AIA New Jersey Architects’ Storytime Presents LoriAnne Jones, AIA, Reading Dream Builder: The Story of Architect Philip Freelon

February 15, 2021

Reading Time: 2 minutes

AIA New Jersey Architects’ Storytime Presents LoriAnne Jones, AIA, Reading Dream Builder: The Story of Architect Philip Freelon


AIA Central Jersey President, LoriAnne M. Jones, AIA, LEED AP, shares her reading of Dream Builder: The Story of Architect Philip Freelon, written by Kelly Starling Lyons and illustrated by Laura Freeman. Gather your favorite children and click the link below to enjoy the story and learn about the life and work of Philip Freelon.


Philip Freelon’s grandfather was an acclaimed painter of the Harlem Renaissance. His father was a successful businessman who attended the 1963 March on Washington. When Phil decided to attend architecture school, he created his own focus on African American and Islamic designers. He later chose not to build casinos or prisons, instead concentrating on schools, libraries, and museums–buildings that connect people with heritage and fill hearts with joy. And in 2009, Phil’s team won a commission that let him use his personal history in service to the country’s: the extraordinary Smithsonian National Museum of African American History and Culture.

Dream Builder: The Story of Architect Philip Freelon celebrates a contemporary black STEAM role model, a man whose quiet work enabled the creation of an iconic building reflecting America’s past and future. With a stirring text by Kelly Starling Lyons, vibrant pictures by Laura Freeman, and an afterword from Philip Freelon himself, it is sure to inspire the next generation of dreamers and builders.

Here’s a list of some of the museums and spaces Philip Freelon designed or helped to design: National Museum of African American History & Culture (Washington, DC); National Center for Civil & Human Rights (Atlanta, GA), Museum of the African Diaspora (San Francisco, CA), Reginald F. Lewis Museum of Maryland African American History and Culture (Baltimore, MD), Harvey B. Gantt Center for African-American Arts + Culture (Charlotte, NC), Emancipation Park (Houston, TX), Durham Bulls Athletic Park (Durham, NC), Expansion of the Motown Museum (Detroit, MI), Mississippi Civil Rights Museum (Jackson, MS)


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