To kick off Archtober, the AIANY Women in Architecture committee hosted Womxn to the Front: Design, Activism and Lessons from the Creative Frontlines with keynote speaker, design strategist and activist De Nichols. De shared her insights and a collective call-to-action for womxn designers to further activate our vision, voice, and power during the current moments of economic, public health, and racial crises facing the U.S. Through four stages in her presentation- Grounding, Sharing, Organizing and Calling, De explained that “Womxn to the Front” means, “tending to the cores and intersections of our entangled issues and ensuring we do not leave our people behind or ignore their contributions”. She also stressed on long-term support and partnership as a means for progress, by introducing the audience to many of her incredible projects across varying scales.

The presentation was followed by a conversation with Kavyashri Cherala, AIANY WIA Media & Communications Manager. The discussion highlighted the role of womxn leadership at the collective Design as Protest, the brainstorming process behind the key Design Justice Demands, how organizations can get involved, hold themselves accountable to enable gender parity in the workplace, and the ways more inclusive public spaces can be designed for protest, gathering and celebration. Kavya emphasized on the central role of women in many protests around the world- recently in Belarus, Sudan, India, Brazil and the US, and rounded off the discussion by moderating several insightful questions that our audience put forth.

We thank our co-sponsors, Beyer Blinder Belle and FXCollaborative, for their generosity and support in making this event possible.

The presentation and panel discussion will be available to view on our webpage shortly.