Alyson Steele and Saundra Little Featured in AIA Future Focused Series

Lorynn Holloway
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Alyson Steele, FAIA, LEED AP, Quinn Evans’ president and chief design officer, was featured in the American Institute of Architects’ Future Focused video series.

Alyson Steele, FAIA, LEED AP, Quinn Evans’ president and chief executive officer, and Saundra Little, FAIA, LEED AP, NOMA, a principal and director of diversity and inclusion at Quinn Evans are featured in the American Institute of Architects’ Future Focused video series. This series celebrates women’s contributions to the architectural profession and impact on their communities.

By really embracing the hard challenges, that’s how you know you’re making a difference.
- Alyson Steele, FAIA, LEED AP

Steele speaks on the inclusive thinking that informed Quinn Evans’ design for Heritage Hall, a new underground visitor center at the Michigan State Capitol. The new space transcends Americans with Disabilities Act requirements to create a fully accessible experience for all visitors, and a shared experience for groups including people with different abilities.

We really wanted to embrace the challenge of bringing everyone together, and bringing everyone together in a way that we can have shared experiences.
- Alyson Steele, FAIA, LEED AP

Little's video emphasizes her commitment to elevating the careers of Black women and people of color in the profession and being an example of available opportunities. Her portfolio reflects the diversity of the neighborhoods she champions, especially in her hometown of Detroit, MI, with successful cultural, institutional, educational, and commercial projects of all sizes. The 20th Century African American Civil Rights Sites project is a career highlight for Saundra where we collaborated with community members and civil rights historians to documents key sites in the struggle for Black civil rights in Detroit.

[To] have buildings saved in neighborhoods that were thought [of] as desolate, and now they're actually the center hubs of activity and key neighborhoods within the city. It is something I enjoy every day.
- Saundra Little, FAIA, LEED AP, NOMA

Quinn Evans is a national leader in the design of museums and visitor centers, with a deep portfolio of visitor-focused projects for major cultural institutions including the Smithsonian Institution, the National Park Service, and The Henry Ford.

Quinn Evans is also one of the largest women-owned design practices in the nation. Under Steele’s leadership, along with her predecessor Larry Barr, FAIA, Quinn Evans has significantly increased the representation of women and minorities on its staff and in company ownership. Currently, women hold a 51.5% majority of company stock, and more than half of the senior management positions (principal, senior associate, and associate). Notably, the firm’s president/CEO, chief financial officer, chief marketing officer, director of sustainability, director of diversity and inclusion, and three regional directors are women.

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