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Katherine Darnstadt
Founder, Latent Design

Latent Design is a progressive architecture and urbanism firm leveraging civic innovation and social impact to design more equitable spaces and systems. Since founding her practice in 2010, Darnstadt and her firm have prototyped new urban design systems to advance urban agriculture, supported small business, created spaces for youth makers, advanced building innovation, and created public space frameworks.

The firm’s work has been published, exhibited, and featured widely, most notably at the International Venice Architecture Biennial, on Chicago Ideas Week and NPR, and by the Architizer A+ Awards. Darnstadt is a winner of the American Institute of Architects Young Architects Award and was named in Crain’s Chicago 40 Under 40. She currently teaches at Northwestern University and The School of the Art Institute of Chicago.

Gabriela Carrillo
Principal, Taller |Mauricio Rocha + Gabriela Carrillo|

Gabriela Carrillo Valadez graduated with honors from the Faculty of Architecture of Universidad Nacional Autónoma de México (UNAM). She has collaborated with Mauricio Rocha since 2001, and in 2011, they created Taller |Rocha + Carrillo|. Their most representative projects include: the School of Plastic Arts and the San Pablo Academic and Cultural Center in Oaxaca; Library for the Blind and Visually Impaired in Ciudadela; Criminal Courts for Oral Trials in Pátzcuaro, Michoacán; Deans Building School of Commercial Banking; and Cuatro Caminos Photo Museum in Mexico City.

In 2016, Carrillo worked on “The Great Animal Orchestra” exhibition at the Cartier Foundation in Paris, and on the Pavilion for Hermès at the Milan Furniture Fair. She has presented lectures and led workshops at universities in Mexico, the U.S., and South America and her work has been published nationally and internationally.

Taller |Rocha + Carrillo| has received two Gold Medals from the Biennial of Mexican Architecture. Their work has also been recognized at the Ibero-American and Panamerican biennials. In 2012, the UNAM Faculty of Architecture awarded the firm the Federico Mariscal Chair, its highest prize for professional development, and in 2014, the Architectural League of New York presented them with its Emerging Voices Award. Carrillo was named “2017 Woman Architect of the Year” by The Women in Architecture Awards, presented by The Architectural Review and The Architects’ Journal.

Maurice Cox
Planning and Development Director, City of Detroit

Maurice Cox is a nationally acclaimed community designer and leader of the public interest design movement. He is widely respected for his ability to incorporate active citizen participation into the urban design and planning process. Cox has a reputation for developing bold — yet achievable — plans that become tools for civic discourse and empowerment, embraced by diverse sectors of the community.

Currently the planning and development director for the City of Detroit, Cox is in charge of the long-term vision for a redeveloped Detroit — improving Detroit’s neighborhoods, developing strategies to boost stable areas of the city with new business and residential development, and devising uses for the vast tracts of vacant lots and other city owned properties.

Previously, Cox served as associate dean for community engagement at Tulane University’s School of Architecture and director of the Tulane City Center, a university-affiliated practice operating at the intersection of design, urban research, and civic engagement throughout New Orleans. He also served as design director of the National Endowment for the Arts (NEA) from 2007-2010, where he led the NEA’s Your Town Rural Institute, the Governors’ Institute on Community Design, the Mayors’ Institute on City Design, and oversaw grants to the design community across the United States.


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