Continuing the recent spate of successful women in the architecture industry is Yolanda Reyes, who won the Likha gold medal architecture award in the Phillipines on April, 10. 

Reyes has previously represented Australia, New Zealand and Asia as a council member at the Union of International Architects and has been awarded a special Cultural Award by the Australian Department of Foreign Affairs in the past.

The United Architects of the Philippines (UAP) consider the Likha gold award the highest of its kind in the Philippines and Reyes is the first woman to receive the honour in its 13 year history.

“The Likha Gold Medal Award is the highest distinction to be bestowed upon a fellow, who has adhered to the highest standards of professional and ethical conduct, practiced in excellence and prestige the architectural profession, has rendered distinguished contribution and service to the UAP, and has performed exceptional achievements and active participation in the concern of the community, government and country,” says the UAP.

Reyes is the principal architect at her own Reyes Planning + Architecture firm. Reyes and her husband/partner have designed hundreds of projects ranging from large scale commercial to smaller residential ventures.

The pair have also worked in collaboration with international partners and have been involved in numerous in the Philippines and around the world.

They have designed, facility planned and master developed university campuses, airports, shopping malls, mixed use developments, hospitals, condominiums, research complexes, retreat and religious centres, churches and residences

Her work on the Caleruega Church in the Philippines is international renowned and is also award winning.

Reyes’ achievements:

  • Served as the first lady national president of UAP and the first lady chairman of the Architects Regional Council Asia (Arcasia) with 18 member countries.
  • The first Filipino to hold position in the Union of International Architects (UIA), as council member representing Asia, Australia and New Zealand.
  • Director of UIA Region IV Work Program on Responsible Architecture. 
  • 2009, recognized as the first Southeast Asian lady awardee of the Honorary Fellow of the American Institute of Architects
  • Chair of the ASEAN Architects Council (AAC) with 10 member countries 2013
  • Chairman of the Commission of Higher Education, Technical Panel in Architecture, Fine Arts and other related fields,
  • Member of the Professional Regulatory Board of Architecture of the Professional Regulation Commission
  • Chairman of the Environment cluster of City of San Fernando, Pampanga Multi-Sectoral Government Council (MSGC),
  • Dean of the University of Santo Tomas College of Architecture and Fine Arts in 1991 to 2000 also making her the first lady Dean the institution.