Michael Arad’s design for the National September 11 Memorial at the World Trade Center site, titled “Reflecting Absence,” was selected by the Lower Manhattan Development Corporation from among more than 5,000 entries submitted in an international competition held in 2003. Mr. Arad joined Handel Architects as a Partner in April 2004 where he worked on realizing the Memorial design as a member of the firm.
A native of Israel, Arad worked for Kohn Pedersen Fox in New York City before joining the Design Department of the New York City Housing Authority, where he was working during the Memorial competition.
In 2006, Mr. Arad was one of six recipients of the Young Architects Award of the American Institute of Architects. In 2012, he was awarded the AIA Presidential Citation for his work on the National September 11 Memorial. In addition, he was also honored in 2012 by the Lower Manhattan Cultural Council with the Liberty Award for Artistic Leadership. His work on the Memorial was recognized with Honor Awards from the AIA and ASLA.
In 2017 Mr. Arad was selected to design a memorial to the victims of the 2015 Charleston church massacre at the Mother Emanuel AME Church in Charleston, South Carolina.