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Smart(er) Homes and Cities: The Future of Technology in Architecture

May 30, 2020 @ 3:30 pm - 4:45 pm


Monica Ponce de Leon, Professor and Dean of the School of Architecture


Bill Neidig ’70, President, Riverside Interests

Ellen Dunham-Jones ’80 *83, Professor, Georgia Institute of Technology

John Robert DaSilva ’85, Design Principal, Polhemus Savery DaSilva Architects Builders

Lauren Capps Sinkovitz ’10, Project Manager, Sawyer|Berson




Monica Ponce de Leon
Professor and Dean of the School of Architecture

Monica Ponce de Leon is a professor and dean of the School of Architecture at Princeton University and founding principal of MPdL Studio. From 2008 through 2015, she was the dean of Taubman College at the University of Michigan. For over 12 years, Ponce de Leon taught at the Graduate School of Design at Harvard, where she became a professor and served as the Graduate Program coordinator and was director of the Digital Fabrication Lab. Prior to her appointment at Harvard, Ponce de Leon was an assistant professor at Northeastern University. She has been a visiting professor or scholar at various institutions across the United States, including SCI-Arc, Rhode Island School of Design, University of Houston, the University of Miami, as well as Georgia Tech. At Georgia Tech, she was the first Thomas W. Ventulett III Distinguished Chair in Architectural Design. In recognition of her extraordinary contributions in academia, Ponce de Leon received ACADIA’s distinguished teaching award.



Bill Neidig ’70
President, Riverside Interests

William Neidig ’70 is a commercial real estate developer and president of Riverside Interests, Inc., an entity he founded in 1984. Mr. Neidig and Riverside have developed in excess of five million square feet of commercial property in the San Francisco Bay Area and several western states. Many of the firm’s projects were developed jointly with Renco Properties, where Mr. Neidig was a partner from 1985 to 2006.  Riverside’s tenants include technology companies in the medical, computer, automated vehicle and semiconductor industries, as well as retail and office space users. Mr. Neidig is a past director of the Silicon Valley Chapter of the National Association of Industrial and Office Parks, and a former California State Director of the International Council of Shopping Centers. He is a member of the Princeton University School of Engineering and Applied Science Leadership Council, and past chair of the university’s Operations Research and Financial Engineering Department Advisory Council. He was a trustee of Sacred Heart School in Atherton, California for fifteen years, and president of his undergraduate university class for five years. Mr. Neidig has served as a volunteer Emergency Medical Technician and Wildland Fireman. He is a private pilot with multi-engine and instrument ratings and a former member of the Santa Clara County Airports Commission. Mr. Neidig received an M.B.A. degree from the Stanford University Graduate School of Business Administration, and a B.S.E. degree cum laude from Princeton University. Mr. Neidig and his wife, Christy, live in Hillsborough, California.


Ellen Dunham-Jones ’80 *83
Professor, Georgia Institute of Technology 

Professor Ellen Dunham-Jones directs the MS in Urban Design and hosts the “Redesigning Cities” podcast series at the Georgia Institute of Technology. An authority on sustainable suburban redevelopment, she is Architectural Record’s 2018-19 Woman Educator of the year and was recognized in 2017 by Planetizen as one of the 100 most influential urbanists. She is co-author with June Williamson of the award-winning “Retrofitting Suburbia: Urban Design Solutions for Redesigning Suburbs” (Wiley, 2009, 2011) and forthcoming “Retrofitting Suburbia Case Studies: Urban Design Strategies For Urgent Challenges” (Wiley, 2020). Her research and teaching intersect trends in contemporary theory & technology, real estate development—and most recently — urban design for autonomous vehicles. Her work has been featured in The New York Times, TED, PBS and NPR. She serves on several national committees, practiced architecture for 20 years, and taught at UVA and MIT before being recruited to direct the Architecture Program at Georgia Tech in 2000.


John Robert DaSilva ’85
Design Principal, Polhemus Savery DaSilva Architects Builders

John R. DaSilva ’85, FAIA, has been a licensed architect since 1991.  He worked for Venturi Rauch and Scott Brown, and as an Associate at Cesar Pelli and Associates before establishing his own practice in 1998 at Polhemus Savery DaSilva Architects Builders (PSD), an integrated architecture and construction firm based on Cape Cod.  As Design Principal he sets the aesthetic direction and oversees the design work of a firm that designs and builds custom homes and select institutional and resort architecture in coastal Southern New England.  At PSD he has designed nearly 200 new homes, renovations or restorations. In 2017 he was inducted into the New England Design Hall of Fame, recognizing him as one of the top residential architects in New England. In 2019 he became a Fellow of the American Institute of Architects in the design category, an honor bestowed upon less than 1% of all architects.  As an author, DaSilva has written two books and contributed to several others.  Articles by him or about him and his work have appeared widely in regional, national and international publications.  DaSilva’s philanthropic work includes Founding Director of PSD’s charitable fund, former President and long term board member of the Unitarian Universalist Meeting House of Chatham and current Vice President of Provincetown Arts, a non-profit small press devoted to supporting the arts community of Outer Cape Cod.  When he is not working, one might find him absorbed in his Cape Cod art collection, his worldwide stamp collection or his architecture book library.  He might also be jazz or rock drumming or bicycling with his wife and daughter on Cape Cod or Martha’s Vineyard.


Lauren Capps Sinkovitz ’10
Project Manager, Sawyer|Berson

Lauren Capps Sinkovitz ’10 is an architect and project manager at Sawyer|Berson, an interdisciplinary design firm in New York City founded by fellow tiger John Berson ’81. Her work at S|B includes high-end renovations of apartments and townhouses in New York City, as well as custom ground-up homes in the Hamptons. Prior to joining S|B, she was a senior architectural designer for Thomas O’Brien (Aero Studios) and his affiliated firm, Dan Fink Studio. There she managed the largest project in the firm’s history—the global interior architecture for the Greenwich Lane, a 5-building, 5-townhouse, 200-unit condo community that revitalized nearly a full city block in the West Village. She was also part of a diverse set of projects that included retail store design for Williams-Sonoma brands and light fixture design for Visual Comfort. Lauren has 10 years of design experience in private residential, large-scale multi-family residential, hospitality and retail, and her work at these firms has been featured in Architectural Digest, Elle Decor and Veranda magazines. She received her B.S.E. in Structural Engineering with a Certificate in Architecture and Engineering from Princeton University in 2010.


May 30, 2020
3:30 pm - 4:45 pm
Event Category:


Princeton University
Princeton, NJ 08540 United States
(609) 258 - 3000