Name: Alexa Antopol
Title: Chief Intelligence Officer
Company Name: Fisher Dachs Associates
Years in your current field: 4
What professional organizations or associations are you a member of? SMPS
What was your greatest professional accomplishment in 2017?
Refraining from tracking down and murdering the authors of terribly written RFQ/Ps. Violence is never the answer, but the fantasy is less expensive than therapy or fine liquor. Additionally, I got my colleagues and management on board to purchase and use a CRM for the first time in the history of the company. I’m in the process of organizing data for migration now, and I can’t wait to begin using the system with them.
What was your most notable project 2017?
Helping to launch a new [spinoff] company, Agile Lens: a full-service VR design and consulting group specializing in custom solutions for a variety of clients. Agile Lens grew out of Fisher Dachs Associates’ use of virtual reality technologies and tools to help visualize the design process for a very specialized type of architecture: performing arts spaces. I’m now responsible for marketing and business development activities at both Agile Lens and Fisher Dachs, an interesting balancing act.
If you have had a mentor in your career, who was it and what did they teach you?
Through the 2014 SMPS-NY Mentorship Program, I was paired with Beth Portnoi Shaw of Carlton Architecture. Beth was a pillar of support and an excellent sounding board for me as I began working in a brand-new field and capacity (I was an opera librarian in my previous life). She patiently explained some much-needed basics, and gave me a solid foundation to build on as a business developer and marketer. More recently, I met Deena Baikowitz through an SMPS professional development program. Deena has helped me develop my extroversion and my communication skills, as well as coaching me in public speaking.
What trends are you seeing so far this year in your field?
I’m noticing a trend toward heightened interest in incorporating immersive technologies into the professional designer’s toolkit. Virtual and Immersive Reality are emerging technologies: there’s a lot of excitement and potential around them, and folks are experimenting with how to use it most efficiently to communicate with clients and collaborators. It’s exciting to be a part of this development, which may be the beginning of a deeper method of communication than we have previously experienced.
When I am not working I am…
Fundraising for the Cystic Fibrosis Foundation, a charity partner of New York Road Runners, as I train for and run the New York City Half-Marathon for the first time (not my first half-marathon, but this is my first go at this particular race). My childhood friend Amy has really struggled with her health recently due to cystic fibrosis, and this one of the ways in which I support her and the entire CF community.