SDAF Membership: Creating Connection

When Nikki Kreibich contemplated renewing her SDAF membership, she thought about people.

She thought about connection.

A real estate agent at Whissel Realty Group, Kreibich cherishes the close friends she’s made through her SDAF membership. During the uncertainty of COVID-19, she’s cultivated them all the more.

“Even though we’re apart, we’re all staying in touch somehow,” she says. “For me, wanting to renew my membership had a lot to do with the fact that SDAF is where so much of my connection is.”

Connection has come chiefly from Kreibich’s involvement with Open House (OH!) San Diego, for whom she’s volunteered for four years. Each year, her involvement with the architectural and design showcase grows.

Open House has allowed Kreibich, an expert in historic and architecturally significant properties, to breathe new life into her architectural passion. As a member of the event’s planning committee for two years, she made an impact. In fact, through Kreibich’s connections at the Coronado Historical Association, she helped entice Coronado to participate in Open House last year for the first time.

This year, the program reaches seven new neighborhoods that are lesser-traveled in San Diego County, places like City Heights, San Marcos, National City and La Mesa, where Kreibich lives.

Immersing herself in the OH! community allows Kreibich to stay current on what’s happening in San Diego’s architectural community, empowering her professionally.

Nikki with other SDAF members during OH festivities last year

“It’s been a huge education,” she says. “I thought I knew San Diego County, but SDAF and OH! have really expanded my knowledge of San Diego buildings and their history.”

As OH! focuses on the theme Design + Community this year, it’s all the more fitting that the program has infused Kreibich’s life with a strong sense of community.

As a child, Kreibich liked to go for drives with her dad to observe architecture. As an adult, she still makes the drives. Like so much else, they’re rooted in Kreibich’s passion for architecture. After all, her not-so-distant ancestor was a San Diego founding father, and she has family roots in the Normal School designed by famed architect Irving Gill.

While OH’s penchant for educating and inspiring is one of its calling cards, the people behind the SDAF program make it special for Kreibich. It’s those very people who make an SDAF membership so worthwhile for her.

“The friendships I’ve made through SDAF are friendships for life,” she says.

For more on what Open House 2021 offers, check out our Open House page.

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San Diego Architectural Foundation is a 501(c)3 non-profit organization dedicated to education and promotion of outstanding architecture, planning and urban design throughout the San Diego region.

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