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Accessibility Expert Janis Kent elected to AIA’s Prestigious College of Fellows

Long Beach, California – February 2, 2015 – The 2015 Jury of Fellows from the American Institute of Architects (AIA) has elected Janis Kent to its esteemed College of Fellows. Ms Kent will be elevated at the Investiture Ceremony at the Ebenezer Baptist Church this May during the 2015 National AIA Convention in Atlanta, Georgia. A national and global leader in Accessible Design, Ms. Kent has pioneered barrier-free design and the broader implementation by thousands of architects of Accessible environments, through her presentations, prolific writing, teaching, regulatory advocacy, and consulting.

The AIA Fellowship program was developed to elevate those architects who have made a significant contribution to architecture and society and who have achieved a standard of excellence in the profession. Election to Fellowship not only recognizes the achievements of the architect as an individual, but also honors before the public and the profession a model architect who has made significant contributions to architecture and society on a national level.

A licensed California Architect for over 30 years, Janis Kent has been involved with Access in the built environment since the beginning of her practice. Ms. Kent is the Founding President of the Certified Access Specialist Institute (CASI), a designated Subject Matter Expert (SME) by the California Division of the State Architect, a Certified Access Specialist (CASp), and serves on the committee to develop the California state CASp exams. This last year she was recognized for her contribution in Access by the California Commission on Disability Access (CCDA).

As a frequent writer and speaker on the subject of Accessibility, Ms Kent has made presentations on Accessibility at numerous venues from Dwell On Design in Los Angeles, to Design DC in Washington, to the National AIA Conventions in Chicago, New Orleans, and upcoming in Atlanta. She conducts seminars for the Nevada State Board of Architecture, Interior Design, and Residential Design; and has presented to business associations including numerous AIA Chapters, Chambers of Commerce, the US Institute for Theatre Technology (USITT), Manufactured Housing Educational Trust (MHET), California Public Parking Association (CPPA), the Los Angeles Housing + CID, and the Los Angeles County Office of Education.

Her most recent book is the Second Edition of Stepping Through Accessible Details. Richard Halloran, Secretary of the San Francisco Access Appeals Commission, described the book as “The most comprehensive and thorough compilation of accessibility information I have encountered.”

“Her illumination of accessibility regulations honors the entire architectural profession and benefits us all, as we continue to embrace the integration of barrier-free design into a thoughtful built environment.”

Edward K Takahashi, FAIA, CCS

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“I have always enjoyed and been highly interested in your publications and seminars over the years. Your publications are required reading by all my staff and are a given contribution to the success of our designs.”

– Craig R. Smith AIA, CRSA Architecture


“Janis is our go-to person whenever issues requiring interpretation of CBC/ADA arise. She is knowledgable, thorough and being an architect herself helps her better understand the challenges we face implementing the ever more detailed accessibility requirements.”

–Ron Bernhardt, AIA Retail Design Collaborative


I’ve found that the seminars and webinars that Stepping Thru Accessibility offers are the most comprehensive and of the highest quality available. I have always gained very useful and practical information on a wide range of accessibility topics with Janis’s seminars/webinars; highly recommended for anyone with an interest in accessibility.

–Matthew O’Brien, Architect, CASp