Samuel "Sambo" Mockbee, FAIA (Dec. 23,1944-Dec. 30, 2001)
2004 AIA GOLD MEDAL: As the co-founder of Auburn University's architecture program, Rural Studio, the Alabama architect carved out a new aesthetic of architecture focusing on rural places and the underserved people who reside in them.
From the official website of Samuel Mockbee:
Over the 13-years of its existence, Samuel Mockbee and Coleman Coker’s architectural firm provided a necessary forum to create entirely unique and exclusively local constructions. The projects Mockbee Coker Architects created simultaneously garnered critical praise and exposed the social and economic contradictions Mockbee initially set out to change.
Mockbee and Coker’s work set the framework of each architect’s approach, using largely recycled materials and expressing modern themes. Nevertheless, Mockbee’s greatest undertaking came with his return to Auburn University and the formation of the Rural Studio [which Mockbee co-founded with D. K. Ruth].