The Directory of African American Architects

Mr. Howard Sims

posted Apr 3, 2016 by mannda

Howard Sims, known for both his iconic Detroit buildings and his trailblazing efforts to diversify the fields of architecture, planning and design, has died at age 82, according to a family spokesman.

Mr. Sims passed away early Thursday in Detroit due to complications from a heart attack, said David Rudolph.

In 1964, Mr. Sims founded his Detroit firm, Sims and Associates, which today is known as SDG Associates, downtown. It is Michigan’s oldest black-owned architecture firm, Rudolph said.

Mr. Sims played a key role in designing the Charles H. Wright Museum of African American History, the renovated Cobo Center, the Millender Center apartments, the Detroit Wayne County Port Authority Public Dock & Terminal and the Wayne County Community College main campus.

Elsewhere in Michigan, some of his notable projects include the School of Social Work at the University of Michigan and facilities at the Detroit Metropolitan Airport.

He and his wife, Judith, established several scholarships, intended for students of color pursuing architecture and planning careers, at the University of Michigan and Lawrence Technological University.

One of the scholarships set up at Lawrence Tech honors a former student from

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The Directory of African American Architects is maintained as a public service to promote an awareness of who African American architects are and where they are located. The sole qualification for listing is licensure in one of the fifty US jurisdictions and their territories.

If you are not presently listed please complete the PLEASE ADD ME form and submit.

The Directory is sponsored by the Center for the Study of Practice at the University of Cincinnati.

If you are listed and would like to see a link to your firm's web site please contact Dennis Alan Mann at

Privacy Policy

No information in our database is made public except what appears on the web site.

Name, City, State, Home State of License

If the person is a firm owner or partner and if the firm has a web site then a live link is provided to that web site. All other information is stored in our database and used only for research purposes with no names connected to information (see Publications for examples of our research).

Database Summary

There are currently 2071 licensed African American architects in our database.
  • 372
  • 1699

The last 10 architects added to the database:

Aug 24, 2016 Dietrich Thomas Logan GA
Aug 22, 2016 Fidel A. Davis GA
Aug 16, 2016 Jasmine V. Griggs NC
Aug 12, 2016 Sophia B. Tarkhan GA
Aug 10, 2016 Kristina Rebecca Crenshaw MD
Aug 6, 2016 Ella Hazard CA
Aug 4, 2016 Clarissa Rachel Francois NY
Aug 1, 2016 Sheldon Emil Clark VA
Jul 31, 2016 James Albert Crittenden, III GA
Jul 29, 2016 Olusanmi A. Fawehinmi TX

The last 5 faculty added to the database:

Feb 26, 2016 Roderick Fluker AL
Feb 10, 2016 Mira Henry CA
Nov 9, 2015 William J. Batson, Jr. TX
Nov 1, 2015 Felicia Davis PA
Sep 9, 2015 Tonya Sanders, PhD MD


Aug 10, 2016 38% of newly licensed architects in 2015 were women!
Jul 31, 2016 65 newly licensed in 2015; 29 newly licensed so far in 2016
Apr 29, 2016 Regina L. Winters Toussaint, 47, transitioned with peace and grace on April 3, 2016. She was born on February 24, 1969 in Brooklyn, New York, daughter of Rosa Winters. Regina excelled academically and was a graduate of the George School an elite Quaker prep school in Pennsylvania, Harvard University and Yale University. Regina was an architect who owned and operated Zared Enterprises, LLC. Her professionalism and creativity has made an indelible imprint on her projects especially the - Kenneth Eldridgedesign of the Q House of which she lived to see that vision fully funded. Her legacy will continue to inspire many. Regina's memory will be treasured by her husband Rev. Donald R. A. Toussaint, Sr., her mother; Rosa Winters, one sister; Renee Rowley, her niece; Jessica Rowley, adored great nephew; Joshua Rowley, one step son; Donald Abram, Jr., two step daughters; Johari Rae Toussaint and Dashae Tuggle, her godfather; Big Daddy, Eight devoted girlfriends and a host of other relatives and friends. Visitation will be held on Friday, April 8, 2016 from 10:00 AM – 11:00 AM followed by a service of celebration at 11:00 AM at Union Baptist Church, 805 Newfield Ave. Stamford, CT. with Rev. Dr. Robert W. Perry officiating Interment will take place in Columbia, Ms. Services entrusted to Downer Funeral Home. - See more at:
Apr 13, 2016 To date there have been 63! additions of NEWLY LICENSED architects in 2015! And 23 or 37% were WOMEN! A new record by far.
Feb 12, 2016 Our congratulations to William J. Bates, Pittsburgh; Barbara Bouza, Los Angeles; Dan Kirby, Orlando; R. Steven Lewis, Los Angeles; and Frederick Perpall, Dallas for their elevation to FAIA.
Jan 31, 2016 UPDATE: 56 new licensees in 2015!
Jan 8, 2016 BREAKING NEWS: 2015 was a banner year for adding newly licensed architects to the Directory. 54 were licensed in 2015 and an additional 21 who were licensed prior to 2015. That's a total of 75! The most since the early 1990s.
Nov 9, 2015 We are sorry to report the passing of Claude Melven Rose, Jr. Mr. Claude Melven Rose, Jr., the son of the late Claude Melven Rose and Gladys Boggs Rose, departed this life on September 12, 2015. Melven was born in Philadelphia, PA. Melven graduated from Trenton Central High School. He was educated in the School of Architecture at Cornell University. Over the past thirty years, he owned his own firm, and was also associated with other Architectural companies. He served as the Principal Architect/Designer of over 3000 commercial and residential buildings in Pennsylvania, New Jersey, and the countries of Nigeria and Israel. He served as a former President of the Minority Architects/Engineers Alliance and remained an active board member of the organization for many years. Melven married Pennie Adams Rose on November 30, 1984. He was a devoted Husband and Father. Melven was a loyal Philadelphia Eagle’s fan. Among other interests, he especially enjoyed listening to classical music. He is survived by his loving wife, Pennie Adams Rose, a daughter Sharon Elizabeth Rose Holmes (William) of Delaware, a sister Comfort M. Sparks of Trenton, NJ, two special nieces Diana P. Overall (John) of Sewell, NJ and Laronna Bell (Zebedee) of Bowie, MD, a special nephew Marvin C. Porter of Trenton, NJ, a god-daughter Betty Faulk (Donald) of Deptford, NJ. Melven is survived by several nieces, nephews, cousins and a host of friends.
Jan 21, 2007 We are proud to announce that THE DIRECTORY OF AFRICAN AMERICAN ARCHITECTS has received a 2007 AIA Award for Collaborative Achievement. The Directory of African American Architects, established in 1991 by two faculty, Professor Bradford Grant, chair of Architecture at Hampton University, and Dennis Mann, Professor of Architecture at the University of Cincinnati, have garnered an Institute Honor for Collaborative Achievement for its success in advancing the visibility, representation, and contributions of African-American architects, in the words of its founding collaborators. The directory lists more than 1,500 African-American architects who practice in the private and public sectors, teach in higher education, or work outside the profession and still maintain licensure. The listing, with its series of highlight studies, continues to expand and now includes a Web site [] and a comparable listing of landscape architects. Noting the directorys immediate usefulness, J. Max Bond Jr., FAIA, writes in support of the nomination: The Directorys existence helped give a presence to African-American architects. It helped people contact each other and thus helped to reinforce the creation of a community of Architects.
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