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Iulo Leads Hamer Center in Continuing Community Design Collaborations

Lisa Domenica Iulo is continuing the Hamer Center for Community Design’s strong record of success in collaborative outreach projects as its new director. Iulo, Penn State associate professor of architecture, has been serving in that role since July. The center is housed in the Stuckeman School of Architecture and Landscape Architecture within the College of Arts and Architecture.

A registered architect, professional planner, and LEED Accredited Professional (LEED AP), Iulo has long been engaged with the center’s outreach initiatives, from studio projects with direct community partnerships to advising the award-winning Penn State 2015 U.S. Department of Energy Race to Zero Student Design Competition and ensuing Greenbuild Home project, a showcase for low-energy design that is currently under construction. The Hamer Center is collaborating with the State College Community Land Trust‚ which initiated the project in order to provide affordable housing‚ and the project’s design/build firm to develop educational materials related to the duplex and the design of zero-energy housing.

Made possible through a generous endowment from the Hamer Foundation, the Hamer Center was founded in 1998 to facilitate impactful, thoughtful community design. Welcoming discourse and collaboration among Penn State researchers and designers, government agencies, non-profit organizations, and citizen groups, the center strives to encourage building community through building knowledge.

“Past private gifts have enabled the Hamer Center to impact both the student experience and the marketplace. The center supports cutting-edge research and helps to ensure the next generation of builders and designers brings an integrated approach combined with an awareness of socio-economic and environmental impact,” said Don Lenze, director of development for the College of Arts and Architecture. “Lisa’s commitment to the future of the Hamer Center is sure to inspire additional philanthropic partners to empower the center to do even more.”

Iulo was selected following a call for nominations among Stuckeman School faculty. She will serve a three-year term.

“Much exciting research and community outreach has been happening in the Hamer Center over the past several years, but many people are not aware of this work or the role of the Hamer Center in the Stuckeman School and across the University,” said Iulo. “We are making a concerted effort to ‘open our doors’ and engage others in potential research collaborations.”

Iulo’s work has been recognized in research and practice related to residential green building practices and affordable housing, energy efficiency, and strategies for the implementation of renewable energy at the building and community scale. She said she is committed to undergraduate and graduate education and research and is open to having new faculty and students along with existing colleagues work within the Hamer Center for Community Design.

Achievements so far include the re-establishment of a partnership with the Pottstown Area Health and Wellness Foundation, facilitated by studio and research partnerships with several Penn State faculty members and students, and involvement in the launch of Ecology and Design (E+D) at Penn State, which strives to integrate ecological science and physical design.

For more information on the Hamer Center, visit