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William Whitley

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Information about William Whitley

Profile image of William Whitley

Profession

Category:
BusinessMakers
Occupation(s):
Architect
Business Chief Executive

Favorites

Favorite Color:
Earth Tones
Favorite Food:
Catfish
Favorite Time of Year:
Summer
Favorite Vacation Spot:
California
Favorite Quote:
None

Birthplace

Born:
4/29/1934
Birth Location:
Rochester, New York

Profession

Category:
BusinessMakers
Occupation(s):
Architect
Business Chief Executive

Favorites

Favorite Color:
Earth Tones
Favorite Food:
Catfish
Favorite Time of Year:
Summer
Favorite Vacation Spot:
California
Favorite Quote:
None

Birthplace

Born:
4/29/1934
Birth Location:
Rochester
See how William Whitley is related to other HistoryMakers

Biography

Architect and business executive William N. Whitley was born on April 29, 1934 in Rochester, New York and raised in Warren and Cleveland, Ohio. Whitley’s father was a chemist; his mother an actress. He graduated from Kent State University in 1957 with his B.S. degree in architecture, and went on to serve as a captain in the United States Air Force from 1958 until 1960.

In the 1960s, Whitley joined his brother, James, in operating Whitley/Whitley Architects and Planners LLC, a full service architectural and planning firm specializing in institutional design, sport facility design, and commercial housing design, where he served as vice president and project principal. Whitley/Whitley Architects has provided a substantial amount of work in Cleveland and the State of Ohio for various city and state public agencies, as well as services for cities and community groups in cities throughout the United States, including Saint Louis, Missouri; Indianapolis, Indiana; Fort Wayne, Indiana; Gary, Indiana; Chicago, Illinois; Saginaw, Michigan; Buffalo, New York; Rochester, New York; New York City, New York; Orlando, Florida; Atlanta, Georgia; Reading, Pennsylvania; Washington, D.C. and San Diego, California. Whitley/Whitley was involved with work on Cleveland’s Tower City Center, the Cleveland State University Convocation Center, Lincoln Junior High School, the Lee-Harvard Branch of Cleveland Public Library, the Central Area Multi-Service Center, and the Cleveland Clinic Guesthouse development. Other projects have included Kent State University's Fashion Museum, Cuyahoga County Community College's Learning Center, and Cleveland’s John F. Kennedy Recreation Center. Whitley’s firm has also designed numerous housing units and worked on several rehabilitation projects.

Whitley/Whitley Architects and Planners LLC has received many awards and honors, including the Progressive Architecture Design Award, the HUD Biennial Design Award, Burlington Awards, the House and Home Award, the Ohio Prestressed Concrete Design Award, the Ohio Masonry Council/ASO Award for Excellence in Masonry Design, the Cleveland Chapter of Architect’s Building Design Award, the East Ohio Energy Conservation Award, and the ASO Honor Awards Certificate of Merit.

Whitley has three children: Kyle, Kym and Scott.

William Whitley was interviewed by The HistoryMakers on February 12, 2014.

