by Rosa Sheng, AIA
Last month, Architect Magazine featured an article referencing the 2014 Equity in Architecture survey as a catalyst for the conversation; “Closing the Gender Gap: Female architects identify ways that women can push through the traditional career choke points and advance through the ranks in a male-dominated field.” by Elizabeth Dickinson. Three architects were interviewed for their perspectives on the topic; Julia Murphy, AIA an Associate of SOM in New York City, Kelley Howell, AIA a newly named Partner of Pivot Architecture in Eugene, Oregon and Janet Tam, AIA founding Principal of Noll and Tam in San Francisco.
While the first comment to the article sparked a slurry of conversation, it highlighted that implicit bias is still deeply rooted in Architecture. The writer's comment highlights what still remains in professional practice; a pervasive "take it or leave it" attitude towards the "tradition" to endure long hours and low pay while disregarding the fact that those tropes are driving talent away from Architectural practice.
Concurrently, there was a twitter chat suggesting that we continue the conversation started by the Architect Magazine article with a broader spectrum of viewpoints within the profession. Let's get to the heart of the challenges in Architecture from the members of the profession that are rarely heard. In a similar spirit of spontaneity to the idea of the Archimom's Everyday Moments of Truth blog series, we are excited to bring you EQxD Get Real: True stories of Challenges and Resilience from diverse perspectives of architects and designers. Each day we will feature the stories of each person's challenges in the profession and what they learned from those experiences to inspire action for equitable practice in architecture. Follow #EQxDGetReal on Twitter this week to share all the stories.
by Melissa Daniel
Former AIA Diversity and Inclusion Council member, Melissa Daniel is passionate about changing the culture of the architecture profession. She spent the past three years as chair of the Women in Architecture Series serving AIA|DC, DCNOMA and AIA|NOVA WIA Committee. She was selected in 2012 for the Emerging Architect Award by AIA|DC, 2013 Young Architect of the year by DCCEAS and 2014 Leading Women under 40 by Maryland’s The Daily Record.
by LaShae A. Ferguson, Assoc. AIA
LaShae is the owner of L.A. Design Collective, LLC, An Architectural Design & Drawing Co., and graduate of the University of the District of Columbia. LaShae has co-managed design-construction projects worth over $8 million total. When not working, she enjoys spending time with her family, cooking and traveling.
by Katie E. Ray
Katie is an emerging professional who currently lives in Arlington, VA and is an APM for a firm just outside of Washington DC. Her projects currently range from restaurants, bars, spas, and country clubs. She is a mother and yogi; on the weekend she loves spending time building lighting and furniture from salvaged materials.
by Karen E. Williams AIA, LEED AP BD+C, NCARB
Karen E. Williams is consistently working to educate people about the inner benefits of the architecture community. She is an Adjunct Professor at the University of Oregon where she teaches Revit and Professional Practice. As a means to be professional example, Karen is on the AIA-SWO board and supports STAnDD a local student group. She joined PIVOT Architecture in 2014 as a Project Architect after practicing on the east coast for 9 years.
by Tara Imani, AIA
Tara Imani Designs, LLC is a premier full-service architecture and interiors solo practice, founded and led by Tara Imani, AIA. Ms. Imani is a licensed Architect in the State of Texas and a graduate of The Ohio State University with a Bachelor of Science Degree in Architecture. Ms. Imani is also an active voice on social media and advocate for Equity in Architecture.