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Meet Your SAH/SCC Board

SAH/SCC is proud to have an all-volunteer board, filled with people who give generously of their time in developing programming for the membership. This is the first of a series of President’s Letters profiling our board members.

Author and educator Merry Ovnick has been on the SAH/SCC board for more than 20 years. She has worked tirelessly on behalf of the organization, curating events and acting as the Chapter’s President for several years.

Merry earned her Ph.D. in history at UCLA, and for many years taught cultural, urban, and architectural history at California State University, Northridge, and LA Valley College. Retired from teaching, Merry maintains a busy schedule as editor of Southern California Quarterly (the publication of the Historical Society of Southern California) and traveling the world in search of architecture and adventure.

Merry is the author of Los Angeles: The End of the Rainbow (Balcony Press, 1994), which looked at domestic architecture as a tool of social history. Now out of print, members would be wise to seek out copies of this rare and important work.

Over the years, Merry has organized many fascinating events for SAH/SCC, including “Wallace Neff: Backwards and Forwards,” “The Romance of Water and Power: Architecture as Advertisement,” “Eichler Homes,” and “Climate Change: Mid-Century Modern in La Jolla.”

One of our newer board members, Kimberly Bahnsen McCarron, organized the DTLA Adaptive Reuse Hard Hat Tour this past March. Kim received a Bachelor of Arts degree in Architectural Design from University of Washington, Seattle, and her Master’s of Architecture and Certificate of Heritage Conservation from USC. After working as a preservationist and designer in the East and Midwest, she relocated to her native Los Angeles in 2015, and went to work at Page & Turnbull. She is now an architect at Pfeiffer Partners, where she brings a balanced perspective to projects involving existing buildings.

Kim first volunteered with the Society of Architectural Historians when the national conference was held in Los Angeles in 2016. Kim worked with me on the tour of Bakersfield and it became apparent that she was just the kind of person we needed on the board: proactive, thoughtful, organized, and engaged. She dazzled me with her Spanish language proficiency, and we bonded over having both worked on independent projects featuring women’s insane asylums.

Kim is the liaison with the Los Angeles Times for SAH/SCC, oversees our social media efforts, and is an active member of the Website Committee dedicated to revamping and improving the organization’s online presence.

Next time you are at an event, be sure to say hello to Merry and Kim and thank them for all of their hard work for the members of SAH/SCC.

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