Pioneering architectural journalist Mildred Schmertz passes away

Pioneering architectural journalist Mildred Schmertz passes away. Mildred Schmertz (Courtesy Architects & Artisans)

The Architect’s Newspaper wants to note the passing of architectural journalist Mildred Schmertz, who was a contributor to the paper. Suzanne Stephens, deputy editor of Architectural Record, has written a respectful obituary of Schmertz, who spent the entirety of her professional career at Architectural Record. She was 92.

Schmertz was Record’s first female editor-in-chief, and as Stephens points out, the first woman to lead “any American professional architectural magazine.”

She came late to our publication, where she wrote several reviews (“Critical Condition,” “The Architecture Monograph Reinvented,” “Museums Expand Their Habitats“) and articles on New York architecture (“The Worthy Client“). Though she had been retired from Record for many years, she clearly was still engaged with architecture and continued to work as a journalist, making her way to our downtown office to pitch stories and book reviews. We were thrilled to have her on our masthead. Every time we met, even as recently as a month ago, she was full of gossip and ideas for stories.

Mildred defined what it meant to be a professional architecture journalist, and our field owes her a debt of gratitude for her passion and intelligence.

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