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Newsletter | Mar/Apr 2019

Volume 47:2
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In this issue:
Remembering: Spring Ruth Friedlander 1943 - 2019 - Bridget Basham and Wendy Bertrand
EMPOWERING - AIA Central Valley

Remembering: Spring Ruth Friedlander 1943 - 2019

by Bridget Basham and Wendy Bertrand    |    Share #1348

Spring R. Friedlander, Cornelio Terraza and Bridget Basham after a day of planting vegetables

This remembrance of Spring R. Friedlander's life is a collage of quotes and details from their own written account. The full account ( includes their living arrangements, family history, personal relationships with women and men, health issues, activism in the womens and queer movements and included thoughts about how they lived their values. The following gem self describes Spring R.'s essence.

"My core values:
My being pivotal
Eco village
Hands on work
Living collectively
As a planner/ contractor

The author's have reduced the writings willfully left, into this remembrance of numerous unique and professional accomplishments including highlights of Spring R.'s participation in the Organization of Women Architects and Design Professionals.

Spring R. was born July 24, 1943 and raised in Chicago. They attended the University of Wisconsin, Madison 1961-65 earning a Bachelor of Science. After college, Spring R. was employed as a planner in White Plains, Westchester County, New York. Shortly after, they obtained a Master's in Urban Planning from Hunter College CUNY 1969, and at some point, migrated to the West Coast where Spring R. became a coordinator of Bay Area Women Planners, 1972.

"I entered the women's movement in 1969" wrote Friedlander.

Wendy Bertrand remembers, "In 1972, during my last year as a graduate architecture student at UC Berkeley, then Ruth Friedlander, led a consciousness raising talk in a living room with standing room only that I [Wendy B] attended and was motivated to learn more about the women's movement and the possibility of starting an organization of like-minded women in architecture, their response to a question I asked, became one of the influences that led to the founding of the Organization of Women Architects in 1973."

"I changed my name from Ruth Friedlander to Spring Ruth Friedlander in 1976."

"In Oct of 1980, I decided to become a tradeswoman. I'd been looking for another career for four years and realized in a flash of light, that i had been drawn to the trades for my whole life, had enough experience doing the work to know that I was decent at doing it, I would not have to sit at a desk, which was hard for me to do, I could get paid for using some of my excess physical energy, it was well paid, and by age 37 I was confident enough to handle the discrimination expected as a woman in a man's field.
I joined the Skilled Workers Resource Network, a support group for us who were beginning [as] self-employed construction workers [where] I got to be the token woman. So I felt welcomed which felt wonderful. I in turn welcomed women who joined later. age 37 I was confident enough to handle the discrimination expected as a woman in a man's field.

I obtained a certificate in carpentry/ residential construction from Peralta Community Colleges in the San Francisco East Bay 1982. From 1989 - 1991, I taught carpentry [part] time and functioned as the administrator for the Carpentry program at Laney College, and taught a class of women being trained to enter construction. The students completely remodeled a gutted duplex that was sold to finance the program. The students were well instructed by me, as confirmed by their next teacher, Cynthia Correia, who was hired as the first tenured tradesperson.
In 2003, I was certified as a Green Remodeler, active in the Green Remodelers Guild. It evolved into Build it Green, and [I joined] the Organization of Women Architects [and Design Professionals]. In 2008, I was certified in Green Building Professional Training. In October 2009, I was certified as an EPA Lead Certified Renovator.
In 2014, I retired as a contractor, carpenter, and house remodeler, after 34 years."

Bertrand recalls that Spring R. regularly attended the September OWA+DP Retreat and mentioned being pleased with the intellectual conversations that were different from those in other groups. Also Spring R. lobbied for and proudly hosted a well attended OWA+DP holiday party in their Oakland co-op house.

Architect Jean Nilsson nominated Spring R. Friedlander to the OWA+DP Steering Committee as a needed long-time member in 2016. "Spring is a former city planner who is now working currently as a contractor. She is interested in living collectively in co-housing and is active in the LGBT community. She is interested in joining the steering committee because she not only has deep knowledge of the organization, but also has insight to future programs."
~ OWA+DP Steering Committee minutes of October 25, 2016.

Spring R. and I (Bridget B.) were neighbors and often spent Friday nights together at Spring's apartment in East Oakland, planning OWA+DP's upcoming #me too and you event of July 2018. Mainly we were talking big ideas and sharing idealisms over Spring R.s favorite take-out, Battambangs.

"I put together the agenda for the Organization of Women Architects and Design Professionals held in San Francisco, July 14th this year. There were breakout sessions in which stories of harassment were shared, as well as celebration of male champions of change, and a workshop on how to disrupt an entrenched workplace culture. I shared my background as a city planner, a housing remodeler, and having taught construction at a high school and at a college as well as reconstructing my own shared house".

