Wendy MacNaughton nominated designer, social innovator and urbanist Liz Ogbu:

"I met Liz Ogbu over ten years ago when she was working at the firm Public Architecture.  She had just completed a behemoth project in the Castro neighborhood of San Francisco where she transformed a busy intersection into an urban park that sits smack in the middle of that street (impressive feature in our often nay-saying town.) She was just starting on a project designing stations for day-laborers that went on to win every award under the sun. I know nothing of architecture, but my background is in art and social work, so i was hugely impressed by Liz’s work - to her, architecture is not about making buildings, it’s about addressing human needs.

to her, architecture is not about making buildings, it’s about addressing human needs.

Liz now runs her own firm, Studio O, and is involved in projects all over the world - from delivering sanitation to low-income communities in Ghana to redesigning affordable housing in Charlottesville, North Carolina - all while teaching at Stanford and CCA. She brings such a huge heart and brain to her work - using her expertise while recognizing the expertise of the people she works with, using the public’s knowledge and experience as the foundation for the work. A lot of lip service is paid to this kind of approach these days, but she’s been the real thing for years. I still don’t know anything about architecture, but i know Liz is doing great work. i’m a huge fan."

Liz Ogbu and her work

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