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Thursday, 10 December 2015

Open-City announces new Director Rory Olcayto, Editor of the Architects’ Journal to take up post in March 2016

Open-City announces new Director Rory Olcayto, Editor of the Architects’ Journal to take up post in March 2016

We are delighted to announce the appointment of Rory Olcayto as our new Director who will take over from founder Victoria Thornton OBE in March 2016.

Rory is an award winning editor, journalist and critic and has studied and practised architecture before becoming a journalist. He joined the Architects’ Journal in 2008.
Victoria will step down from her current role, instead taking over the Open House Worldwide programme and the Open-City Impact Study for its 25th anniversary year.

Thornton founded Open-City in 1992 to champion good design in creating a liveable city and promoting popular support for the capital’s building design and architecture. Since then the organisation has grown to be the largest of its kind in the UK and supports a variety of initiatives including Architecture in Schools, to teach young children about the built environment, Accelerate, to encourage teenagers from disadvantaged backgrounds to study architecture and the week long sustainability showcase Green Sky Thinking.

Open City chairman Crispin Kelly said:
“We are delighted to be appointing Rory as the new Director for Open City. He succeeds Victorian Thornton our founder, and will be building on the foundations laid by her. We were incredibly impressed by his proven campaigning skills and his desire to engage with all sections of the community in promoting better places to live and work.”

Rory Olcayto said:
“I have been a fan of Open City for many years. Victoria and her team have created an organisation which uniquely has the confidence of the public and the profession. I see my role as expanding on this work and engaging the very broadest range of people in the discussion to ensure that London becomes a more equitable City.”

Meanwhile, Tony Pidgley, trustee of Open City commented:
“The property industry needs to listen and debate with ordinary Londoners what kind of places we want to create. Open City is a fantastic way to do this and Rory is a great fit for the charity. When it comes to architecture, he’s one of the best communicators around. I think he will help us engage with an incredible range of people about the impact of design and development on all our lives.”

About Rory Olcayto
Rory is an award-winning journalist and critic and editor of the Architects’ Journal. Before his career in journalism, Rory studied architecture at the University of Strathclyde, worked in practice in Glasgow, Liege and Istanbul, and as a designer in the videogames industry. He also led a first-year design studio at Strathclyde University for two years and today is a guest critic at a number of UK and Irish universities. Rory is a regular commentator on radio and television, and in national newspapers, and regularly speaks at industry events. Rory has been a BCI Awards judge since 2009, a RIBA Awards judge and in 2015, was a member of the Stirling Prize jury. In 2015, under his editorship, the AJ was nominated for an unprecedented 12 media awards, winning four, with Rory picking up IBP magazine of the year (for the second time in a row) and architecture writer of the Year (the third time he has won the award).

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