South Dakota Architect named one of National Young Architect Award Recipients 2024

AIA National has announced this year’s 2024 award for the Young Architect Award. These early career architects have been recognized with the Young Architects Award for their exceptional leadership and significant contributions to the architecture profession, including environmental advocacy, increasing access to great design, and mentoring future architects.

Of this year’s recipients, one South Dakota architect was recognized. Angela Boersma, AIA is the embodiment of a Citizen Architect. She owns her own practice, ID8, in Brookings SD and has previously served as a the Brookings county commissioner.

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Angela Boersma taking her oath of office as a Brookings County Commissioner. Copyright Karen Nelson

In January 2019, Boersma took her oath of office, becoming the youngest person and first-ever architect to serve Brookings County, South Dakota, as a county commissioner. In that role, which she held through 2022, she served more than 36,000 residents by providing a strategic voice on infrastructure, public health, and community well-being. Her architecture background, along with her collaborative and analytical nature, helped her address challenging years in the community.

Her service coincided with two major FEMA flood events in 2019, which were followed by an unprecedented two inland derechos in the summer of 2022. The county greatly benefited from her experience in infrastructure and building assessments as she advocated for investment in resilient construction methods. Between emergency declarations, her thoughtful leadership steered the county through the COVID-19 pandemic and subsequent allocation of $6.8 million for critical facility and first-responder investments.

In addition to her government service, Boersma is a founding principal of ID8 Architecture, a multidisciplinary studio in downtown Brookings, South Dakota. Boersma helped launch the firm in 2018 after six years as an assistant professor of interior design at her alma mater, South Dakota State University. She has been the architect of record for 14 downtown Brookings projects and has been a preservation consultant for 12 additional projects, positioning herself as a trusted advisor to countless community members.

Mentoring staff at the ID8 Architecture offices in Brookings, S.D. Copyright Jocelyn Vogel, ID8 Architecture

One of the most impactful examples of her work is the restoration and reuse of the Brookings WPA Armory, originally constructed in 1937. Following efforts to demolish the building, she led a winning response to the city’s RFP for the property’s redevelopment that demonstrated how the addition of a boutique hotel would dramatically increase visitorship and the economic health of a rural downtown. The project was completed by Linchpin Corporation, a designer-driven development firm where Boersma is also a founding partner.

ID8 Architecture
Rendering of the future Armory Hotel in Brookings, S.D., where Boersma served as both Architect and Developer

Rather than simply drawing attention to the issues she sees around her, Boersma shapes teams of professionals to create compelling solutions. She is always focused on actions that will benefit the communities she serves.

See all 2023 award recipients here.

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(Project images from the Young Architect Design Submission)

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