Woodbury University

Woodbury University

Burbank, CA | San Diego, CA


Woodbury University School of Architecture’s Barbara Bestor, FAIA, Named to AIA College of Fellows

By nreyes
Mar 7, '17 2:53 PM EST

AIA Fellowship Program Recognizes ‘Significant Contributions to Profession of Architecture and Society’ by Award-Winning Architect and Educator

LOS ANGELES (Feb. 27, 2017) – Underscoring her “significant contribution to architecture and society,” Woodbury University’s School of Architecture professor Barbara Bestor has been named to the American Institute of Architects (AIA) College of Fellows, the university announced today. 

Bestor is the Julius Shulman Distinguished Professor of Practice at Woodbury, Executive Director of the Julius Shulman Institute and founding chair of the graduate program at the School of Architecture.  She is the principal and founder of Bestor Architecture, where she has developed a varied, creative and aesthetically progressive body of work over the last 20 years.  In 2015, Bestor received an AIA National Honor Award for Interior Architecture for the Culver City, Calif. headquarters of Beats By Dre. 

According to the AIA, election to the Fellowship program not only recognizes the achievements of the architect as an individual, but also honors before the public and the profession a model architect who has made a significant contribution to architecture and society on a national level (  Bestor now carries the professional designation “FAIA.”

“The AIA Fellowship program recognizes the very best in our profession,” said Ingalill Wahlroos-Ritter, AIA, Interim Dean, Woodbury School of Architecture.  “With verve and joie de vivre, Barbara has mentored a generation of young designers influenced by her material and formal experimentation that integrates vibrant and distinctive graphics.  Her projects range in scale from residences to urban interventions and bring together artistic vision with grounded-yet-innovative design, drawing inspiration from cutting-edge cultural discourse in other creative fields. More than any other contemporary Southern California architect, Barbara has redefined the architecture of Los Angeles and is increasingly bringing her unique L.A. sensibility to prominent projects nationally. I join with the architecture community at Woodbury in extending to her our congratulations and heartfelt appreciation.”

"I am deeply honored by the opportunity to join the Fellowship program,” Bestor said. “It’s a professional and personal milestone that is especially meaningful, given the AIA’s focus on service to the community at large.  My experience at Woodbury has been an integral part of how I practice my craft, and it’s been a privilege to share with my students and colleagues the sense of discovery and inspiration I’ve always found within the discipline of architecture.”

Bestor Architecture, founded in 1995, is a collaborative firm that produces modern designs that navigate among pop culture, art and architecture, with recent projects including Blackbirds, an innovative small lot housing solution; headquarters for both Nasty Gal and Beats By Dre; and Intelligentsia Coffee + Tea.  Bestor believes that good design creates an engaged urban life and embraces the “strange beauty” that enhances everyday life experience.  Bestor has also served on the faculty at UCLA, Harvard University and the Southern California Institute of Architecture (SCI-Arc).   She is the author of Bohemian Modern: Living in Silver Lake (Harper Collins, 2006) and holds a MArch degree from SCI-Arc and a bachelor’s in Visual and Environmental Studies from Harvard University.

The 2017 Jury of Fellows from the American Institute of Architects elevated 178 AIA members to its prestigious College of Fellows.  The Fellowship program was developed to elevate those architects who have made a significant contribution to architecture and society and who have achieved a standard of excellence in the profession.   Election to fellowship not only recognizes the achievements of architects as individuals, but also their significant contribution to architecture and society on a national level.  Out of a total AIA membership of more than 90,000, approximately 3 percent of members are recognized as fellows.  The 2017 Fellows will be honored at an investiture ceremony at the AIA Conference on Architecture 2017 in Orlando. 

About The American Institute of Architects

Founded in 1857, the American Institute of Architects consistently works to create more valuable, healthy, secure, and sustainable buildings, neighborhoods, and communities. Through nearly 300 state and local chapters, the AIA advocates for public policies that promote economic vitality and public wellbeing. Members adhere to a code of ethics and conduct to ensure the highest professional standards. The AIA provides members with tools and resources to assist them in their careers and business as well as engaging civic and government leaders and the public to find solutions to pressing issues facing our communities, institutions, nation and world. Visit

About Woodbury University

Founded in 1884, Woodbury University is one of the oldest institutions of higher education in Southern California.  The university ranks 15th among the nation’s “25 Colleges That Add the Most Value,” according to Money Magazine, and is a 2016-17 College of Distinction. Woodbury is a finalist for the General Community Service Award, a part of the 2015 President’s Higher Education Community Service Honor Roll recognition program. With campuses in Burbank/Los Angeles and San Diego, the university offers bachelor's degrees from the School of Architecture, School of Business, School of Media, Culture & Design, and College of Liberal Arts, along with a Master of Business Administration, Master of Architecture, Master of Interior Architecture and Master of Science in Architecture.  The San Diego campus offers Bachelor of Architecture and Master of Architecture, Master of Interior Architecture and Master of Landscape Architecture degrees, as well as a Master of Science in Architecture, Real Estate Development.  Visit for more information.

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