The SA+P Dean’s Advisory Council

The SA+P Dean’s Advisory Council is a group of alumni and friends of the school and the Institute who support the MIT School of Architecture and Planning’s educational and research activities, on campus and worldwide. Drawn from a range of backgrounds and expertise, they share a commitment to the school’s mission to apply our strengths in architecture, planning, design, art, urbanism, media, and real estate to discover—and deliver—better futures.

The council’s members advise and guide the dean on a variety of topics to help hone the vision for school-wide initiatives, programs, and priorities. They serve the school community and MIT by strengthening SA+P networks, connections, and resources around the globe. Members serve three-year terms and meet as a full group at MIT once a year.


Paola Antonelli joined The Museum of Modern Art in 1994 and is a Senior Curator in the Department of Architecture & Design, as well as MoMA’s founding Director of Research & Development. With a Master’s degree in Architecture from the Polytechnic of Milan, Paola Antonelli has also earned Honorary Doctorate degrees from the Royal College of Art and Kingston University, London; the Art Center College of Design, Pasadena; and Pratt Institute in New York. She has curated numerous shows, lectured worldwide, and has served on several international architecture and design juries.

Her most recent exhibition, Items: Is Fashion Modern?, devoted to 111 items of clothing that have had a strong impact on the world in the past 100 years, opened at MoMA in October 2017. She is currently working on the next Triennale di Milano, entitled Broken Nature (March 2019); on the book, States of Design; and on a new Theory of Everything for design.

She can be found on Twitter as @CuriousOctopus, and on Instagram as @paolantonelli.

José Miguel Bejos is the Vice President for Grupo PRODI, in Mexico. A graduate of Universidad Anáhuac, Bejos became Vice President of Compañía lnversora Corporativa (CIC), the Mexican holding company founded by his family two generations ago and composed of operations in sectors such as construction, outdoor advertising, mass transit operations, aeronautics, and marine activities.

Among his showcase accomplishments during his time at CIC is the design and construction of the Mexipuerto Ciudad Azteca, the first high-quality transit-oriented development in Mexico. The project was undertaken in partnership with lmpulsora del Desarrollo y Empleo en América Latina (IDEAL) of Grupo Carso. This project marked a new standard in the development of transportation infrastructure designed with the passenger in mind.

Grupo Promotor de Desarrollo e lnfraestructura (Grupo PRODI) was created to incorporate the expanded activities of the conglomerate, where Mr. Bejos has presided in a role of leadership since its inception four years ago. Grupo PRODI continues the original vision of CIC, providing comprehensive services for the design and construction of medium- and large-scale infrastructure projects with presence in various states of the Mexican Republic. Grupo PRODI, in partnership with Shaw Group, has financed and built petroleum production platforms at the Lobina site for the Mexican oil monopoly, Petróleos Mexicanos (PEMEX). Among Grupo PRODI's previous clients are: the Mexican Federal Government, various state governments, PEMEX, Comisión Federal de Electricidad (CFE), and various private sector clients.

In the outdoor advertising industry, Mr. Bejos is a founding partner of lmágenes y Muebles Urbanos (IMU), where he holds the position of Chairman of the Board of Directors. IMU is an outdoor furniture company that services Mexico's largest city with more than 20,000 advertising podiums, benches, etc. IMU also operates publicity installations in 15 other Mexican cities. As a member of the Board of Directors of Grupo Mexicano de Aeronáutica (GMA), which includes companies such as Bell Helicopter Mexico and Servicio Técnico Aéreo México (STAM), Mr. Bejos has achieved market leadership in rotary wing transport, carrying more than 1.5 million passengers annually, with operations in five Mexican cities.

Diane Greene is a Director of AP Moeller, SAP, Stripe, Wix, and a lifetime member of the MIT Corporation. Previously Ms. Greene was on the boards of Alphabet, Intuit, and Khan Academy. She was the founding CEO of VMware, which she took public to a $19 billion valuation; initial CEO of Google Cloud; and the founding CEO of VXtreme and Bebop, sold to Microsoft and Google respectively. Prior to entering the tech industry, she worked as a naval architect designing ships, mooring systems, and offshore platforms. She also ran engineering for Windsurfing International and many windsurfing and World Cup championships.

