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Celebrating Women in Design

An illustration shows how to celebrate women in design

At Ayers Saint Gross, we believe Representation Matters. That’s why we honor the women in our firm who show up every day, bringing their whole selves – their knowledge, their expertise, and their unique perspectives.

In honor of Women’s History Month, we asked members of our firm to share their perspectives on where they feel most engaged at work and home, and how the design industry can uplift women.

How do you bring your whole self to your career? What makes you feel most engaged and passionate in your workplace and community? 

“Always be present and always go the distance. Any task is an opportunity to show the prowess in your field and should be treated as such.”

“(I feel most engaged) when efforts align with my personal values, are intellectually challenging, and respect personal boundaries.”

“I show up by recognizing the strengths of others and encouraging them to use those strengths and find their passions.”

“I show up in my career by taking initiative when unexpected work comes up. I look out for my colleagues when they need help and make sure to support them when I’m able.”

“I show up as a Dreamer. I dream big and I make that dream a goal and I work really hard to achieve it. I believe in a future where no one will be judged by their gender, sexuality, race, or nationality. I feel most engaged and pasionate when I can take steps toward addressing social inequity and disparities in our profession and our community.”

“I’m motivated by being an advocate for others, especially giving space and voices to underrepresented, marginalized, and emerging professionals and community members.”

“A big part of showing up for me is considering my impact on my team and those around me. My attitude toward projects and people seems to have a greater pull than the work itself.”

What makes you feel most engaged and passionate outside of work? 

“Being with friends is hugely enjoyable.”

“Being active, being around people I love, giving back, sharing knowledge, and learning new things.”

“Getting out into nature.”

“Scripted reality television and bourbon.”

“My family for sure, especially my son who has made me even more passionate and committed to making a more equitable world. I am also engaged in NOMA Arizona which constantly takes action into addressing inequity in our profession and community.”

“Connecting through arts, music, and culture motivates me and helps sustain all of the positive relationships in my life, many of which are decades long. Being passionate about arts and culture also allows me to connect, support, and advocate for my communities.”

“I am most engaged outside of work when I am surrounded by people that I love. My favorite activity is doing things that other people enjoy. Seeing other people happy makes me happy.”

What are some ways we can uplift women in the design industry — either on an individual or systemic level?

“Women should always be in the room, as should people of different races. Being a straight white male, I realize the world is entirely designed for me. There are so many viewpoints I can only begin to grasp at, and instead of makign assumptions, other voices should be heard.”

“Amplify female voices, foster inclusive teams and environments, and celebrate small and big wins.”

“It is so important to form and maintain connections with other women in the AEC industry; communities are powerful! I believe this so much that I started a podcast, Architectette, to encourage women+ to be licensed in the AEC+D fields, promoted to leadership positions, connected in a strong community, and champion equality and change.”

“Create space for all women — including nonmothers.”

“Normalize listening to women without interruption in the workplace. Value women’s voices, ideas, concerns, questions, and direction, etc.”

“I love this quote from an unknown source that says, ‘Empowered women empower women.’ Reach out, speak up, embrace and support others. Everyone has their own unique superpower, but the most powerful ones help and support others to find or reach their superpowers.”

“Equal pay and pay transparency are crucial across all industries and professions. Also, I attribute so much of my professional development to my many mentors. Supporting mentorship programs is vital to uplifting women in our industry.”

“A lot of the issues I have personally experienced come from the communication methods and tones that are used. Considering how to communicate with women versus men and taking active steps to align those conversations can help me and others feel valued.”

Do you have thoughts you’d like to share? If so, let us know! Send your thoughts to

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