2013 DTA Medal

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Theo David

Distinguished Teacher 2013–14

Theoharis David was born and raised by Cypriot immigrant parents on Long Island. He received a bachelor’s degree in architecture from Pratt Institute. After serving in the U.S Army as a musician, he attended a graduate program in architecture at Yale University, studying directly under the modernist master Paul Rudolph.

Having gained work experience in New York, he took the advice of Rudolph, his mentor and teacher, to “go where you can build” and in 1967, he moved to the recently independent Republic of Cyprus.

David began his teaching career at Pratt in 1968 and, in 1979, was appointed chair of Graduate Architecture where he recruited to the faculty significant architect-urbanists such as Lebbeus Woods, Hani Rashid, John Johansen, and Michael Webb. He also established the Pratt in Cyprus + Greece Foreign studies program, which he directed for 20 years.

His firm, David & Dikaios Associates, designed diverse, technologically advanced buildings for Cyprus and the Middle East in the ‘80’s. In New York, David designed award-winning churches and interiors that have been documented as part of the late twentieth-century architecture legacy of New York City. In 1988, he formed a joint venture Theo. David Architects + KAL Engineering, which has designed internationally recognized buildings.

David achieved tenure as full professor at Pratt in 1993. He was elevated to Fellowship in the American Institute of Architects (FAIA) for “notable contributions to the advancement of the profession of architecture” in 1996. He has been characterized by his American peers as “a teacher of teachers” and has advocated for architectural excellence by encouraging and supporting the work of younger architects.

He is currently involved in projects globally while continuing to teach full time. He has lectured in cities worldwide and been a guest critic at leading schools of architecture. His work as an architect and educator continues to be exhibited and published internationally.