Kimberly Dowdell has been elected president of the National Organization of Minority Architects (NOMA). Her term will officially start on January 1, 2019 and she will lead the organization for two years.
NOMA represents more than 900 minority architects and students across the country and aims to champion diversity within the design professions by promoting the excellence, community engagement, and professional development of its members. While African-Americans make up about 13 percent of the United States population, less than 2 percent of the country’s licensed architects are African-Americans.
Dowdell is a faculty member in the Taubman College of Architecture and Urban Planning at the University of Michigan. She is a licensed architect and partner with Century Partners, a Detroit-based real estate firm focused on equitable neighborhood revitalization. She previously co-founded Social Economic Environmental Design to identify, measure, and address triple-bottom-line issues during the design process. Additionally, in 2008, she established the annual community service project for NOMA, which has now hosted projects in 10 cities throughout the nation.
“I envision my presidency of NOMA confronting how the architecture profession as a whole can help people and minorities, in particular, with starting firms, growing firms, sunsetting firms or creating succession plans for firms, with a strong emphasis on legacy, social impact and wealth creation,” said Dowdell.
Dowdell holds a bachelor’s degree in architecture from Cornell University and a master of public administration degree in urban policy and real estate development from Harvard University’s John F. Kennedy School of Government.