Ms. Greene has an M.S. in computer science from UC, Berkeley, an M.S. in naval architecture from MIT, and a B.S. in mechanical engineering and an Honorary Sc.D from the University of Vermont. She is a member of the National Academy of Engineering and won the 1976 Women’s Nationals in sailing.

Dr. Svafa Grönfeldt is a venture designer and entrepreneur who has built parallel careers in academia and industry. She is a member of the board of directors of Össur, a Nasdaq OMX listed global leader in orthopedics, and a founding member of MITdesignX, an academic program at the MIT School of Architecture and Planning dedicated to design innovation and entrepreneurship.

Throughout her career, Dr. Grönfeldt has looked for ways to combine her academic background, executive experience and lifelong passion for design and architecture to make a meaningful difference by working with teams of people around the world designing companies, brands, organizational structures, work processes, experiences and facilities.

As a long-term member of a team that has created and scaled two global life science companies, Dr. Grönfeldt served as the Executive Vice President of Organizational Development at Alvogen, and Deputy to the CEO at Actavis Group. Both companies have been featured in Harvard Business School cases. Other previous positions include, President of Reykjavik University, various board of director positions in Europe and Asia, mentoring in startup accelerator programs and teaching in academic and executive education programs around the world.

Dr. Grönfeldt earned her PhD from the London School of Economics. She completed the Design Discovery program at Harvard GSD and studied architectural history and design at the Academy of Art University.

Hadeel Ibrahim is the founding Executive Director of the Mo Ibrahim Foundation, which was established in 2006 to support leadership and governance in Africa. Ms. Ibrahim is also co-chair of the Board of Directors of the Africa Center in New York, whose mission is to promote partnership, collaboration, dialogue, and understanding between African artists, business leaders, and civil society and their counterparts in the United States and beyond.

Ms. Ibrahim sits of the boards of the Mary Robinson Foundation for Climate Justice, the Clinton Foundation, Synergos Institute, 1:54 Contemporary African Art Fair, and the Governing Board of the African Governance Institute (AGI). She is also a Patron of Restless Development, a youth-led development agency. 

Ms. Ibrahim previously served as a member of the UN Secretary-General’s High-Level Panel on Humanitarian Financing, on the Boards of Refugees International, the Carter Center (UK), and the FT/IFC Transformational Business Awards Judging Panel. 

Scott Lawin is a member of the Board of Directors and Chief Operating Officer of Moore Capital Management, a global alternative investment firm.

Prior to joining Moore in 2010, Mr. Lawin was a Managing Director and Chief Operating Officer of the Liquid Markets Hedge Fund business at Fortress Investment Group. Prior to joining Fortress in 2005, Mr. Lawin spent 12 years at Goldman, Sachs & Co., serving as Global Head of the Credit Liability Management business, Head of Global Strategy and Chief of Staff of the Fixed Income, Currency & Commodity Division, founding member and Chief Operating Officer of GS Ventures, and Head of the Energy & Power Capital Markets group.

Mr. Lawin earned his SB from the Massachusetts Institute of Technology in 1993.

Alan Leventhal is the Chairman and Chief Executive Officer of Beacon Capital Partners, a private REIT based in Boston. Since 1998, Beacon has raised eight investment vehicles totaling over $12 billion in equity from a diverse investor group including leading endowments; foundations; public, private and foreign pension funds; financial institutions; and sovereign wealth funds. This equity capital has financed 150 office investments with a value of over $30 billion. Prior to the formation of Beacon, Mr. Leventhal was CEO and President of Beacon Properties Corporation, a publicly traded REIT. In 1997, he merged that company into Equity Office Properties at peak stock value for his shareholders.   

In 1996 and 1997, Mr. Leventhal was awarded the Realty Stock Review’s Outstanding CEO award and, in 1996, he received the Commercial Property News Office Property Executive of the Year Award. In 2004, he was Ernst & Young’s New England Entrepreneur of the Year and, in 2015, he received the Linde Public Service Award from the National Association of Industrial and Office Properties.

