The Noel Polk Lifetime achievement award is a prestigious honor normally granted to living Mississippi connected creatives or patrons. This year, unlike all the others, the award went to Robert Ivy a renowned architect and CEO of the American Institute of Architects (AIA). He was rewarded together with a stained glass engineer from Pearl River glass studio, Andrew Young on the 2nd of June 2018. In her speech, the Mississippi Institute of Arts (MIAL) president, Nancy Laforge congratulated the architect who had ensured the general public had easy access to the architecture industry, something that was uncommon. Robert Ivy becomes part of a short list of the lifetime achievement award winners, the likes of Shelby Foote and Morgan Freeman.
In addition to this famed award, he was named a master architect by Alpha Rho Chi, the architectural society for adequately defining the importance of design. Robert has bagged many awards throughout his career among them being the Crain award by the American business media which is the highest ranked award for an individual. He was also recognized by the University of Arkansas and awarded the Deans Medal from the Fay Jones School of Architecture. The architect started off as a national publications critic before getting contracted by the McGraw Hill media house as their chief editor. While at the record, they hit the highest number of architectural journals sold worldwide.
The publication house was nominated in numerous American publication awards and won the national magazine award, Folio design awards, the 2008 MPA digital award among others. Robert Ivy was part of the team that launched a Mandarin version of the journal in China and the Middle East. Since his appointment as the executive vice president of AIA in 2011, Robert Ivy has seen the organization through creating a solid client base and attracting very high membership levels. AIA president, Carl Elefante commended him for being an exceptional representative for the company and the profession in general. Besides being an architect, he is an author with a Fay Jones biography that is currently in its third edition. The book tackles the works of an American architect that firmly believed in Frank Wright.