Spring R. in action at the #me too & you OWA+DP event July 14th 2018

Bridget Basham remembers, "Spring R. and I first met at the OWA+DP retreat in 2017. I was immediately drawn to their quirkiness and intelligence. We got to know each other during the 2018 Women's March in Oakland. I remember keeping pace with Spring R., which is to say was moving very slowly. Spring R. was a dedicated participator in the women's movement in spite of a body that was becoming increasingly less-able. It was during this slow walk that I connected with Spring R.'s deep humanity, and sageness."

Spring R. at Women�s March 2018 in Oakland

"As of 1/20/18 OWADP Org. of Women Architects and Design Professionals has the tentative goal of doing what we can in our professional roles to contribute to creating a sex positive culture and still protect against predatory behavior," wrote Spring R. at this time.

Spring R. and I (Bridget B.) believed that women needed to provide and acquire tools outside of entrenched societal roles, expectations and behaviors. In this respect, we hoped to transcend the #Me Too movement by providing tools as simple as creating supportive environments for conversation, by encouraging leading from places of confidence and strength, and understanding that women's struggle is bigger than a single "one" and that we women, are allies and each-others' greatest resource for support and turning the tide on prejudice.

Spring R.'s final writings included this exit-plan/ end of life logic: "MY REASONS FOR SCHEDULING ASSISTED SUICIDE WITH DIGNITAS (in Switzerland) are as follows, I have been surprised that ending my life while still somewhat functional has become one of my main personal and political causes over the past 2.5 years. I have been saying for decades that at some point in the aging process, prior to when my body fully closes down, and while I still have my mental faculties, I will choose not to create another phase of my life."

*The authors have respected Spring R.'s expressed preference to use to use R. after Spring, and to use the 3rd person plural pronoun their or they in general, however that we would write a remembrance in the OWA+DP Newsletter was never discussed before her exit.


by Inge Horton    |    Share #1346

Recording your history is rewarding however it takes some preparation to preserve your work records and donate them to an archive, but in June two archivists from the International Archive of Women in Architecture (IAWA) will come to the Bay Area and help you!
Younger and older women architects are encouraged to think about filling the gap in architectural history by saving their work and contributing it to an archive.

IAWA archivists are coming to San Francisco
Over the years, I have often talked to OWA Members about the International Archive of Women in Architecture (IAWA) at Virginia Tech in Blacksburg, VA and urged them to donate their records to honor their professional legacy, fill a gap in architectural history and proudly promote themselves. Although we generally only think of older practitioners as potential donors we would also encourage younger women to consider their legacy and preserve their work. The collections will help researchers in architecture, landscape architecture, architectural history and other social science fields with their research. The IAWA has also created several programs such as the Milka Prize, which entice researchers and students to use the collections.

Among the many national and international collections which you may find in the IAWA is a large collection of our very own OWA member and CWED President Sigrid Lorenzen Rupp,. You can also discover over twenty collections of other women architects and related design professionals and their male office partners of the San Francisco Bay Area. The size of the collections ranges from extremely large such as Sigrid's 219 cu. ft. to small collections such as a resume in the IAWA Small Collections of internationally known women architects such as Raili Pietila from Finland. Some architects so far donated part of their work as a sort of downpayment and the IAWA hopes that they will contribute their remaining documents.

The exciting news is that the two archivists, Samantha Winn and Aaron Purcell, Ph.D. will come to the San Francisco Bay Area in late June of 2019 and be available to consult with women architects and, if applicable, their male office partners, about their donation of records to the IAWA. They will give an introductory presentation for OWADP members and others interested in the Archive at a public meeting on:

Thursday, June 27, 2019 at 5.30 p.m
in the Stong Conference Room on Floor 1
of the San Francisco Main Library

The archivists will be available for individual consultations either Thursday June 27, or Friday June 28 at locations yet to be determined. They will EVEN accept collections you have selected and packed for mailing and they will ship them from here to the IAWA so that you do not have to deal with it nor pay for it. This event will make it easier for you to make a donation of your work to the IAWA.

If you have any questions, please contact Inge Horton, former IAWA Board Member and longtime OWADP member, at or 415 681-7594.

OWA+DP Retreat 2019: Housing and Gentrification

 Share #1352

13-15 September 2019
Westerbeke Ranch, Sonoma, California

Join us for a weekend of conversation, fun, exercise, hiking, swimming, hot tub, massage, music, art, and delicious food. Give everybody a chance to know you better, develop closer ties with friends and colleagues, and return home inspired by new ideas from our group.

