*Selected Comments

THANKS to ALL (100+ as of October 2011) who have participated in the development of AIA Diversity / Then+Now+NEXT by sharing their experience and observations.  Please enjoy the selection shown below.

"The P/A [Progressive Architecture] Awards and its juries record some of the progress. From 1954 through 1972, just 2 women served on all those juries. For all those when I was editor (1973-1996 juries), there was at least one woman every year." - John Morris Dixon (e-mail to Marga Rose Hancock 9/25/13)

I have long been embarrassed by the under-representation of women and minorities in the profession of architecture, but those are only two of many issues I believe the profession needs to address in order to assume the proper profession of leadership I believe it can truly be.” – former US Congressmember/Ambassador Richard Swett (e-mail to Marga Rose Hancock 9/27/11)

"I believe the situation is improving since the time I wrote my book Designing for Diversity, but still at a snail's pace. I have seen some of the recent AIA diversity statistics and while the picture is slightly better than it was 10 years ago, it still has a very long ways to go. I still believe that compared to our counterparts in other professions such as law, medicine, and engineering, architecture, with respect to diversity still lags far behind. ... I believe the architecture profession will continue to diversify itself but at a very very slow pace. It may take decades for our profession to catch up with our counterparts in other professions such as law and medicine." - Kathryn Anthony (AIA Diversity History/Stories NEXT Survey response, 9/2011)

"I feel that we are close to a tipping point, at which time we will finally have more women in leadership positions, in the C-suites, as the world recognizes that different styles of leadership are valuable, and the current models of leadership are not very successful." - Kate Schwennsen, AIA President 2008, Dean at Clemson School of Architecture
(AIA Diversity History/Stories Survey response, 9/2011)

"The future looks dim! Our educational process, the narrow definition of  'architect' and a licensing path fraught with roadblocks conspire to discourage entering the profession. My advice continues to be that if you love problem solving and want to make a difference in the world, design thinking is key and our profession has the greatest potential & possibility. However, the profession will never change until there is a greater connection between the business case for diversity and an increased valuing of the profession as a whole." - Anne Laird-Blanton, AIA Board member (
(AIA Diversity History/Stories NEXT Survey response, 9/2011)

"I think diversity will become less of an issue as the profession gets more diverse. Clients are already looking for ways to distinguish us from each other and I think being diverse only gives us an edge." - Tammy Eagle Bull, AIA Diversity Task Force 1993-95
(AIA Diversity History/Stories Survey response, 9/2011)

"Academia needs to start opening the opportunities for more diversity and learn that Architecture belongs to everyone NOT just one culture." - Guido C. Seoanes Perla, U. of Michigan student, NOMAS Vice President
(AIA Diversity History/Stories Survey response, 9/2011)

“Diversity sucks! AIA programs continue to lump together women and minority architects, when in fact the issues and needs of these groups are substantially different.  The situation of African American architects has distinct characteristics still not understood or addressed. ” – Robert T. Coles (phone conversation with Marga Rose Hancock 9/30/11)

"I believe most of the diversity has come to our profession via scholarships, and our commitment to scholarships seems to be waning." - Stanford R. Britt
(AIA Diversity History/Stories Survey response, 9/2011)

"I see a good amount of progress for women and LGBT folks, less for minorities and almost none for people with disabilities." - Jean Zagrodnik, current AIA Board Diversity Councilmember
(AIA Diversity History/Stories Survey response, 9/2011)

"My first AIA conference in Philadelphia [2000] was a horrible experience in that I was the only black woman in a sea of white males. It was very lonely. I did not go back to an AIA Convention for several years after that." - Kathy Dixon
(AIA Diversity History/Stories Survey response, 9/2011)