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The Harry F. Cunningham Gold Medal is the highest honor AIA Nebraska can bestow upon an individual and is awarded in recognition of the most distinguished achievement in architecture or service to the profession of Architecture.

The Gold Medal commemorates the achievements of Harry Francis Cunningham who came to Nebraska as lead architect for Bertram Grosvenor Goodhue's office during completion of the tower phase of construction for the State Capitol following Goodhue's death in 1924. It was Goodhue's revolutionary building design which won the nationwide competition in 1920 for the creation of the state house in Lincoln. Cunningham subsequently established the first school of architecture at the University of Nebraska-Lincoln. Below is a a list of past recipients.

Harry F. Cunningham Recipients

2016 Perry Poyner
2015 Robert Ripley, FAIA
2014 Tom Laging, FAIA
2013 Bruce Carpenter, AIA
2012 John (Jack) Schofield Savage, AIA
2011 R. Wayne Drummond, FAIA
2010 Albert Hamersky, AIA
2009 Gary Bowen, FAIA
2008 Neil Astle
2007 John E. Sinclair, AIA
2006 George Haecker, AIA
2005 Robert L. Hanna
2004 Charles Wilscam, AIA
2002 Donald P. Polsky, FAIA
2001 Dale L. Gibbs, FAIA
1999 Deon Bahr, FAIA
1997 W. Cecil Steward, FAIA
1998 Allied Artists of the Nebraska State Capitol
1995 Lawrence Enersen, FAIA, FASLA



Includes an individual, (not necessarily a current resident or an architect, living or deceased) who has not previously received this award, and who the AIA Nebraska Executive Committee believes exemplifies excellence in architecture in the State of Nebraska. Nominees who fail to receive the award after three submissions will not be eligible. One gold medal will be awarded in any given year. However, in some years one may not be awarded.


  • The candidate shall have evidenced a profound effect on the profession of architecture in Nebraska.
  • The candidate shall have influenced the direction of architecture in Nebraska.
  • The candidate's contributions to the profession of architecture have consistently been directed toward the future as well as respectful of the past.
  • The candidate shall have evidenced the ability to excel in a specific area of expertise.
  • The candidate shall be widely known by the quality of his or her skills or services by those who practice architecture and those who do not.


Nominations must be made by an AIA Nebraska member and uploaded to AIA Nebraska's Dropbox by 5 p.m., Thursday, July 27, 2017. It is the responsibility of the nominator to inform the nominee of his/her consideration. AIA Nebraska will only contact the Gold Medal winner.

Nomination Form

Upload Completed Nomination


Information submitted from this nomination will be the materials considered by the jury. In the event of clarification, the jury may ask the nominator for further information.

Nominator Agrees

  • To provide clarification on information per jury request.
  • To compile introductory material (including power point and photographs) for awards presenter.
  • To act as host or obtain a host for the nominee (if selected as winner) at the AIA Nebraska Excellence in Design Event.

If you have nominated an individual in the past and would like them to be reconsidered, please indicate this on the nomination form and the original submission will be used. Updates need to be forwarded to AIA NE by the appropriate date. Additional information may be requested for the jury.


The selection committee may include:

  • President, AIA Nebraska
  • Past Recipient of the Gold Medal
  • Regional Director. AIA Central States
  • Representative, UNL College of Architecture
  • President, Nebraska Arts Council


The awarding of the Cunningham Gold Medal will occur in conjunction with the AIA Nebraska Excellence in Design Program.

2017 AIA Nebraska Excellence in Design
Thursday, October 5, 2017
Gallery 1516
1516 Leavenworth Street, Omaha, NE 68102



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