An award-winning architect with experience in preservation, restoration, and adaptive use of historical buildings, Nakita Reed has been an early leader in focusing her work on sustainable strategies in design and construction.
From her unique vantage point in the industry as a licensed black female architect specializing in historic preservation and sustainable design, she has helped break down some silos in the profession, notably between architects, preservationists, and sustainability professionals.
“Architecture, preservation, and sustainability as individual professions have a massive impact on the built environment and are all impacted by unconscious bias,” she says. “Being able to show the value and relevance of how telling the full story of a place adds depth and context to the history, instead of watering it down, has been something I’ve been excited to do.”
Reed, winner of the 2022 AIA Young Architects Award, joined Quinn Evans’ Baltimore office in 2019. Before joining Quinn Evans, she co-founded a woman-owned architecture firm that specialized in historic preservation and sustainable design.
A past chair of the Maryland Green Building Council, she’s on the board of the Baltimore Architecture Foundation and is the host of Tangible Remnants, a podcast that explores the intersection of architecture, preservation, sustainability, race, and gender.
“I’m optimistic that the future of the profession is more integrated with climate action goals,” she says. “Historic buildings and traditional techniques are often sidelined in talks about sustainability, which is a missed opportunity. We’re not going to build our way to net zero, and reusing the existing and historic buildings that we currently have is going to continue to be important moving forward.”