The Impact of One ...
Detroit native and architecture alumnus helps rebuild the city
Rainy Hamilton, Jr., FAIA, ’78 is founder of Hamilton Anderson Associates, Inc., an architectural firm in downtown Detroit’s Harmonie Park that designs both buildings and their settings.
As a native Detroiter, Hamilton attended Detroit Public Schools and Cass Technical High School. He says, “I took all that I learned and applied it daily to my work in Detroit as an architect creating an exciting space in our urban environment.”
The firm established an endowed scholarship for architecture students in their third to fifth year, with special consideration given to those minorities who attended high school in Detroit.
He notes that architecture and landscape together create an environment that can lift up neighborhoods and commercial areas in the city. “My focus on urban design is a natural fit,” he says. “I want the scholarship to help minority students who have similar aspirations to help rebuild the city of Detroit.”
The amount awarded helps students with the extra expenses associated with college, such as books and study abroad. “Students appreciate the assistance. It gives them a financial boost,” he says.
In addition, his firm offers some job opportunities to UDM students through internships and staff positions.
—Rainy Hamilton, Jr. ’78
Hamilton is presently involved with the “Detroit Works Project,” which has significant input from his alma mater. This project is a long-term planning process to improve the quality of life for Detroit residents. He notes that UDM’s commitment to Detroit and its presence in the city give it an important role in this endeavor.
The challenge is to make the city an attractive, desirable place to live as it realigns to a major population decline, he notes.
Hamilton is president of the Detroit chapter of the National Organization of Minority Architects (NOMA). He had a major role in hosting the 40th anniversary for the organization in Detroit this fall. In serving his community and his profession, Hamilton continues to be a role model for architecture students.