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Cathy Houston named Architect of the Year

March 15 2012

Cathy Houston named Architect of the Year
Cathy Houston, a project architect at Collective Architecture, has been named as ‘Architect of the Year’ at the Women in Construction awards.

Houston received the accolade on the back of a high rise lighting scheme in Castlemilk as well as a residential scheme in Blochairn and at Mansfield Place on the Isle of Bute.

In his testimonial Laurence O'boyle of O'boyle Housing Services said: “Cathy has enviable organisational skills which allows for seamless project management and project delivery.  However, most importantly Cathy has a manner which allows her to communicate with and gain respect from everyone connected with a project, starting from her clients, residents, other design team members, construction professionals and tradesmen.”

Michael Carberry at Blochairn housing association said: “Cathy led the Design Team and chaired Site Meetings. It was a major achievement to make sure that everyone involved had the same goal  -  to create a quality product that everyone could be proud of. Despite all the pressures of such a large, difficult development and the pressures of the current financial climate, Cathy kept everyone focused on the task at hand. She was extremely methodical in examining each problematic issue that arose and she was determined to find a solution.”

Houston won out against Alexandra Jones of Mace, Marianne Mueller of Casper Mueller Kneer as well as Vicky Saunders and Christine Davis of Bernard Taylor Partnership Ltd.


Mr Archie Tect
#1 Posted by Mr Archie Tect on 15 Mar 2012 at 14:38 PM
Who won Male architect of the Year - or would that be sexist?
#2 Posted by Mike on 15 Mar 2012 at 18:25 PM
@Mr Archie Tect, wanted to ask the same thing..
#3 Posted by emma on 15 Mar 2012 at 19:32 PM
Posts 1 & 2, no it wouldn't be sexist. Announcing an award called 'architect of the year' and not allowing men/women to enter would be sexist. It's fairly obvious.

The purpose of the award is to celebrate female achievements in a male dominated profession, and to inspire other women to enter the profession and achieve great things. The recent AJ women in architecture survey, and your comments, shows just how much we need awards like these right now.

Well Done Cathy!
D to the R
#4 Posted by D to the R on 15 Mar 2012 at 19:38 PM
Here here Emma .... and the winner of the Male Nursery Nurse is ...... what a pile of tosh !
#5 Posted by jt on 15 Mar 2012 at 19:39 PM
Well put emma and well done Cathy.
#6 Posted by jt on 15 Mar 2012 at 19:40 PM
easy for cowards to mock
#7 Posted by Chris on 16 Mar 2012 at 09:24 AM
Yes: well put Emma, and well done Cathy.
#8 Posted by John on 16 Mar 2012 at 09:49 AM
Congratulations Cathy!!
The Sun
#9 Posted by The Sun on 16 Mar 2012 at 10:24 AM
This comment has been removed because it contravenes UR's terms & conditions of comment.
#10 Posted by Markss on 16 Mar 2012 at 10:30 AM
Why are there fewer “successful” women architects than male?

Dinosaurs like D to the R or Mr Archie Tect would argue maybe, ‘lack of ability’, ‘lack of talent’, ‘choices’ or ‘coincidence’ and other such sexist or silly things. The truth is, is that for a mix of many different reasons, women are at an unfair advantage in the world of architecture. This is not just unfair to women, but it harms Architecture as a discipline.

Having a women architect of the year award is one tiny attempt at leveling out the playing field a wee bit to make it fairer for women and to strengthen Architectural practice. Why bother attacking it?

Well done Cathy!
Mr Archie Tect
#11 Posted by Mr Archie Tect on 16 Mar 2012 at 10:53 AM
Oh dear. Having such an award perpetuates the belief that a female architect is different to a male architect and therefore is a position which is somehow to be put on a pedestal. Collective Architecture do some decent work, and Cathy sounds like she is a competent Project Architect, this is not a critism of her, but as long as a sub-group in any sphere of life singles itself out, it dilutes its place in the greater whole.
We have an open Architect of the Year award - we don't need female/young/ethnic monority/left handed/bald/disabled etc. despite my eligibility for half of these.
Clearly, Cathy and the other entrants believe we do. Their opinion is equally valid.
Mr Archie Tect
#12 Posted by Mr Archie Tect on 16 Mar 2012 at 11:54 AM
For clarification, my post #11 was sent before I saw #10, and my comments are not in reponse to this and do not suggest that women are less able or talented than men in any profession.
I have employed many talented architectural staff regardless of gender, ethnicity and beliefs. All that mattered is their ability and how you think they will fit in the organisation.
That is my non-prehistoric point.
Dinosaur Jr
#13 Posted by Dinosaur Jr on 16 Mar 2012 at 12:50 PM
Is there also an award for child savant architect of the year that my kids can apply for?

#14 Posted by urbanrealm on 16 Mar 2012 at 13:02 PM
To clarify, the title of the award is ‘architect of the year’ not ‘woman architect of the year’ – although the award is only open to women.
Mr Archie Tect
#15 Posted by Mr Archie Tect on 16 Mar 2012 at 13:20 PM
lol - backatcha #3. Obvious isn't it.
#16 Posted by architectwhohappenstobefemale on 16 Mar 2012 at 13:38 PM
As a female architect I find it extremely offensive that someone has felt the need to organise a special award just for women - as though of course we couldn't possibly compete on a level playing field with male architects. Totally sexist.

I'd feel a whole lot better about the entire thing if someone was to pat me on the head and tell me to run along and play with the other good little girls.
D to the R
#17 Posted by D to the R on 17 Mar 2012 at 13:27 PM
@16 ... I am male and therefore it is only my opinion as to whether or not this would offend women. Taking nothing away ... Well done Cathy ! ... really.
D to the R
#18 Posted by D to the R on 17 Mar 2012 at 13:30 PM
@16 ... You correctly sum the whole point up ... you are an architect first and foremost .... whether male / female / black / white .. your gender is secondary (and irrelevant)
Walt Disney
#19 Posted by Walt Disney on 19 Mar 2012 at 15:04 PM
Inevitably, this smells of tokenism. I would have though that a PC practice like collective would have eschewed such an award?

What do we have next? Black architect of the year? Handicapped architect of the year? Foreign lamguage architect of the year?
Chris Stewart
#20 Posted by Chris Stewart on 20 Mar 2012 at 07:31 AM
At Collective Architecture we are aware of the points being made about an architects award for women. We do however take the view these are far outweighed by the upward battle some have in our male dominated profession. Recent surveys have shown that in the recession the number of women architects is reducing more quickly than male, surely these statistics are more important than some of the points being made.
Cathy has proved through a series of award winning projects she can hold her own in any field and we are all tremendously proud of her. If this award raises these issues and at the same time can celebrate some brilliant architects this has to be something positive.
Well done Cathy.

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