Early life and education
Beverly Greene was the first documented African American woman architect to be licensed in the United States. She was born on October 4th, 1915. She was the only child of a doctor father and a stay at home mother.
She studied Architectural engineering at University of Illinois – Urbana Champaign and received her bachelor’s in 1936. She went on to receive a masters degree in city planning in 1937.
In 1945, Beverly received another masters degree, this time in Architecture from Columbia University.
Career in Architecture
Beverly was hired by Roderick O’Neil, the first black architect to have an office in downtown Chicago. She also worked for the Chicago Housing Authority. She became a licensed architect in the state of Illinois on December 28th, 1942.
Beverly moved to New York City to begin work for Metropolitan Life Insurance Company. The company was in the early development stages of the Stuyvesant housing complex in lower Manhattan. Beverly became the first architect hired.
Afterwards earning a masters degree from Columbia University, she began working for the Isadore Rosenfield firm, specializing in healthcare and hospital design. She was one of only two black employees. The other was Conrad A Johnson who later went on to establish his own firm.
She went on to work for Marcel Breuer and is credited for his NYU building and the UNESCO building in Paris.
Major Buildings and Projects
- Peter Cooper Village Stuyvesant Town (orig. Stuyvesant Town), New York, NY (1949)
- Colston Hall, (orig. Silver Hall), Bronx Community College, Bronx, NY (1961), with Marcel Breuer & Associates
- Begrisch Hall. Bronx Community College, Bronx, NY (1964), with Marcel Breuer & Associates
- Polowczek Hall (orig. Gould Hall of Technology), Bronx Community College, Bronx, NY (1964), with Marcel Breuer & Associates
- Meister Hall, (orig. Tech I & II), Bronx Community College, Bronx, NY (1969), with Marcel Breuer & Associates
- UNESCO building, Paris, France, with Marcel Breuer & Associates
In 1950 she participated in an exhibit of black architects organized by CANA (Council of Advancement of Negro Architects) and co-sponsored by the AIA NYC and the Architect’s League.