“I am fascinated by the fact renewal strategies of urban neighborhoods often create development plans that never seems to reflect or consciously include those who already reside there. Through this fellowship I hope to demonstrate the value of designing inclusive communities, particularly those in urban areas with communal, economical, and spatial planning needs. The goal is to integrate this value into VCH’s already established redevelopment strategies and continue their mission to reduce homelessness and maximize affordable housing.”
With Venice Community Housing, Dawn will serve as a key member of the housing development team as VCH initiates two new construction projects focused on increasing affordable and permanent supportive housing options in Venice, as well as reinvest in several older properties. She will also be an integral part of their property management, resident services, YouthBuild and advocacy teams and engage a wide variety of other community members and stakeholders in an approach to community development and project design.
Prior to the Fellowship, Dawn was a design professional in Richmond, VA, where she worked in construction and maintenance, and also served on the city’s Urban Design Committee. Dawn holds a Bachelor of Science degree in Architectural Engineering from North Carolina A&T State University and a Master of Architecture degree from the University of North Carolina-Charlotte, where she focused on the social and economic impacts of Hip Hop on Architecture.