and Paley Professor of the Stuart Weitzman School of Design. “With these honors, we celebrate the pursuit of beauty and efficiency in today’s cross-disciplinary settings.”

The Kanter Tritsch Medal for Excellence in Architecture and Environmental Design was established in 2017 through a $1.25 million gift from Penn alumna Lori Kanter Tritsch (MArch’85), a member of the Board of Overseers at the Stuart Weitzman School of Design, and her partner and fellow Penn alumnus William P. Lauder, who holds a bachelor of science in economics from the Wharton School and is a Penn Trustee, to honor an under-recognized architect who has changed the course of design history, with a particular focus on the areas of energy conservation, environmental quality, and/or diversity.

“Over four decades, Gene Kohn has led one of the most versatile and productive firms of our time, committed throughout to environmental sustainability and boldly humanistic design,” said Winka Dubbeldam, Miller Professor and Chair in the Department of Architecture. “Just as important, Gene inspires a new generation of leaders in architecture.”

The Witte-Sakamoto Family Medal in City and Regional Planning was established by William Witte (C’73, MCP’75), an alumnus of the Weitzman School and member of the Board of Overseers, and his wife, Keiko Sakamoto, Esq. to recognize a firm, team, or professional for an exemplary plan that advances plan making in at least four of the following areas: social equity, environmental quality, design, public health, mobility, housing affordability, and economic development.

“The scope of the Fourth Regional Plan is just enormous, and the potential impact great, given the range of participants and legacy of previous plans,” said Lisa Servon, Kevin and Erica Penn Presidential Professor and Chair of the Department of City and Regional Planning at the Weitzman School. “The proposals resulting from RPA’s considerable efforts are as admirable as the Plan’s four core values of equity, health, prosperity and sustainability.”

The accompanying student prizes, given annually to continuing students, recognize their exceptional work and support the costs of each student’s final year of study in their respective programs.

The Kanter Tritsch Medal in Energy and Architectural Innovation is accompanied by a Prize for a Master of Architecture candidate entering the final year of study who demonstrates transformational thinking on the built environment and innovation in his or her approach to one or more challenges of energy, ecology, and social equity. The recipient of the second annual Prize, which carries a $50,000 scholarship, is Patrick William Danahy, recognized for work in computation and fabrication within the realm of sympathy and aesthetics. Danahy will apply his studies in the robotics lab under Assistant Professor of Architecture Robert Stuart-Smith and as a graduate assistant to his research abroad in machine learning and aesthetics, applied in his travel to survey French and Belgian Art Nouveau architecture.

Said Danahy of his 2019 Kanter Tritsch Prize, “Receiving the Prize has allowed me to continue this research in the spirit of dedication and commitment of the faculty here at the Penn and the Robotics Lab. I am grateful to have the opportunity to pursue my passion, continuing research within the field of architecture with our supportive professors.”

The Witte-Sakamoto Family Medal in City and Regional Planning is also accompanied by a Prize recognizing an outstanding planning student entering his or her final year in the Master of City and Regional Planning program for innovation and impact in planning. The Prize carries a $50,000 scholarship awarded through a competitive, blind review process by a jury of faculty members and invited practitioners. The recipient of the 2019 Prize is Amie Patel, who is recognized for her studies in Urban Design and how designs can work with the existing community fabric. Patel’s desire to work with local citizens and design with the community in mind reflects her studies and professional work in landscape architecture in Southern California before coming to the Weitzman School to study City and Regional Planning.

Said Patel of her 2019 Witte-Sakamoto Family Prize in City and Regional Planning, “I have always been interested in who would be using the designed spaces we create as planners, urban designers and landscape architects, and how they would affect the larger community. This Prize means a great deal to me as it allows me to continue to focus my work around how people and communities interact with the built environment.”

The Medals and Prizes will be presented at the Stuart Weitzman School of Design Awards gala at 6:00 pm Monday, October 21, 2019, at the IAC Building, 527 West 18th Street, in New York City.

The Kanter Tritsch Prize and Witte-Sakamoto Family Prize build on several initiatives at the Weitzman School to advance design excellence, building performance and resilience. To support the next generation of planners, architects, landscape architects, preservationists, or artists to be educated at the School, contact Jeffrey Snyder, assistant dean for development and alumni relations, at jsnyder2@design.upenn.edu or 215.898.8738.

Media Contact: Jenny Laden, associate director, stewardship and communications, at jladen@design.upenn.edu or 215.746.8323.