Vision

The Wright-Ingraham Institute envisions a model of integrated research and field studies that focus on complex interfaces (nexi) between natural and cultural systems in order to open new paths to solving contemporary dilemmas.

Mission Statement

Today, more than ever, our understanding of interfaces (nexi) between ecological/environmental systems and human cultures requires integrated inquiry and new problem solving techniques. To meet these challenges, the Wright-Ingraham Institute conducts and applies multifaceted research to site specific field study programs that engage with and benefit graduate students, leading academic thinkers, scientists, professionals, policy makers and stakeholders. Our goal is to model ways of understanding and interpreting complex systems that contribute to meaningful solutions in the service of society.

Our Story

The Wright-Ingraham Institute is a private, non-profit 501(c)(3) education and research institution established in Colorado in 1970 by its Founding Director, the late Elizabeth Wright Ingraham. Elizabeth was a prolific author, a Fellow of the American Institute of Architects, a champion of women’s issues, and a highly regarded innovator who served on numerous boards and committees throughout her illustrious career. She is credited with the design of approximately 150 buildings throughout the Southwestern United States and was posthumously inducted into the Colorado Women’s Hall of Fame.

Elizabeth Wright Ingraham at Running Creek Field Station, circa 1973.

Following in the footsteps of her grandfather, Frank Lloyd Wright, and strongly influenced by the teachings of George Bernard Shaw, Elizabeth was passionate about architecture, community, conservation, and creating synergistic relationships between natural and built systems. She created WII to promote, direct, encourage, and develop opportunities contributing to the conservation, preservation, and responsible use of human and natural resources. Under her direction, the Institute opened the Richard T. Parker Advanced Center for Research in 1973 at its Running Creek Field Station site. The field research and educational workshops, developed to study the ecosystems of the Front Range of Colorado, remain cornerstone to WII’s programming mission.

THE INTERFACE BETWEEN NATURE & CULTURE
Learn about the history and work of the Wright-Ingraham Institute.

Our Team

WII retreat in Palm Springs, 2021.

Board of Directors

Catherine Ingraham, Ph.D., President of the Board of the Wright-Ingraham Institute, is a Full Professor in the Graduate Program of Architecture at Pratt Institute, a program which she chaired from 1999-2005. She also has been a Visiting Faculty member at the Graduate School of Design, Harvard University, since 2016. Ingraham earned her Ph.D. at Johns Hopkins University and was an editor, with Michael Hays and Alicia Kennedy, of the critical journal Assemblage. Ingraham has lectured at multiple national and internationals schools of architecture and published widely in journals and book collections. Her books include Architecture, Animal, Human (Routledge Press, London 2006), Architecture and The Burdens of Linearity (Yale University Press, New Haven 1998). She is currently working on two books, Architecture, Property and the Pursuit of Happiness and Worlds Between. Ingraham has won numerous fellowships and awards, including the Canadian Center for Architecture Fellowship, Graham Foundation grants, and MacDowell residencies. Catherine leads the StudyTank program at the WII.
Anna Grady is Vice President for Human Resources at NRG Systems. Anna is an accomplished leader in Human Resources and Administration, specializing in employee relations, organizational strategy and development, change management, strategic workforce planning and recruitment. Anna’s broad experience and pragmatic approach to developing employee engagement techniques, communication strategies and leadership development initiatives helps steer how WII approaches all HR-related matters, in accordance with our values, culture, and operational philosophies. Anna lives and works in Vermont. Anna also leads the WII’s Grants program.
Frederick Marks, AIA, LEED AP BD+C, Six Sigma Green Belt, is currently a Visiting Scholar and Research Collaborator at the Salk Institute for Biological Studies in La Jolla, CA. Mr. Marks has been a licensed architect for over thirty years and has a planning & design specialty in healthcare and laboratory science facilities. He holds degrees in architecture and business administration with a major in real estate & urban land economics. Mr. Marks is a founding Board member and Past-President of the Academy of Neuroscience for Architecture (ANFA) in San Diego, CA. He is a former Assistant Director of the National American Institute of Architects (AIA) Professional Interest Committees, and a former National AIA Board Knowledge Committee member and advisor to the National AIA Research Summits. He is a Past-President of his local AIA chapter and currently serves as its representative to California Committee on the Environment (COTE). Mr. Marks is currently an advisor to the National Institute of Building Sciences, the Delos WELL Living Laboratory, the National ASHRAE Standing Guideline Project Committee, and the Johns Hopkins University Medical Center Mind/Brain Institute. Mr. Marks attended the WII Field Station program in 1975 as a student.
Frank Miller is a design-build architect experienced with residential, commercial, manufacturing and educational building types. Frank has expertise in urban/architectural design guidelines, master planning, digital design methods, architectural education, and research in renewable energy. He is interested in the intersection of art and science in the built environment and has a Bachelor of Science in Art and Design and a Master’s of Architecture from MIT, where he has also taught as an assistant professor. Frank lives with his family in the greater Madison, Wisconsin area.

