Today, the AIA honored its 2011 Gold Medal-winner, Fumihiko Maki. The Japanese architect who has studied, practiced, and taught architecture in the U.S. discussed significant commissions of note. Maki said that one of his first major commissions came to him by way of a Japanese client he met many years earlier, during his early voyage from Japan to Seattle. Eighteen past AIA presidents honored Maki, and the AIA showed a video of highlight’s from his illustrious life and career. Continuing the theme of rebuilding that has influenced several discussions at this year’s convention, Maki discussed Japan’s devastating earthquake and tsunami, saying that he hopes to devote himself to helping people by working to build places that benefit them directly.