December 10, 2020


About the John Dale Award

This award was collectively established after the loss of this year’s AIAVT President, John Dale.

John, a lover of books and friend to many, was also a thoughtful leader and socially responsible member of his community, who donated time to United Way as a volunteer and board member, and to Meals on Wheels, delivering meals to community members in need, during his Friday lunch breaks.

This peer recognition award recognizes an AIAVT member architect who dedicates their time both to the profession and to their community, and who, like John, is a thoughtful leader, and an advocate for diversity and social equity. John’s leadership style was best embodied by the red and black pens he kept on his desk. The black pens were what he used to capture his own thoughts and the red pens were used when collaborating with others. This award acknowledges John Dale and others for using their talent and expertise to contribute to the improvement of their community and the lives of others.

AIA Vermont is pleased to announce that David S. Mentzer, AIA is the inaugural winner of the John Dale Award.

Dave is motivated to use his experience and time to help others through things and always make the path smoother for the next person, and to include everyone fully, in the broadest sense of “community”. Dave Mentzer has been an AIA Vermont appointed NCARB licensing advisor for several years and has been a mentor to emerging professionals in that position. Dave also serves his community as a member of the Ferrisburgh Zoning Board and promotes awareness and inclusion as a member of the Board of Directors of the Champlain Valley Down Syndrome Group (CVDSG). Like John Dale, Dave doesn’t seek recognition for his many years of volunteer service but is using his skills to help people and projects in our community reach their full potential.

There were ten excellent candidates all nominated by peers and the selection of a winner was not easy. As with the formation of the award, the Awards and Scholarship committee consulted John Dale’s family, his wife Amy, son David, and sister Amy, and asked them to help evaluate the top three nominees (the names of the nominees were kept anonymous). Amy Dale shared the following comments on Dave Mentzer’s nomination.

“What struck us about this nominee and gave them a “bit” of an edge, was that they are in the middle of their career, not a partner, working hard at the job whilst sustaining a personal life; yet still, finds time to fit in their charity and community work in the little free time they have. Again, this really rang true to how John spent his years in Vermont.”

Congratulations to Dave Mentzer on receiving this recognition for his selfless dedication to his community and his profession. Dave has chosen Kayla’s Directory, to be the recipient of the $2000 award. It’s a relatively small organization that plans events & programs and provides resource access & information to Vermont families of children with disabilities.