Portrait of a UTA Family
The Taylor family's association with UTA and its preceding institutions began in 1911. It continues today through Lloyd Clark and his granddaughter, sophomore Alida Eggen.

Birth of Nations spawned UTA family affair
With the family home on land now occupied by UTA's South 40 parking lot, it's not surprising that seven Nation siblings attended neighboring North Texas Agricultural College in the 1930s and 1940s.


Designed with a global view
New dean brings international experience
to School of Architecture

Improving technology will be a priority of School of Architecture Dean Martha Ellen LaGess, who assumes her duties Sept. 1.

“As dean of the School of Architecture, my aim is to guide UTA to a position of leadership in the expanded architectural field that networked computing makes possible,” said LaGess, a partner with the architecture firm LaGess McNamara in London.

“Initially, our work will focus on enabling the school to make technology transfers inside the University with other academic disciplines and outside the University with community, industry and government.

“Networked computing intertwines people and physical places with ‘placeless’ texts, images and databases. This process creates new proximity between ideas and things that formerly seemed far apart.

Architects can play an important role in the far-reaching social revolution these changes bring about, but only if we combine new expertise in the architecture of information with our traditional expertise in the architecture of physical environment.”

School of Architecture Dean Martha LaGess
has worked with some of the most prestigious architecture firms in Europe.

LaGess, 47, is a unit master with the Architectural Association, an internationally known private architecture school in London. She has lectured and been a visiting critic for many organizations and universities in Europe, Asia and North America. They include the Royal Institute of British Architects in London, the Mackintosh School of Art in Glasgow, Milan Polytechnic University in Italy, Hong Kong Polytechnic University in China, Han Yang University in Korea, and Arizona, Harvard, Rice and Tulane universities in the United States.

In addition to her academic work, she has been associated with some of the most renowned architecture firms in Europe. In London in the late 1980s and early 1990s, she worked with James Stirling, Michael Wilford and Associates and with Kohn Pederson Fox, for whom she served as project manager for the development of a landmark mixed-use skyscraper scheme for a site in the Hague, Holland.

“I am very impressed with the balance that she will bring to the School of Architecture,” said UTA Executive Vice President for Academic Affairs and Provost George Wright. “She has a very good scholarly background and has had a very successful career as an architect.”

Dr. Wright also cited LaGess’ emphasis on training and mentoring architecture students to assure they are well-prepared in their profession. “Her excellent contacts throughout the United States and Europe will greatly benefit our students and bring additional visibility to what is already one of the state’s best schools of architecture,” he said. “She is also committed to working with the Dallas and Fort Worth architecture communities.”

Lee Wright, the current interim dean of architecture, noted that LaGess has worked with some of the best architects in England and the United States. Richard Cole, dean of the UTA School of Urban and Public Affairs and chair of the search committee, calls LaGess “a person with vision and the ability to get things done.”

LaGess earned two bachelor’s degrees in architecture from Rice University and also studied in the Architectural Association’s Graduate History and Theory program in London. She has 16 years experience as a professional architect and 10 years experience as an educator.

– MP

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