New Direction

Heather Woofter named Sam Fox’s new director of architecture and urban design

Architecture Midwest Urbanism
Heather Woofter is taking over as director of the College of Architecture and Graduate School of Architecture & Urban Design at the Sam Fox School of Design & Visual Arts. (Photo: Joe Angeles/Washington University)
Heather Woofter is taking over as director of the College of Architecture and Graduate School of Architecture & Urban Design at the Sam Fox School of Design & Visual Arts. (Photo: Joe Angeles/Washington University)

Heather Woofter has been named the new director of the College of Architecture and Graduate School of Architecture & Urban Design at the Sam Fox School of Design & Visual Arts at Washington University in St. Louis. Woofter will succeed Bruce Lindsey, who has led the school for the past ten years and is currently the president of the Association of Collegiate Schools of Architecture (ACSA).

“Heather is an internationally distinguished architect and design educator whose career embodies the close ties between academic research and studio practice,” said Carmon Colangelo, the Ralph J. Nagel Dean of the Sam Fox School, in a press release. “I am proud to announce her appointment and look forward to working closely with her as we embark on a new era in the life of the school.”

Woofter began teaching at the Sam Fox School in 2005 and has chaired the graduate architecture program since 2010. Her appointment as director will begin on July 1st. With degrees from Virginia Tech and the Harvard GSD, Woofter has also taught at Virginia Tech, Aristotle University of Thessaloniki in Greece, and Konkuk University in Seoul. Woofter also acted as principal faculty advisor to the Women in Architecture and Design student group, which organized “Women in Architecture 1974 | 2014” at Sam Fox, and was responsible for the award-winning “Metabolic City” exhibition at the university’s Mildred Lane Kemper Art Museum. In private practice, Woofter is the co-director of the St. Louis-based firm Axi:Ome.

Commenting in a press release on the occasion of her appointment, Woofter addressed the gender disparity in the field and her vision for the future of the school. “There is still a gap between architectural education and architectural practice. Male and female students graduate at about the same rates, but even today, fewer women are getting their licenses. As a profession, we definitely have work to do. But it’s not really about men vs. women—it’s about lifestyle and choices and transforming the discipline. The success of our programs, and ultimately of architecture itself, will depend on our ability to create a supportive culture that fosters research, collaboration, and critical thinking.”

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