Collaborators

Dylan Gauthier is an artist, curator, designer and educator whose practice investigates relationships between ecology, architecture, landscape, collaboration, and social change. He is program director for the Field Stations Iceland program in 2023. Previously, Gauthier was a founder of the boatbuilding and publishing collective Mare Liberum (www.thefreeseas.org) and of the Sunview Luncheonette (www.thesunview.org), a co-op for art, politics, and poetics in Greenpoint, Brooklyn. His individual and collective projects have been exhibited at the Centre Pompidou-Musée national d’art moderne, The Parrish Art Museum, CCVA at Harvard University, 2016 Biennale de Paris, Center for Architecture, The International Studio and Curatorial Program-ISCP, EFA Project Space, Pioneer Works, Walker Art Center, the Schuylkill Center for Environmental Education, and at numerous other venues in the US and abroad. He holds an MFA in Integrated Media Arts from Hunter College, CUNY in 2012.

Frida Foberg, Program Manager, is a Swedish community-oriented artist, architect, and curator based in New York. Holding an MA in Architecture from Aarhus School of Architecture, Frida works with communities and organizations to develop interdisciplinary projects and programs aimed at reconsidering and broadening awareness of social and environmental issues. At the core of Frida’s work lies her curiosity about people, prompting her to pose questions that delve into the concept of self and others. Through her art, she creates immersive installations and stages that center around the act of eating, aiming to foster spaces for the multitude of voices and their interactions. Her work has been exhibited in prestigious venues worldwide, including the Venice Biennale (Venice, Italy), Liljevalchs (Stockholm, Sweden), Arko Art Museum (Seoul, South Korea), Wilmer Jennings Gallery (New York, NY), The Invisible Dog Art Center (Brooklyn, NY), Turn Park Art Space (West Stockbridge, MA) and Opalka Gallery (Albany, NY). Frida’s collaborations include Arts Letters & Numbers, the NOpiates Committee, UNICEF Office of Innovation, China Academy of Fine Art, Cooper Union, Big Picture Learning, Art Council Korea, Education Reimagined, Iowa State University, National Coalition Building Institute, and Youth FX.

What We Do

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Growth Strategy

The next three to five years present the Wright-Ingraham Institute with an important horizon toward which we will set our sights to grow incrementally with the goal of building both our programs and our infrastructure. We envision a future in which our basic core operations are covered by a modest annual distribution from our endowment. Programs, projects, communications, and event-related expenses will be covered through a combination of earned income from individual gifts, program fees, and other support. To date the Institute’s programs have been initiated by the WII Board members and incubated under their leadership. We envision continued engagement of Board members in program development in coordination with senior staff who will provide program leadership. Over the next three years our growth strategy centers upon developing the infrastructure to direct, manage and sustain our programs and projects with incremental additions to the Institute’s staff, expansion of our income strategies, deepening our commitment to diversity and inclusion in all aspects of our work, and evolving our programs to ensure a wider impact and increase the number of individuals and institutions engaged in our work.

Read about our current fundraising goals here and more about the Wright-Ingraham Institute here.

Organizational
Statements

The Wright-Ingraham Institute’s Organizational Statements represent the core beliefs of our Institute. They inspire and guide our choices in the way we operate and deal with people. They help determine how we approach our decision-making processes and how we implement our programming.