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Professor Laura Lee has been appointed as the first Design Commissioner for South Australia, four months after she recommended the role be created.
Professor Lee, who had been working as Thinker in Residence in Adelaide, proposed an Integrated Design Commission for South Australia in late 2009. Her proposal suggested that the IDC would act as design advisors to state and local government agencies, giving design thinking a more prominent role in state planning.
South Australia Premier Mike Rann announced the creation of the IDC in December 2009, saying the position would have an enabling and coordinating role, adding that the Commissioner would be supported by a Government Architect.
Professor Lee worked with the South Australian chapter of the Australian Institute of Architects (AIA) on the development of the IDC, and received an honorary fellowship from the AIA in July 2009. The Institute backed the appointment of Lee to the role as Commissioner.
The Design Institute of Australia (DIA) also welcomed last weeks announcement. National President of the DIA, Joanne Cys, said the IDC would have the best possible start under Professor Lees guidance. Laura Lees multi-disciplinary understanding of design will enable the effective operation of the Commission for Integrated Design and allow it to harness the benefits all areas of design can bring to South Australia, said Cys.
Professor Lee is a highly regarded architect and teacher, and is currently Professor of Architecture at the Carnegie Mellon University in Pittsburgh, USA. She will begin her three-year term as Commissioner on 1 July 2010.