WEST PALM BEACH, Fla. (October  28, 2020) –  Sherryl Muriente, Manager of Urban Placemaking for the West Palm Beach Downtown Development Authority (DDA) is set to receive the prestigious Palm Beach Bob Graham Architectural Awareness Award from the American Institute of Architects, Palm Beach Chapter (AIA Palm Beach). The award is named in honor of Bob Graham, two-time Governor of Florida and former member of the U.S. Senate, who has been designated an honorary member of AIA Florida and the national organization (AIA) for his outstanding support for architecture in both his public and private life. The award is presented to an individual citizen or public official who is not an architect but has used their profession to help advance the cause of good design and planning or contributed to the dignity and value of the architectural profession. Muriente, age 41, is among the youngest recipients of the award. 

“Sherryl’s ideas and execution has added an important vitality and innovation to the DDA staff since she joined our team in 2017,” said Raphael Clemente, Executive Director of the DDA. “Her ideas have most definitely made an important impact on Downtown West Palm Beach through inventive and informative programming.”  

Muriente’s long career promoting architecture and its principles from outside the profession is what caught the eye of AIA Palm Beach and this latest honor in her career. Her lengthy list of achievements span almost her entire career, which include teaching design and placemaking courses at Florida Atlantic University, to applying the theory of urban acupuncture through the design and construction of public art, such as CityZen Garden with LeJobart, a company that creates public art all over the world. Muriente has spoken at dozens of conferences and spearheaded even more exhibits and installations over the past 17 years. She has also been the recipient of several awards, including the 2017 Bethune Fellowship Medal, the 2015 Florida Excellence Award, and the 2013 Palm Beach Educator of the Year Award, all of which were presented to her by the AIA.

Since joining the DDA in 2017, Muriente has been a change agent by leading several successful projects bringing new life to DowntownWPB. These include Dining on the Spot, a program to increase outdoor dining space in response to COVID-19 concerns. This extremely successful program has become a model for cities across the country to follow and Muriente has been invited to speak about it multiple times, including presentations for the International Downtown Association and the Small Business Council in New York City. She is also preparing a paper on the subject for the Florida American Planning Association. Muriente also is the driving force in collaboration with the City of West Palm Beach and Community Redevelopment A behind Throughfare, the entrepreneur market pop-up along Clematis Street that is set to reopen later this year.

“I am so honored to receive this nomination,” said Muriente. “For almost two decades, I have always been drawn to building things with the community and have treaded a new career path that centers around the idea of making places with people. As the Manager of Urban Placemaking for the West Palm Beach Downtown Development Authority, it is fulfilling to work in what I am passionate about in my own backyard and to be recognized is a dream come true.”

Muriente will be presented with the Palm Beach Bob Graham Architectural Awareness Award at an award ceremony at The Breakers in Palm Beach on October 28, 2020. For more information, or to buy tickets please visit aia.org.  

About the Downtown Development Authority
The West Palm Beach DDA is an independent taxing district created in 1967 by a special act of the Florida Legislature. Its mission is to promote and enhance a safe, vibrant Downtown for our residents, businesses and visitors through the strategic development of economic, social and cultural opportunities. For more information about the DDA or Downtown West Palm Beach, please visit DowntownWPB.com or call the DDA at (561) 833-8873.

About AIA Palm Beach
Founded in 1912, the Florida Association of the American Institute of Architects consistently works to create more valuable, healthy, secure, and sustainable buildings, neighborhoods, and communities throughout the state. As one of 13 local chapters, AIA Palm Beach serves 300 members in Palm Beach County. Members adhere to a code of ethics and conduct to ensure the highest professional standards. The AIA provides members with tools and resources to assist them in their careers and business as well as engaging civic and government leaders, and the public to find solutions to pressing issues facing our communities, institutions, nation and world.