Join the New York Chapter of the National Organization of Minority Architects (nycoba | NOMA), the J. Max Bond Center of City University of New York, and the AIANY Diversity and Inclusion Committee for the annual J. Max Bond Jr. Lecture. Established in 2010, this design talk honors the memory of J. Max Bond, Jr., FAIA, NOMA, an architect, partner at Davis Brody Bond, advocate, teacher, and trailblazer. The lecture addresses issues that were important to Bond, including equity, inclusive design, and global cultures, in particular Africa (Ghana).
This year’s lecture will explore the intersectionality of inclusivity and community in architecture and design, with a focus on grassroots movements aimed at expanding access and equity in the design professions. Featured speakers will discuss their individual and organizational work to raise social awareness and encourage the active participation needed for increased equity in the architecture and design industries.
Anik Pearson, AIA, LEED AP, Principal, Anik Pearson Architect; Founder, Mentorship for Women in Architecture
Pascale Sablan, FAIA, NOMA, LEED AP, Senior Associate, Adjaye Associates; Founder and Executive Director, Beyond the Built Environment
Elsie St. Léger, IIDA, WELL AP, Past President, IIDA NY; Co-Chair, Equity Council
Bolanle Williams-Oley, Chief Financial Officer, Mancini Duffy; Founder, SheBuildsWaves
About the Speakers:
Anik Pearson is founding principal at Anik Pearson Architect, a 100% woman-owned architecture firm founded in New York City in 2001. She has been involved in over 100 new constructions and renovations, locally as well as nationally, from apartments to single-family residences, churches, private clubs, offices, and country estates. Her firm effortlessly merges modern living concepts with a distinctive range of architectural and decorative styles and her work is widely recognized for its meticulously crafted buildings that aspire to sophistication and permanence, as well as her project planning, designed to reduce the project’s ecological footprint and impact on the environment. Pearson’s projects have been featured in national and international publications and have earned her firm the Lucy G. Moses Preservation Award, Interior Design’s Best in Design Award, and Luxe’s Builder of Dreams Award and Gold List Award. In addition to being an architect and business owner, Pearson is proficient at freehand drawing, photography, sculpture, and martial arts. She has been leading efforts to support women in architecture through Mentoring Women in Architecture (MWA), and also mentors architecture students at the Cooper Union through the endowed Sue Ferguson Gussow Scholarship. She is a member of the AIA, certified LEED AP, and is currently an appointed State Board Member and Vice-Chair of the New York State Board for Architecture, Office of the Professions.
With over 15 years of experience, Pascale Sablan has worked on a variety of projects around the world. She is the 315th living African-American woman registered architect in the US. Sablan is an activist architect who works to advance architecture for the betterment of society, bringing visibility and voice to the issues concerning women and BIPOC designers. She is the founder of Beyond the Built Environment, an organization positioned to address the inequitable disparities in architecture. Sablan was awarded the 2021 AIA Whitney M. Young. Jr Award for her advocacy efforts and ascended to the AIA College of Fellows, the youngest African American to reach that honor. In 2023, she will serve as the President-Elect of the National Organization of Minority Architects, the fifth woman to hold this position of leadership. She is the 2022 AIA National Secretary’s Advisory Committee Member. Sablan has been quoted in the New York Times regarding her efforts, and Forbes magazine described her as “the powerhouse woman…actively changing history with a simple mission: women and designers of color must claim and be credited for their contributions to the built environment.” More recently she was featured on Oprah’s Future Rising website for Black trailblazers moving our world forward in the Audacious category.
After a successful career in magazine editorial working for such publications as Rolling Stone and People, Elsie St. Léger chose to pursue a path in interior design and began working in the industry while earning her BFA at New York School of Interior Design. The native New Yorker began her new career in the residential sector before moving to healthcare and is now a project manager in the Interiors department at NYU Langone Health. St. Léger began volunteering with the New York Chapter of IIDA in 2008 and was part of the leadership of LMNOP, a professional development and networking organization that has since become an integral part of IIDA NY. Currently she is Past President of the chapter and co-chair of the IIDA NY Equity Council.
Bolanle Williams-Olley is the CFO and co-owner at Mancini Duffy, a national design firm with over 100 years of history and a tech-forward approach based in New York City, where she oversees the firm’s financial and operational performance. She has over 15 years of experience working in the AEC industry with a strong background in financial analysis and strategic initiatives. She is also the founder of four impact organizations servicing children in low-income communities in Nigeria, women, and small firms. Williams-Olley is married with two kids, is passionate about service, and is obsessed with throwing really fun themed parties.
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AIANY Diversity and Inclusion Committee