Meet Katherine Darnstadt

Katherine is the founder of Latent Design, an architecture firm focused on social, economic and environmental impact beyond the building to create more sustainable communities.  She was the director of Architecture for Humanity Chicago and led the chapter in providing over $1.2M in pro bono design services to Chicago and international projects including Fresh Moves Mobile Produce Market and the ACTIVATE! Public Space Design Competition.


What do you believe? 

You are going to have to do it sometime, might as well be now.

What inspires you? 

I know what will inspire me in a few short weeks - all the other women on this site now that I know about them, their shape-shifting work and general badassery.  Unexpected connections and awareness keep me constantly inspired.

A little known fact about yourself? 

My son and I have the same birthmark.

If you had to change careers what would you want to do? 

Private investigator or eccentric millionaire. I got the eccentric part nailed.

What do you suck at? 

Subtly, using the appropriate amount of words, singing. This is not, oh, I’m so shy bad at singing. This is serious tone-deaf singing.  I have cleared a karaoke bar before and that is the one of the most inclusive places known.

Favorite quote? 

Some [wo]men give up their designs when they have almost reached the goal. While others obtain a victory by exerting, at the last moment, more vigorous efforts than ever before. – Herodotus a.k.a. some old Greek guy

Have you ever stolen anything? 


Want more? Chat with Katherine on twitter or watch her present at Chicago Ideas Week

Sidenote: Katherine was recently named one of AIA Chicago’s Young Architects of the Year