Mr. Leventhal is the Chairman of the Damon Runyon Cancer Research Foundation, which focuses on funding the best and brightest young cancer investigators. The organization has had remarkable success and has funded 12 individuals early in their careers who later won the Nobel Prize.

Mr. Leventhal has also been active at several major universities. He currently serves on the MIT Corporation and together with his wife, Sherry, recently endowed the Norman B. Leventhal Center for Advanced Urbanism in his father’s name. Mr. Leventhal led Boston University through a period of transition from 2004 to 2008 as Chairman of its Board of Trustees. During his tenure, the university instituted new governance policies that led to reformation of the Board of Trustees, the appointment of a new President, and the initiation of BU’s first major capital campaign. Previously, he served on the boards of his alma maters, Northwestern University and the Amos Tuck School of Business at Dartmouth College.            

Alain Levy is a civil engineer who holds an MS from the Ecole Nationale des Ponts et Chaussées and an MS from MIT’s Technology and Policy Program (1987). Beginning as a commodity trader (sugar, cocoa) with Sucden, he subsequently founded several digital companies that have an international presence (United States, Latin America, Europe, Russia) in the areas of cloud computing, data, natural language processing, and Blockchain. 

Mr. Levy is CEO of Weborama, a publicly traded company that helps data-driven marketers to ignite growth by leveraging consumer  knowledge, using semantic AI.

He is also General Partner at Ycor, a company with a focus on the future of interactions between companies and citizens. Mr. Levy is the author of the 2010 volume Sur les Traces de Big Brother (Tracking Big Brother), analyzing the future of privacy in the digital era. 

Priti Paul ’90 is director of the century-old Apeejay Surrendra Group and Oxford Bookstores. She was educated at MIT, Harvard University, the Architectural Association School of Architecture, UK, and the Royal Institute of British Architects.

She has been at the forefront of managing the business of the century-old Apeejay Surrendra Group post her father’s assassination in 1990. She has expanded the business of the Oxford Bookstore in India and abroad and launched ApeejayArts, India’s first gallery of 'new media' art, among other initiatives.

Having conceptualized, designed, and launched a range of projects in India and abroad, Priti Paul’s latest initiative is her childrens alphabet book ABC Desi - this is a lovingly created alphabet book with a difference - where English alphabets and Indian imagery meet drama, beauty and uniqueness.

Priti Paul is a member of prestigious organizations like Royal Institute of British Architects, Women in Shipping and Trade Association (WISTA), England, India Committee of American Bureau of Shipping (USA), FICCI Committee of Art and Business of Art (India), Harvard Club (India), MIT Club (India), Founder - Apeejay Kolkatta Literary Festival (AKLF).

Cynthia Reed is active in MIT leadership positions and cultural activities throughout Boston. From 2010 to 2014, she served as chair of the MIT Corporation Partner’s Program, and for the past eight years has been a member of the MIT Humanities Visiting Committee.

In addition, she has served on the Board of Overseers for the Museum of Fine Arts, Boston, since 2006, and became a trustee in 2011. In January 2014 she organized a series of panel discussions for the Boston Athenaeum on The Future of the Museum. She serves on the Executive Advisory Board of Le Laboratoire and on the board of The Trustees of Reservations. Ms. Reed received her BA from Northern Illinois University.

Marisa Moreira Salles is a publisher, editor, and book designer, as well as an entrepreneur in the technology space.

She co-founded BEI.Editora, a Brazilian publishing house, in 1995. From 2003 to 2010, she was the CEO of U.NEAR, an IT company she established, with longstanding partners, in 2000. In 2010, she launched Arq.Futuro, a think-tank to discuss architecture and the future of cities. And, in 2014, she set up POR QUÊ?, a digital platform dedicated to making Economics accessible to the general public.

Today, Ms. Salles co-chairs the publishing house and Arq.Futuro and runs POR QUÊ?. She is also a curator for Arq.Futuro debates and BEI.Editora exhibitions. With the help of the Arq.Futuro team, she is currently advising on the project of the new YouTube space in Rio de Janeiro.

Ms. Salles also holds board positions in several philanthropic organizations, including the São Paulo Art Biennial, the Instituto Parque do Flamengo, the Instituto Parque Ecologico Sitiê, and Urbem (the Institute of Urbanism and Studies for the Metropolis).

