J (Junijan) Tang, AIA, LEED AP
HDR Architecture Inc.
Principal, Federal Programs

JJ Tang, AIA, LEED AP, is Principal, Federal Programs, with HDR Architecture Inc. He also is Chair of the SAME Architectural Practice Committee, a committee he helped establish in 2012 along with other past Urbahn Medal recipients, and has served as chair of since its inception. JJ, an accomplished architect, was the 2010 SAME Urbahn Medal recipient and this year at JETC will be honored with the President's Medal for his outstanding contributions to SAME during the current president's term of office. Tang continues to work to bring awareness to the role of the architect in creating sustainable, adaptable, and dependable federal buildings. Two recent articles published in The Military Engineer that he authored, "A Place to Call Home: Pushing the Sustainable Design Envelope on Military Barracks" and "How Form Follows Function: Inside the Design of Secure Government Facilities" provide an in-depth look at a building’s design affects its functionality, longevity, and overall appeal to the most important stakeholder: the user. Tang, before joining HDR, worked at M+W Zander, Solomon Cordwell & Buenz Associates, Murphy Jahn, and Nagle & Hantry Associates. He graduated from Huazhong University of Science and Technology in 1989 with a degree in Architecture, and earned a master's in Architecture in 1993 from Illinois Institute of Technology.

What is the Architectural Practice Committee (APC)?
APC is a committee to bring together all SAME architects and our collaborators working in DoD and federal facility built environment. The committee has three simple objectives: 

1. Promote architectural practice within SAME.
2. Broaden SAME influence in the architectural, building design and construction industries.
3. Networking and mentoring.

Why should a member of SAME want to participate on this Committee?
For any of the three reasons stated above. The committee offers unique professional growth, networking opportunities and works for a common cause.


Is the APC working with any external architectural related organizations such as AIA?
SAME and AIA signed a MOA last year to collaborate between our committee and AIA Public Architects committee (AIA PA). The APC quarterly journal is published at AIA PA website. Members of AIA leadership were invited to be jurors for SAME Urbahn Medal selection and both APC and AIA members speak at each other's professional sessions. 


How is the APC working with the Posts?
APC has established about 20 APC liaisons to SAME local posts. These liaisons are encouraged to participate at local post board activities and help local posts to select architectural education sessions. However, as we move forward, certainly more work can be done in this area. I do hope any post with facility design and construction activities, would select one architect as a board member and this individual will automatically become APC local liaison and work with APC national team.


What are people in the APC passionate about?  What worries them?
We are passionate about advancing our profession on behalf of all SAME architects and our collaborators. What worries us are what we do and our contribution to DoD and federal built environment are not well understood and respected by our peers. We have a lot of work to do to educate federal facility design and construction practitioners and AIA community at large the importance of what we do.


What has been your greatest achievement as Chair?
I am very honored to offer the opportunity of a lifetime to bring SAME architects together and provide SAME architects a voice in our Society and our professional organization.


What are some of the qualifications that made you suited for role as Chair?
Have a vision and a desire for a good cause, and willing to be a team player, trust and motive the people who serve with you.


Tell us a little about your day job and what you love about it?
I am a seller and doer working as a federal principal for HDR. In a nutshell, I work with my team to go get projects and work on these projects as a lead architect. What I love about it the most is to be able to collaborate with my clients and others to turn their needs and visions into reality, and realize that our work contributes to the success of their mission, and ultimately to our country's national security.


What has been your career path and experience in the A/E/C industry?
I got my master of architecture degree from IIT, Chicago in early 90s, studied and worked for renowned architect Helmut Jahn, worked my way up from an juror architect at Jahn's office to a lead architect for M+W group (formally Lester B. Knight) in 2000s, had very broad experience in building types of airport, cooperate headquarters, housing, research laboratories. While working for M+W group, collaborating with Clark and Blinderman construction company, we won the $90M prototype design/build integrated naval recruit training barracks combining recruit housing, training, dining and administrative functions all under one roof just like what you would expect being on a ship. This unique concept brought me into the navy recruit training command 10 year, nearly $800M recapitalization program. I joined HDR in 2006. As a prime federal AE provider, HDR offers me even broader experience in almost all DoD building types in four continents, various deliverable methods in the last ten years. 


What has been your involvement with SAME?
I am a member of Lake Michigan post for over ten years, and the founder and the first chair of SAME Architectural Practice Committee, also serving at SAME national board of directions until June of 2016.  


What is your favorite SAME memory?
I love to serve the Society with my fellow SAME architects for such a good cause and along the way develop a strong bond both professionally and personally with these people. I can truly call them my friends. To name a few - Paula Loomis, Dave Thompson, David Packard, Rad Delaney, Ed Gauvreau, Jim Pocock, Yvonne Lee Simon, Kathleen Reid, Nick Despot, and many others.


Join APC
If you are interested in joining the Architectural Practice Committee, please go to www.same.org and click on MEMBER LOGIN.  Log in with your username (which is most likely your email address) and your password (which is your ID number, unless you personalized it).  Once you log in, you will see a Member Account link on the left toolbar.  That will take you to your Member Dashboard.  Click on the link to update your information.  There is a section on the update form called My Committees.  You can join or remove yourself from any of our National Committees.