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How do firms succeed in transitioning ownership and leadership? What options are available to a firm founder who is approaching retirement? How can internal transition be made attractive and affordable? How can successors truly leverage the knowledge and connections of the founder? At the Firm Ownership Transition seminar, we will explore these questions and others with case studies and interactive scenarios, including how to manage the risk inherent in change. This highly interactive seminar will include participatory exercises and ample time for questions and knowledge sharing with colleagues.

Intended Audience: Those interested in ownership and leadership transition, especially small firm and mid-size firm practitioners. This is the second of three Sessions for Small Firms offered in 2019.


Prices increased 15% after the early bird deadline on October 14, 2019.

Includes 4 LU, breakfast, coffee + light refreshments

$151 – AIA Members + Government Employees
$93 – Assoc. Members
$265 – Non-Members
$35 – Students + Scholarships

Firm Ownership Transition registration is now full, please join the wait list. We will contact you if spots become available.

Stay tuned for more information about additional Sessions for Small Firms offered in 2019.


  1. Discover the importance of advance planning, setting goals, and understanding preferred outcomes for ownership transition.
  2. Understand options for ownership transition depending on time frame to retirement and openness to sharing leadership and authority.
  3. Learn how to structure the financial aspects of ownership transition to make it attractive and affordable in internal successors.
  4. Explore best practices for identifying the right potential successors and how to create a framework for partnership agreements.


Wednesday, October 23, 2019 | 8:00am – 12:45pm
Pacific Tower, Suite 110 | 1200 12th Ave. S., Seattle, WA 98144

  • 8:00 AM Registration with coffee + light breakfast
  • 8:30 AM Program begins
  • 12:45 PM Program ends


In-person presenter + facilitator:  Rena M. Klein, FAIA is a nationally recognized expert in small firm practice and author of The Architect’s Guide to Small Firm Management. With 20 years of experience as the owner of a small architecture firm, and over 15 years as a consultant and educator, Rena brings a special understanding of design firms managed by entrepreneurial architects. Rena served as executive editor of AIA’s The Architect’s Handbook of Professional Practice, 15th edition and is past-chair of the national Advisory Group for the AIA Practice Management Knowledge Community.

Remote presenter:  Michael Strogoff, FAIA, of Strogoff Consulting, Inc. and aecKnowledge, provides project delivery, practice management, negotiations, strategic marketing, and leadership consulting services. His advice and training is based on his thirteen years as a managing partner of a 40-person architectural firm, fourteen years of management consulting, and his extensive study of business practices. Michael has counseled and worked with over 140 design firms and has provided in-firm training to architects throughout the United States. Through this consulting, he offers seminar participants firsthand knowledge of how a wide variety of architectural firms operate—the good and the bad—and understanding of the challenges the architectural industry faces.

All speakers subject to change.

Registration or Credit Questions?
Contact Zoe Guckenheimer, Program & Project Coordinator at AIA Seattle

Program Questions?
Contact Cassie Blair, Professional Programs Manager at AIA Seattle

Sponsorship Questions?
Contact Kimber Leblicq, Managing Director at AIA Seattle

About the American Institute of Architects – Seattle

AIA Seattle provides the architecture community with resources and relationships to make a difference through design. We open doors, provide connections, keep our members and the public informed, and demonstrate our commitment to great design as the key ingredient for livable, sustainable places.

A chapter of the American Institute of Architects, AIA Seattle is a 501(c)(6) nonprofit, membership service organization. Founded in 1894, AIA Seattle is comprised of over 2,500 architects and allied professionals throughout the Puget Sound region. AIA Seattle membership is open to anyone with a professional or personal interest in architectural practice, and in the creation or appreciation of the built environment.

AIA Seattle is the 5th largest urban component of the American Institute of Architects, with members throughout the Puget Sound area. AIA Seattle is one of four Washington components affiliated with AIA Washington Council, and the AIA Northwest & Pacific Region.

In 2011, AIA Seattle founded Design in Public, a 501(c)(3) nonprofit, to celebrate all the ways that design makes life better for Seattle.

In 2015, AIA Seattle partnered with Seattle Architecture Foundation, Design in Public, and AIA Washington Council to create the Center for Architecture & Design. The Center is Seattle’s premier public space for exhibits, programs, and conversations that explore design’s role in shaping cities. More info at

Image courtesy AIA Seattle.

For more Seattle Design Pup events, click here. To check out Portland Design Pup events, click here.

Event Detail

October 23, 2019 8:00 am
October 23, 2019 12:45 pm
Pacific Tower
1200 12th Ave S Seattle, WA 98144


AIA Seattle
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