Bethune Lecture

The Bethune Lecture is an annual lecture made possible by the joint sponsorship of the Buffalo/Western New York chapter of the American Institute of Architects  and the UB School of Architecture and Planning.

Louise Blanchard Bethune.

Louise Blanchard Bethune, FAIA

The Bethune Lecture was established in 2008 to expose the School of Architecture and Planning and its community to the work of women in architecture and the changing face of the profession. Sponsored by AIA Buffalo/WNY, the series has featured leading woman architects including Alison Brooks, Sarah Whiting, Meejin Yoon, Billie Tsien, Jeanne Gang, Maryann Thompson, Graft on Architects and Sheila Kennedy.

The annual Bethune Lecture celebrates the life and professional work of Buffalo-based architect Louise Bethune. Bethune (1856–1913), the first professional woman architect in the United States and the first woman elected to the American Institute of Architects.

2022-23 Bethune Lecturer: Alison Brooks

  • Alison Brooks

    May 4, 2023 | Bethune Lecture "Context is Everything."                                       

    Brooks will cover her practice's recent work, with a focus on four ideals: civicness, authenticity, generosity, and beauty.

Previous Bethune Lecturers

  • Débora Mesa

    March 2, 2022

    Débora Mesa Molina, principal of Ensamble Studio, discusses her firm's balance of imagination and reality, art and science, toward innovative typologies, technologies and methodologies that advance architecture with an interdisciplinary approach. Through their startup WoHo, they are developing ways to increase quality and affordability in architecture through the integration of offsite technologies.

  • Jennifer Newsom

    Oct. 21, 2020

    Architect and educator Jennifer Newsom presents this year's Bethune Lecture as she considers racial constructs in the built environment as openings for critical public engagement in design. Newsom is assistant professor of architecture with the University of Minnesota and co-founder of Dream The Combine, which creates art and architecture as sites of interaction. 

  • Sarah Whiting

    Oct. 16, 2019

    Delivering this year's Bethune Lecture is Harvard GSD Dean Sarah Whiting. In "Time is money," she considers the time side of this mantra of capitalism, focusing on how contemporary theorizations of time affect architectural education and practice. 

  • Meejin Yoon

    Nov 7, 2018

    Architect, designer, and educator Meejin Yoon presents "Signal To Noise," which questions how architecture can communicate, create space, and focus attention in the age of accelerated signals.

  • Clara Solà-Morales

    April 4, 2018

    Clara Solà-Morales is associate professor at the Barcelona School of Architecture, ETSAB, UPC, and founder of Cadaval & Solà-Morales, a studio that operates as a laboratory for design driven by research and development.

  • Deborah Berke

    March 30, 2016

    Deborah Berke is the founder of the New York-based architecture and design firm Deborah Berke Partners. In July 2016 Deborah will become the Dean of the School of Architecture at Yale University.