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 2098 licensed African American architects in our database.
  • 385
  • 1713

The last 10 architects added to the database:

Jan 9, 2017 Krista Alis Whiters WA
Jan 2, 2017 Kojo Asiedu CT
Dec 31, 2016 Mercedes Ashley Ward (Landsc. Arch) NY
Dec 24, 2016 Kisha Lynn Patterson NY
Dec 23, 2016 Johnathan Styles GA
Dec 12, 2016 Verna James
Dec 10, 2016 Michael C. Johnson MD
Dec 2, 2016 Vershae Monique Hite NC
Dec 1, 2016 Sharon Ferguson Pope GA
Dec 1, 2016 Carma Alicia Clark VA

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


Jan 7, 2017 The count for newly licensed architects in 2017 has begun. The goal is 70. Let's do it!
Dec 1, 2016 47% of the 51 licensed in 2016 are Women
Oct 18, 2016 40% of those added in 2015 are WOMEN! 41 new registrations added so far in 2016. 44% are 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:
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 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 directory’s immediate usefulness, J. Max Bond Jr., FAIA, writes in support of the nomination: “The Directory’s 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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