Lauren A. Hood is the Founder and Chief Visionary of the Institute for AfroUrbanism (IAU). The IAU is think tank and action lab in search of what it means to be Black and thrive.
In the Fall the IAU will launch a city wide research initiative and fellowship program, The Black Thriving Index: an annual program which seeks to identify the foundational social, structural, spatial and spiritual conditions necessary in order for Black folks to thrive.
In 2020, the American Institute of Architects (AIA) awarded her for her visionary approaches with the Charles Blessing Award for thought leadership in planning and civic issues.
As civic leadership is fundamental in understanding need and being able to drive change, she currently serves as the Chairwoman of the City of Detroit’s Planning Commission, Co-Chair of they City’s Reparations Task Force and as a Trustee for the Charles H. Wright Museum of African American History. In the Fall she joins the faculty at the Taubman College for Architecture & Urban Planning at the University of Michigan as Assistant Professor of Practice.
Lauren is an avid daydreamer and powerful manifestor who finds inspiration in the woods, near the ocean and in desolate landscapes where the veil is thin.