Michaele Pride, architect focused on urban design and neighborhood change


Michaele Pride
Date: 
Thu, 1956-10-18

Michaele Pride was born on this date in 1956. She is an African American architect and educator.

She was born in Granada Hills, CA, the daughter of Wallace and Leatrice Pride. The oldest of three children, she has two younger brothers, Dodd and Regan. As a young girl, Pride considered becoming a judge or a scientist but found a way of connecting her strong aptitudes with mathematics, problem solving, and art using her humanitarian spirit in her current profession as an architect. Her father was both an artist and architect, and her mother was an entrepreneur, administrator, and community activist.

She graduated from John F. Kennedy High School in Granada Hills in 1974, and received her Bachelor of Architecture degree from Arizona State University in 1981. Pride started the first woman-owned and operated architecture firm in California. At about the same time, Pride married and had a son, Bryant. She was commissioned along with others to redesign the community areas of Los Angeles ruined by the Rodney King Riots in 1992.

After seven years as principal of her firm in Los Angeles, Pride-Wells moved to Kentucky in 1996, as director of the University of Kentucky’s community design center in downtown Lexington, she became the first African-American woman to head an architecture program in a majority institution. As inaugural director of the Downtown Design Center at UK, she developed operational policies and created the Lexington Research Round table. She directed many projects addressing critical housing and urban design issues throughout Kentucky.

In 2001, while at the Center, she achieved her Master of Architecture in Urban Design from Harvard University Graduate School of Design. Pride joined the University of Cincinnati faculty in September 2003, as Associate Professor and Director of the School of Architecture and Interior Design. Her research focuses on the social and political implications of urban design and the dynamics of neighborhood change. Translating theory to practice, she also advises neighborhoods and local governments across the United States.

Professor Pride has taught at UCLA, Woodbury University, and the University of Southern California. She has received awards for design, planning, and community advocacy from the LA Cultural Affairs Commission, the National Organization of Minority Architects, American Planning Association, and the American Institute of Architects.

A loving mother and sensitive parent, Pride recently had more than 20 local middle school students participate in an architectural summer CAMP (Cincinnati Architecture Mentoring Program) offered at the University of Cincinnati's nationally ranked College of Design, Architecture, Art, and Planning. Pride stated that the goal of the event (and of future efforts from CAMP) is to foster greater awareness among younger students, minority students in particular, regarding the possibilities for and requirements of a design career.

Pride is currently the Dean of the School of Architecture at the University of New Mexico.

Reference: Michaele Pride

To Become an Architect

Person / name: 

Pride, Michaele

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