Campus & Community

Loeb Fellowship program announces class of 2007

7 min read

The Loeb Fellowship at the Harvard Graduate School of Design (GSD) recently announced that 10 midcareer professionals have been awarded fellowships to participate in one year of independent study in fields related to the built and natural environment. Loeb Fellows are often architects, landscape architects, urban planners, and urban designers. Professionals in related fields such as filmmaking, journalism, nonprofit administration, the arts, and government service have also been selected for the program. For more information about the fellowship and upcoming presentations by this class of fellows, visit

The following midcareer practitioners dedicated to the improvement of the built and natural environment will be in residence as Loeb Fellows at GSD for the 2006-07 academic year.

Denise Arnold is an architect who has worked for the city of Chicago in a number of roles, each related to improving the quality of the built environment in the city. She organized and administered the highly regarded competitions sponsored by the National Endowment for the Arts for the rebuilding of Chicago’s most troubled public housing sites. Most recently, she served as the director of the city’s efforts to increase the accessibility of both public and private spaces in Chicago. As a Loeb Fellow, Arnold plans to further her knowledge of competitions as a strategy for producing great public buildings. She is also interested in the creation of new forms of codes to include green building, accessibility, and high-quality design as integral parts of the design process, starting from conception.

Catherine Sloss Crenshaw is president and CEO of Sloss Real Estate, a development company located in Birmingham, Ala. She is involved in both the revitalization of the city center and the renewal and appropriate growth of her community. Her company has made a commitment to redevelop historic buildings, construct new buildings that honor their surroundings, and provide planning services to others throughout the region. As a Loeb Fellow, Crenshaw plans to improve her knowledge of good design principles and green building; study innovative models for mixed-income/mixed-use neighborhoods; and investigate ways of contributing to green neighborhoods and cities through the preservation and creation of urban trees and urban forests.

Ulises de Jesus Diaz is a community/urban activist, artist, and architect working to strengthen the voice of an expanding and diverse community in Los Angeles, with an emphasis on the Mexican and Chicano/a presence on the cultural and environmental landscape of Southern California. He is a design principal in ADOBE LA (Artists, Architects and Designers Opening the Border Edge of Los Angeles), a collective of artists and architects who work in the realms of architecture and public art to help maintain and give voice to the diverse cultural traditions that make Los Angeles unique. As a Loeb Fellow, Diaz plans to study culturally based environmental practices, and to broaden his knowledge of participatory processes used in other places.

Deborah Frieden recently completed the task of getting a major cultural institution in San Francisco planned, designed, permitted, and constructed. As the project director of The Corporation of the Fine Arts Museums, she managed all planning aspects including strategic and master planning for the new de Young Museum. Despite controversy at many turns, the de Young Museum is rapidly becoming a landmark in the community and a standard of design excellence for other major projects locally and nationally. As a Loeb fellow, Frieden intends to study planning, architecture, urban design, and public/private development.

Brian Kuehl is a founding partner of The Clark Group, a national consulting firm that seeks innovative solutions for governments, businesses, and nonprofit clients wishing to achieve their goals while also benefiting the environment. Through The Clark Group, Kuehl facilitated an agreement between tribes and farmers in Washington state to develop a biogas facility to convert dairy waste into energy, thereby improving the economics of the dairies and protecting local salmon fisheries. He also brought a wide coalition of interests together to change the federal tax code to encourage redevelopment of contaminated “brownfield” properties. Based in Sheridan, Wyo., Kuehl plans to study energy-efficient transportation and building technologies, brownfield redevelopment, and corporate sustainability while at Harvard.

Steven Lewis works for the Office of the Chief Architect in the Public Building Service of the General Services Administration (GSA) in Washington, D.C. He is committed to bringing more people of color into the design professions, and opening doors for architects of color to work on major public buildings across the nation. He serves as the GSA liaison to the National Organization of Minority Architects, and is a part of the leadership of that organization. As a Loeb Fellow, Lewis plans to study the history of minority individuals and firms in the architecture profession, and will work to design new strategies for increasing their number.

Tracy Metz is a journalist who covers the arts for the national newspaper NRC Handelsblad in the Netherlands. Over her 25-year career, she has written about architecture, urbanism, landscape, and mobility, both in Holland and abroad. She is an international correspondent for Architectural Record and a contributor to Metropolis, Graphis, Domus, and Surface. Metz has authored five books on a similarly wide range of topics and was recently appointed to the National Council on Rural Affairs, the official advisory body for the Ministry of Nature and Agriculture, and has taken up a position as visiting scholar at the Netherlands Institute for Spatial Research. As a Loeb Fellow, Metz plans to study the economics of urban development and the future of downtowns.

Betsy Otto is a clean water advocate and believes that plentiful, clean water is a major issue for the 21st century. She is concerned with how water supply and treatment will shape our natural and urban areas in the future. As senior director of river advocacy for American Rivers, an organization based in Washington, D.C., she is involved with planning and providing technical assistance to those public bodies that have responsibility for planning water collection, urban runoff, and sewage treatment systems. As a Loeb Fellow, Otto plans to study innovative approaches to water management as well as urban and regional planning principles.

Damon Rich is the founder and creative director of the Center for Urban Pedagogy (CUP), a nonprofit organization in New York City that offers creative education about places and how they change. He uses design and the design process as a framework for building innovative curriculum for public schools in New York City and other locations. A study of the waste management system of New York, for example, provided an opportunity to teach history, biology, math, and urban planning. Rich also works with community-based organizations to design educational tools for their constituents. CUP co-produces a series of videos for residents of New York City’s public housing with a group of tenant advocates. Trained as an architect, his interest focuses on how design educates residents about the places they work and live, and how residents participate in making decisions about how these places change. As a Loeb Fellow, Rich plans to study design theory, development, and participatory design processes.

Andreas Wolf is an architect and planner, public official, and teacher in Leipzig, Germany. Born and trained in the western part of the nation, he moved his practice to the east after Germany was reunited because he felt there was more significant work to do in rebuilding that part of the nation. Wolf is concerned not only with improving the quality of design in residential and commercial sectors of the urban centers of Germany, but also with the process of participation in design decisions. He believes that engaging everyday citizens in the design process is an excellent way to build civic engagement for a wider range of issues as well as to gain commitment of people to their communities. Wolf’s design work has focused on brownfield revitalization, university campuses, and housing, and he has served as urban design adviser for several cities in the eastern part of Germany. As a Loeb Fellow, Wolf plans to study urban planning and the American approach to community involvement in design decisions.