Norma Merrick Sklarek, FAIA

Norma Merrick Sklarek (April 15, 1928 - ) born in New York, New York. She is an African American architect where she earned B. Arch. from Barnard College (part of Columbia University). She was the first black woman to be licensed as an architect in the United States with certification in the state of New York in 1954 and then in the state of California in 1962. She was the first black woman to be elected Fellow of the American Institute of Architects in 1980. Another first, she was the first African-American director of architecture at Gruen and Associates in Los Angeles, CA and she also worked with the Jon Jerde Partnership.

In 1985, she became the first African-American woman architect to form her own architectural firm: Siegel, Sklarek, Diamond which was the largest woman-owned and mostly woman-staffed architectural firm in the United States. Among Sklarek's designs are the San Bernardino City Hall in San Bernardino, California, the Fox Plaza in San Francisco, Terminal One at the Los Angeles International Airport and the Embassy of the United States in Tokyo, Japan.[2]
Semi-retired today, she currently serves on the California Architects Board. She also formerly served for several years as Chair of the AIA National Ethics Council. In her honor, Howard University offers the Norma Merrick Sklarek Architectural Scholarship Award.


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