See how William Whitley is related to other HistoryMakers
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  • Tape: 1 Story: 1 - Slating of William Whitley's interview
  • Tape: 1 Story: 2 - William Whitley lists his favorites
  • Tape: 1 Story: 3 - William Whitley describes his mother's family background
  • Tape: 1 Story: 4 - William Whitley talks about his mother's career aspirations
  • Tape: 1 Story: 5 - William Whitley talks about his father's upbringing and education
  • Tape: 1 Story: 6 - William Whitley describes how his parents met
  • Tape: 1 Story: 7 - William Whitley describes his mother's personality
  • Tape: 1 Story: 8 - William Whitley talks about his siblings, pt. 1
  • Tape: 1 Story: 9 - William Whitley talks about his siblings, pt. 2
  • Tape: 1 Story: 10 - William Whitley describes his earliest childhood memory
  • Tape: 1 Story: 11 - William Whitley remembers his family's move to Ohio
  • Tape: 2 Story: 1 - William Whitley remembers his early awareness of race
  • Tape: 2 Story: 2 - William Whitley describes his experiences as a twin
  • Tape: 2 Story: 3 - William Whitley describes his early education in Warren, Ohio
  • Tape: 2 Story: 4 - William Whitley describes his early experiences of religion
  • Tape: 2 Story: 5 - William Whitley talks about his neighborhood in Cleveland, Ohio
  • Tape: 2 Story: 6 - William Whitley remembers his early interest in architecture
  • Tape: 2 Story: 7 - William Whitley remembers playing sports in junior high school
  • Tape: 2 Story: 8 - William Whitley recalls playing football at John Adams High School in Cleveland, Ohio
  • Tape: 2 Story: 9 - William Whitley remembers his early instruction in architecture
  • Tape: 2 Story: 10 - William Whitley recalls his decision to attend Kent State University in Kent, Ohio
  • Tape: 2 Story: 11 - William Whitley remembers his football teammates at John Adams High School
  • Tape: 3 Story: 1 - William Whitley talks about the Black Economic Union of Ohio
  • Tape: 3 Story: 2 - William Whitley recalls his experiences at Kent State University in Kent, Ohio
  • Tape: 3 Story: 3 - William Whitley remembers meeting his wife at Kent State University
  • Tape: 3 Story: 4 - William Whitley describes his experiences in the U.S. Air Force
  • Tape: 3 Story: 5 - William Whitley remembers his internship with Robert P. Madison
  • Tape: 3 Story: 6 - William Whitley recalls the start of his career as an architect
  • Tape: 3 Story: 7 - William Whitley recalls the founding of Whitley and Whitley, Architects and Planners
  • Tape: 3 Story: 8 - William Whitley talks about the impact of Mayor Carl Stokes' election
  • Tape: 4 Story: 1 - William Whitley talks about his experiences of racial discrimination in the architecture field
  • Tape: 4 Story: 2 - William Whitley remembers the development of Whitley and Whitley, Architects and Planners
  • Tape: 4 Story: 3 - William Whitley talks about how decisions are made in the architecture industry
  • Tape: 4 Story: 4 - William Whitley talks about mayoral politics in Cleveland, Ohio
  • Tape: 4 Story: 5 - William Whitley describes his international travels
  • Tape: 4 Story: 6 - William Whitley remembers winning a Progressive Architecture Award
  • Tape: 4 Story: 7 - William Whitley talks about the role of risk taking in architectural design
  • Tape: 4 Story: 8 - William Whitley talks about the importance of listening to clients
  • Tape: 4 Story: 9 - William Whitley recalls his work with the East Cleveland City School District, pt. 1
  • Tape: 5 Story: 1 - William Whitley recalls his work with the East Cleveland City School District, pt. 2
  • Tape: 5 Story: 2 - William Whitley talks about building the Wolstein Center at Cleveland State University
  • Tape: 5 Story: 3 - William Whitley talks about mandated architecture requirements
  • Tape: 5 Story: 4 - William Whitley talks about forging relationships with tradespeople
  • Tape: 5 Story: 5 - William Whitley talks about the staff of Whitley/Whitley Architects and Planners LLC
  • Tape: 5 Story: 6 - William Whitley talks about securing architectural contracts
  • Tape: 5 Story: 7 - William Whitley reflects upon his career
  • Tape: 5 Story: 8 - William Whitley describes his advice to aspiring African American architects
  • Tape: 5 Story: 9 - William Whitley talks about the black architecture community
  • Tape: 5 Story: 10 - William Whitley describes the material selection process
  • Tape: 5 Story: 11 - William Whitley describes his hopes and concerns for the African American community
  • Tape: 5 Story: 12 - William Whitley talks about the leadership of Mayor Carl Stokes
  • Tape: 5 Story: 13 - William Whitley talks about his daughter, Kym Whitley
  • Tape: 5 Story: 14 - William Whitley describes his sons
  • Tape: 6 Story: 1 - William Whitley reflects upon his legacy
  • Tape: 6 Story: 2 - William Whitley talks about his wife
  • Tape: 6 Story: 3 - William Whitley describes how he would like to be remembered
  • Tape: 6 Story: 4 - William Whitley narrates his photographs