Chicago Women in Architecture Foundation Names
Kathryn H. Anthony, PhD, as 2020 Lifetime Achievement Award Winner

Chicago (July 20, 2020)—Chicago Women in Architecture Foundation (CWAF), together with Chicago Women in Architecture (CWA), are honored to present Kathryn H. Anthony, PhD, with the 2020 CWAF Lifetime Achievement Award. As the world unites in a call for change and equity, CWA recognizes the work of Professor Anthony for her career-long dedication to equity advocacy and her contributions to the advancement of architectural discourse and scholarship.

“This year’s award winner exemplifies the spirit of the day and represents CWA and CWAF’s commitment to listening and examining how to better serve all of our communities,” said Patricia Saldaña Natke, Chair of the CWAF Board of Directors. “We recognize the opportunity, and our responsibility, to serve as a forum and resource for equitable practices for Chicagoland.”

Over her 40-year career as an educator, researcher, and author, Professor Anthony has amplified the conversation about how spaces and places affect people—chiefly addressing issues of gender and diversity in design. Anthony’s work has critically challenged and enacted change around the dialogue and approach to architectural education and practice. From her publication of Design Juries on Trial: The Renaissance of the Design Studio (Van Nostrand Reinhold, 1991), to Designing for Diversity: Gender, Race, and Ethnicity in the Architectural Profession (University of Illinois Press, 2001), to her recent book, Defined by Design: The Surprising Power of Hidden Gender, Age, and Body Bias in Everyday Products and Places (Prometheus, 2017), Anthony advocates for recognition of experience across lines of difference.

In 2010, she testified before the US House of Representatives’ Committee on Oversight and Government Reform in support of the bipartisan Restroom Gender Parity in Federal Buildings Act. Her insight can also be found in features with ABC World News with Diane Sawyer, Chicago Tribune, The Economist, the Guardian, Los Angeles Times, National Public Radio (NPR), New York Times, Wall Street Journal, Washington Post, and elsewhere.

Anthony holds the lifetime title of Association of Collegiate Schools of Architecture (ACSA) Distinguished Professor at the School of Architecture, University of Illinois at Urbana- Champaign (UIUC), where she is the longest serving female faculty member; former—and first woman—Chair of the Design Program Faculty; former Chair of the Chancellor’s Committee on the Status of Women; former Co-Chair of the Provost’s Gender Equity Council; and current faculty of the Department of Gender and Women’s Studies.

Anthony earned a doctorate in architecture (1981) and a bachelor’s degree in psychology (1976), both from the University of California, Berkeley. She lectures extensively in the US and abroad, including recent speaking engagements at: Carnegie Mellon University, Cornell University, University of Notre Dame, Princeton University, and Technological University Dublin. Author of over 100 publications, Anthony’s research is extensive and has been supported by organizations such as the Graham Foundation for Advanced Studies in the Fine Arts.

Conferring the CWAF Lifetime Achievement Award on Anthony continues the wide acknowledgement of her impactful career, including national awards from the American Institute of Architects (AIA) and the Environmental Design Research Association (EDRA).

Upon notification of her selection for the award Anthony reflected, “My longtime connections to Chicago Women in Architecture and participation in CWA retreats years ago inspired much of my research. I am deeply honored to receive this prestigious award. It is in recognition not only of my own professional accomplishments but also those of CWA—a groundbreaking organization whose dedicated leaders have promoted diversity in our profession for over four decades.”

Due to COVID-19, the 2020 CWA Spring Brunch—where the award would typically be presented—was postponed in March. A newly announced Virtual Award Ceremony celebrating the catalytic work and career of Kathryn H. Anthony, PhD, CWAF 2020 Lifetime Achievement Award Winner, will take place on Sunday, August 16, 2020, 10:30 a.m.–12:30 p.m. Information regarding the event—including ticketing and sponsorship—is on the website, Alternatively, click HERE to learn more and register for the event.


Established in 2017, the Chicago Women in Architecture Foundation Lifetime Achievement Award honors distinguished women who have positively contributed as a member of Chicago Women in Architecture and have supported issues faced by women architects throughout their careers. Award recipients are nominated and selected by CWA and CWAF as recognition of the awardee’s impact on the lives and careers of others in the architecture community, inspiring new generations of women to engage with CWA and the field of architecture.


CWA is a 501(c)(6) nonprofit membership organization founded in 1974 to establish community, mentorship, visibility, and advocacy for women working in the field of architecture and related professions. Through the ongoing efforts of the entirely volunteer-led organization, this mission is realized by offering educational, professional, and social networking events; organizing and sponsoring lectures in partnership with likeminded organizations; and awarding annual scholarships to undergraduate women architecture students in their final year of study.

In 2003, CWAF was incorporated as a 501(c)(3) nonprofit private foundation. Today, CWAF continues its support of CWA initiatives by raising funds to expand scholarship offerings as well as fundraising for events and special projects that further the careers for women in and around the field of architecture.