Architects with the Most Historical Significance, by David Chirls

An architect serves both artistic and functional purposes, drafting plans for buildings that must not only be structurally sound and maximize productivity and spatial efficiency, but must also provide aesthetic appeal and reflect the identity of an individual or business.

Certain architects throughout history, including the ones listed below, have mastered their craft and achieved both of these aspects and are remembered for their significant contributions.

-Frank Lloyd Wright is often called America’s most reputable and famous architect. Never having attended any school for architecture, Wright is responsible for the design of more than 1,000 buildings, at least 400 of which still stand today.

-Spanish modernist Antoni Gaudi was a leading architect in his time, drawing influence from sculpture and nature to produce buildings that are distinctive and singular in design. The Spanish city of Barcelona named his Casa Calvet the Building of the Year in 1900.

Architect David Chirls has performed design and production for several firms, including Andrew Sheldon Architects, Maximillian Hayden Architects, and DiDonno Associates Architects, Inc.

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Storm King School Promotes the Educational Value of Athletic Competition By David Chirls

Participating in sports at the high school level helps children establish good exercise habits that will help them stay healthy for the rest of their lives. Beyond the physical benefits, however, athletics in school can provide boosts in other areas of children’s lives, such as the following benefits.

—Reinforcement of patience, persistence, and practice. These three skills are essential to achieving most feats in the adult world. Learning them in a concrete way through sports practice and team play helps familiarize children with them early.
—Opportunities to develop mentorship relationships. Bonding with adults can be difficult in a classroom setting, but on the field or court, barriers seem less intimidating. Positive adult role models can guide children through college and beyond.
—Learning to win and lose with grace. No matter what college and career path a student chooses, victories and failures await. The ability to gracefully handle both contributes to a more well-adjusted life.

About David Chirls

David Chirls currently serves as Vice Chair of the Board of Trustees of the Storm King School. In his private life, Mr. Chirls enjoys the athletic pursuits of skiing and playing golf.

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David Chirls: The Storm King School

Founded as a private institution in 1867 by Reverend Louis Ledoux, the Cornwall Heights School later came under the subsequent directorship of Carlos H. Stone and was redesignated the Stone School. Since 1923, it has borne its present name of the Storm King School, reflecting its location on the school’s namesake mountain. The school’s campus is nestled in the bucolic town of Cornwall-on-Hudson.

Located about 45 miles north of New York City on the west bank of the Hudson River, the school’s current enrollment stands at approximately 140 students. Originating from 13 countries and 10 states, the student population of the Storm King School is 41% female and 59% male, with 85% boarding students and 15% enrolled as day students.

The Storm King School strives for its students to develop a strong moral character and a sense of community centered on healthy choices. The institution features a curriculum of outstanding academics, but also an integrative experience that includes the arts, cultural activities, community service, and outdoor education. The Storm King School is affiliated with the Black Rock Consortium, a community group that oversees the nearby 3,600-acre Black Rock Forest.

Extensive information about the multifaceted offerings of the Storm King School is available at

David Chirls is the Vice Chair of the Board of Trustees of the Storm King School.

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Two Seed

Since retiring from his successful career as a business executive, David Chirls has been able to devote more time to his various charitable pursuits. Since 2011, Mr. Chirls has served as a senior advisor with Two Seed, an enterprise software company that specializes in facilitating employee volunteering initiatives that are designed to help businesses and foundations make a positive difference within their communities.

With representatives in Brooklyn, New York, and Berkley California, Two Seed strives to make volunteer community service easier by encouraging corporations, small companies, non-profit organizations and civic-minded individuals to work more closely with one another. Two Seed’s operating platform connects employees and employers, helping them to find local charitable opportunities and allowing them to share their experiences in a constructive fashion. By employing techniques pioneered by social media and gaming outlets, Two Seed provides an efficient and effective way for businesses to encourage their staff members’ volunteer endeavors and to recognize and reward their outstanding efforts.

David Chirls currently oversees strategic planning for Two Seed and further assists in managing the growth and development of the burgeoning Internet company.

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David Chirls Discusses Corporate Benefits of Employee Volunteerism

As a way of encouraging teamwork and strengthening communication, many companies are implementing employee volunteer programs as a way to give back to their communities. Below, retired architect and business communications executive David Chirls highlights ways office culture is shifting to include a variety of employee volunteer opportunities. Mr. Chirls serves as a senior advisor for Two Seed, a social media start-up fostering corporate community initiatives.

Q: On a broad scale, why is it important for businesses to implement employee volunteerism?
A: Through organizing volunteer opportunities, companies take an active role in building positive office morale for all team members and can create an improved corporate climate. In addition, establishing an employee volunteer program allows firms to become engaged in community-based problem solving that can carry over into the workplace.

Q: Can you identify some of the main incentives for companies that implement volunteer programs?
A: It’s important to remember that employees and the greater community benefit from volunteerism as much as companies. That said, many businesses offering a volunteer component report an improved public image and company reputation, a more motivated and productive staff, and an easier time retaining quality employees.

Q: Are there options for companies without extra financial resources to launch inexpensive volunteer initiatives?
A: Absolutely. Businesses can partner with their local Corporate Volunteer Councils across the country in order to find low-cost volunteer involvement programs. In addition, companies can choose to partner with local volunteer centers staffed with trained coordinators offering pre-established community connections.

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David Chirls: Promoting Volunteerism Through Social Media

In order to engage current volunteers and attract new ones, organizations need to utilize social media tools such as Facebook and Twitter. Social media platforms spread news about community engagement opportunities and can be extremely effective methods for promoting specific events and the missions of organizations. Sharing news and happenings through social media allows potential volunteers to learn about ways to help with relative anonymity. Nonprofit groups and charities are beginning to explore ways to raise funds through social media, in addition to their previous efforts to use these sites as recruiting tools.

When organizations attract volunteers through Facebook, Twitter, or similar social media networks, it is important to direct messages to people—whether students, professionals, or retirees—who can provide the particular kind of help needed. Also, an organization should be frank about the scope of the volunteer work, including the times and precise activities involved. Finally, mention some specific benefits for volunteers who choose to work with your organization, including interpersonal growth, networking, and skill development.

To begin recruiting volunteers through Facebook, your group can easily create a fan page on the site. Ask current volunteers to become fans of your page through “liking” it, and ask them to invite their friends to do the same. Specific volunteer opportunities and sign-up areas may be added to your Facebook page’s calendar. Follow up by sending individual messages to potential participants—doing so can begin a personalized conversation and confirm event attendance. Your group can generate hashtags on Twitter (for example, #volunteer) to alert followers to ways to become involved. Additionally, linking Facebook and Twitter pages to videos and photos of previous events may help define and personalize the culture of your organization.

David Chirls
is a senior advisor to Brooklyn, New York-based social media start-up Two Seed.

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