Habari Gani is Swahili for: “What’s the news?”
The NEWS for you is: EMPOWERMENT.
Here’s your EMPOWERMENT LESSON for the week of January 14:
This Week’s Black History Icon: 5 Things To Know About Norma Skalarek
In ADDITION to being the FIRST African American Woman to Become a Licensed Architect, Norma Skalarek:
- Received her Architecture degree from Columbia University’s School of Architecture in 1950; she was one of only 20 students to graduate from the program
- Was also the FIRST Black woman to receive a fellowship from the American Institute of Architects
- In 1985, helped form an all-female architecture firm: Siegel, Skalarek, Diamond; at that time, it was one of the largest female-owned architectural practices in the U.S.
- Helped design the American Embassy (Tokyo), California Mart, Fox Plaza, Terminal One at LAX, the Pacific Design Center, San Bernardino City Hall, and the Mall of America in Minneapolis
- Was the first African American woman to be licensed as an architect in California in 1962, and New York in 1954
Extra tidbits: Skalarek passed the entire 7-part, 4-day, 36-hour architect’s exam on the FIRST try, a rare feat at that time, especially for an African American. The Library of Congress and the American Institute of Architects selected her work on the San Bernardino City Hall as of the nation’s Outstanding City Halls. Skalarek’s writings include “Women in Architecture”, written for the Encyclopedia of Architecture & Construction.