20 Under 40 Award

505Design Associate Samantha “Sam” Buell was selected as a recipient of ICSC Centerbuild’s 20 Under 40 awards program, which recognizes young architects and retail industry leaders showing leadership to their firms and communities. Sam exemplifies the characteristics of a true leader, her curiosity and desire to understand the essence of a place is intoxicating to those around her. Sam has been with 505Design for over three years and we wish her heartfelt congratulations on her prestigious award.

Sam Buell goes to Centerbuild

By Sam Buell

It was a real honor and a great experience to attend ICSC CenterBuild 2015 in Phoenix, AZ as a member of this year’s class of ’20 under 40.’ As a ‘newbie’ I was struck by the warmth of other attendees and the relative ease of conversation. Across many disciplines – from developers to fabricators, contractors to architects, there was a real sense of camaraderie and closeness of the conference. With the explicit intent of networking and relationship-building, it seems like ICSC has achieved its goal of reinforcing close working relationships and forming new friendships.

From inspired keynote speakers to casual, yet focused round table conversations, I was impressed by the range of educational opportunities, without an academic ego. Discussions on driverless cars were followed by recommendations on positive psychology, while a forum on construction in the Caribbean was preceded by a presentation on designing Food Halls. The warmth and accessibility of this conference, paired with great learning opportunities, made for an environment that I felt comfortable asking questions, approaching the speakers, and making connections with leaders in our field. 

A huge thank-you to the partners of 505design for this excellent opportunity to be introduced to a ICSC, a real force in the Shopping Center industry. I look forward to continued involvement in this outstanding organization.