The Program:
Lecture by Clara Iraz-bal Zurita entitled Venezuela's Grand Housing Mission: Reversed Gentrification in Caracas and Implications for the US. Clara Iraz-bal is the Director of the Latinx and Latin American Studies Program and Professor of Planning with tenure in the Department of Architecture, Urban Planning + Design (AUPD) at the University of Missouri, Kansas City (UMKC). Before joining UMKC in 2016, she was the Latin Lab Director and Associate Professor of Urban Planning in the Graduate School of Architecture, Planning and Preservation at Columbia University, New York City. She received her PhD from the University of California at Berkeley and has two master degrees. In her research and teaching, she explores the interactions of culture, politics, and place making, and their impact on community development and socio-spatial justice in Latin American cities and Latinx and immigrant communities. She is the author of Urban Governance and City Making in the Americas: Curitiba and Portland (Ashgate, 2005) and the editor of Transbordering Latin Americas: Liminal Places, Cultures, and Powers (T) Here (Routledge 2014) and Ordinary Places, Extraordinary Events: Citizenship, Democracy, and Public Space in Latin America (Routledge 2008, 2015).

Panel discussion moderated by Cammy White on Social Equity and Affordable Housing.

Yuriza Jared with the Sang Matiz band Latin themed music for Saturday evening's entertainment.

Art project:
Watercolor workshop organized by Judy Rowe.

Saturday, in preparation for the musical performance in the evening, Anastasia Gordon from Amor do Samba will lead a Samba dance workshop. At the end of the weekend, on Sunday morning, Lisa Murray, Yoga Community, will lead us in a relaxing session of Yin yoga which targets connective tissue.

Book your reservation now: We have room for 50 guests.

Accommodations include access to gardens, swimming pool, adobe dining hall, and shared bedrooms in rustic cabins which all set in beautiful, Sonoma, wine country. Financial assistance for scholarships is available for students and those without employment. We encourage participants to join OWA+DP.

Fill out a registration form online here and pay with PayPal or send your registration form and fee to Heather Sprague below.

Contact retreat coordinator T. Rachel Slonicki at Little Elephant Architecture with questions. Email or call 510.704.0808 Rachel.

1732-OWA DP 2019 Retreat Registration Form.pdf


by AIA Central Valley    |    Share #1353

What are your greatest challenges related to your career?
Join the Chapter for a day of conversation about growth and leadership with industry leaders and interactive activities.

AIA Central Valley is excited to announce a new conference scheduled for Thursday, June 20th that is designed to inspire, encourage and empower people in the architectural and design industry.

Whether you are early in your career and looking for tools for successful communication, a firm leader interested in mentoring your staff, or an established architect ready to move into that leadership position, Empowering is for you.

We have invited some remarkable leaders in the equity and leadership sector to share their knowledge with us, including keynote presenter Emily Grandstaff-Rice, FAIA, current Chair of the AIA Equity in Architecture Commission. We will also bring the conversation local with a panel discussion including key firm principals in the Sacramento region.

We know you are likely incredibly busy, but you won't want to miss out on this inspirational event. We hope that each man and woman who attends leaves feeling excited and ready to take their careers to the next level, with confidence.

More information including speakers and schedules here.

Click here to register.

AIASF Small Firms, Great Projects: 15th Edition

 Share #1354

Early Deadline: Friday, May 24, 1:00 PM
Final Deadline: Friday, June 7, 1:00 PM

Open to architecture, landscape architecture, interior architecture, and architectural lighting firms with 19 or fewer employees, Small Firms, Great Projects provides a platform for small firms to feature their best work in print, online, and in a companion exhibition.

You can view the 2019 program's submission details and a submission template here.

Architecture, Landscape architecture and interior design firms working on residential, retail, small business, or institutional projects.
Firms must be a local small firm with 19 or fewer employees.
Firms can submit one project for a one-page layout or two projects for a two-page spread. Entry fees are per project. Completion date not required for projects.
Firms may submit projects that have been previously published in Small Firms, Great Projects or other publications.

**Membership Discount**

 Share #1355

We are thrilled to announce that the number of our members has been doubled compared to the last two years.

Welcome New Members!
Valentin Nguyen
Shiva Mendez
Oliver Shay
Shannon O'Brien
Julia Arria
loni gray
Jess Corr

Refer a friend and each of you get $10 off of your membership cost.
Please renew your membership if you have not already done so.

Pay online here or fill out the form below and mail it with your payment.

Membership types and associated annual membership fees are as follows:
Regular: $70
Supporting: $125 or more
Student: $35
Out-of-Town: $35; >100 miles radius

Make checks payable to Organization of Women Architects, and write Membership 2019 in the memo line.

Mail to:
Organization of Women Architects and Design Professionals
P.O. Box 10078
Berkeley, CA 94709

If you have any further question, please contact our membership admin, Leslie Golden.

1732-membership renewal form.pdf
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