Talal K Shair

  • Chairman-CEO of Dar Al-Handasah Consultants (Shair and Partners) and of the Dar Group it founded comprising Perkins + Will USA, T.Y. Lin Group USA, PYR Interiors France, Penspen Group UK, IPA Energy + Water Economics UK, Landrum & Brown USA, D2 Consult Austria, Ross & Baruzzini USA, Currie & Brown UK, and Maffeis Engineering Italy.
  • Member - Young Presidents Organization.
  • Founding Member - Young Presidents Organization, Cairo Chapter.
  • Member - Board of Trustees of American University of Beirut, Lebanon.
  • Member - Board of Trustees of International College, Beirut, Lebanon.
  • Member - Board of Trustees of King’s Academy, Jordan.
  • Member - LAU Advisory Board.

Alan Spoon is Board Chair at Fortive, Inc. (FTV) and Partner Emeritus at Polaris Partners (a venture capital firm with investments in life sciences and technology). 

Today he serves on a variety of public company boards —FORTIVE, Inc. (FTV: businesses include Fluke Instruments, Tektronix, Gilbarco, etc.);  Danaher Inc (DHR), IAC, Inc. (IAC), The Match Group (MTCH), and CableOne (CABO).  At Polaris, Alan currently leads investments in Phreesia,, Earth Networks and others.  His past venture investments included Focus Financial Partners,  LegalZoom, MatrixRFID, Cushcraft Wireless, TechTarget (TTGT, NASDAQ), Internet Brands (Hellman Friedman), Paratek Adaptive RF (RIM), and Cardlytics (CDLX).

Prior to joining Polaris, Alan served as President and Board member of The Washington Post Company, a multimedia and education corporation. Earlier he served as Post Company CFO, President of Newsweek, and earlier held top marketing and finance positions at The Washington Post newspaper.

At The Post Company, Alan initiated and oversaw He also led investments in a successful portfolio of early stage companies, in cellular (Cellular One), distance learning (Kaplan), and educational software, digital media (WebTV) and e-commerce (, TicketmasterOnline,  Alan began his career at and later became a partner of The Boston Consulting Group, an international consulting firm specializing in corporate strategy.

In his not-for-profit activities, Alan is a member of the Massachusetts Institute of Technology’s Corporation (Executive Committee) and serves on the boards of (Harvard/MIT online education platform, and MIT Technology Review). Alan was instrumental in creating MIT Sandbox Innovation program and the Community Catalyst Leadership Program for MIT students.  Alan is Regent Emeritus (former Vice Chairman and Executive Committee) of the Smithsonian Institution Board of Regents. He was co-chair of the Smithsonian’s first-ever Capital Campaign.  He is also a member of The Council on Foreign Relations.

Alan received his Bachelor’s degree from the Massachusetts Institute of Technology; his Master’s degree from the Sloan School of Management, MIT; and his J.D., from Harvard Law School.

Alan and his wife, Terri, are relishing these special years when all the kids and grandkids are within a three-hour drive. When not visiting family, Alan stays fit with tennis and ever-challenged with golf.

Kenneth Wang ’71 graduated from MIT with an SB in economics (Course XIV) and received an MBA from Harvard Business School in 1976. He worked with Fairfield-Maxwell Ltd. and Bank of America in the area of shipping and ship financing for six years before joining a family-owned company, Oceanic Petroleum Corporation, in 1980.

Oceanic, since sold, was involved in the refining and marketing of oil and related petroleum products in Southeast Asia. Since 1983, Mr. Wang has been active as President of U.S. Summit Company, based in New York City. This company’s primary activities involve marketing and distribution of ethical pharmaceuticals, consumer products, and industrial chemicals in Southeast Asia. Other activities include development, ownership, and operation of golf-related properties in the tri-state NYC area.

Mr. Wang has been a member of the MIT Corporation since 2005. He served on numerous Corporation committees, including the MIT Architecture Visiting Committee (2005-2015) and the Corporation Development Committee (1990-2005), and has served in numerous leadership roles for the MIT Alumni Association, including as a Board Member from 2003 to 2005, President’s Committee Member from 2008 to 2012, and President from 2009 to 2010.