Talk About It

About 3 years ago: Hilda R.

Congratulations Zaida!

The Search Has Ended: Meet Our New Executive Director

Welcome, Zaida!

We wanted to share the exciting news that Zaida Basora, FAIA has joined us as executive director of AIA Dallas and the Architecture and Design Foundation. Both organizations are in an exciting time, and our goal of connecting architects to the community and the community to architecture were at the heart of our move downtown last year. We believe there is no one better to help us make these connections than Zaida, who is a tireless advocate with boundless energy that will take us to the next level.

For many of you, Zaida needs no introduction. For those who haven't had the pleasure of meeting or working with Zaida yet, her experience in both the public and private sectors, as an architect, client, consultant, and advocate, as well as her engagement and leadership in diverse boards and committees at AIA Dallas, the Texas Society of Architects, AIA National, and other non-profit organizations brings a unique perspective to the role, and a blend of skills and knowledge that will continue to advance the mission of both organizations.

Zaida most recently led the architectural practice for Huitt-Zollars' Dallas office and was sustainability manager for the firm. Prior to that, she spent over two decades at the City of Dallas, primarily as assistant director of public works over facilities. She is a registered architect and sustainability advocate with over 35 years of experience in design, construction, contracting, and public policy. Under her tenure, over $800 million worth of diverse public facility projects were implemented in Dallas. Zaida directed the implementation of the City’s green building program which has been recognized by the U.S. Green Building Council (USGBC) for instituting north Texas’ sustainable sensibility.

An active leader within the community and industry, Zaida’s service includes chair of the USGBC North Texas Chapter, member of the GSA’s Office of High-Performance Green Building's inaugural Advisory Committee, and president of AIA Dallas. In 2019, she served as the Architecture and Design Foundation president, AIA Dallas Fellows Committee co-chair, Texas Architects Committee executive trustee, and as VP of advocacy for the Texas Society of Architects Board of Directors, a role she will continue in 2020. She currently serves as an at-large member of the AIA National Strategic Council and is a member of the AIA National Board's Government Advocacy Committee.

Her work championing green building codes in Dallas has been recognized with a BOAT Award of Excellence, CLIDE Award in public policy, and the CoreNet Global Southwest Chapter and CoreNet Global Sustainability Leadership Awards. She is a past recipient of the Pillar Award and Luna Award as Outstanding Professional of the Year from the Hispanic Contractor's Association. In 2019, Zaida was recognized with the Kessler Lifetime Achievement Award from the Greater Dallas Planning Council. She was elected to the AIA College of Fellows in 2012.

Zaida’s appointment comes after an eight-month nationwide search led by Victory Search Group and leadership from the Chapter and Foundation. We’d like to thank the members of our Search Committee, who have been dedicated to identifying and prioritizing the needs of our organizations to ensure we find the best candidate. Committee members included Ben Crawford, AIA; Briar Glenn, AIA; Maria Gomez, AIA; Cris Jordan, Hon. AIA Dallas; Dan Noble, FAIA; Bruce Rachel, AIA; Krista Nightengale; and Richard Miller, FAIA.

As the 6th largest chapter of the American Institute of Architects, AIA Dallas also joins AIA Orange County as one of only two chapters within the AIA with an AIA Fellow as executive director.

Zaida is responsible for comprehensive leadership of both organizations, and will work alongside both organizations’ staff to enable AIA Dallas and the Architecture and Design Foundation to:

  • enhance the quality of life in the Dallas metropolitan area by promoting excellence in architecture, design, and the built environment; and
  • create positive change in communities throughout the north Texas region by offering public programs that encourage dialogue about the architecture and design industry both locally and internationally.   

Our search committee was looking for an engaging, experienced, respected, and proven executive director to lead two organizations at the center of a growing chapter, city, and region. We believe Zaida Basora is just that leader. She has a robust sphere of influence due to her unique background and history that makes her a huge benefit to our members and community. We look forward to where she takes us!

Please feel free to welcome her to her new role at


Richard Miller, FAIA

2019 AIA Dallas President

Krista Nightengale

2020 Architecture and Design Foundation President