Key Speaker

Betsy Williamson

Canadian architect Betsy Williamson, co-founder of Williamson Williamson (WWInc), is an enthusiastic proponent of high-quality design that is rooted in detail clarity and creative solutions balanced by focused project management.

Through various boards and committees, Betsy is also committed to engaging with the city in a greater capacity. Avice-chair of the Waterfront Toronto Design Review Panel, she actively contributes to the development of a culture of quality at an urban scale, signalling that high-quality design is a critical consideration for the development of Toronto’s waterfront and the city. Through the RAIC’s Age Friendly Housing Task Force, she works to address the responsibility of the architectural profession to create design solutions that assist older individuals to live well and safely in their community of choice – WWInc has engaged further with this subject over the years, completing a number of multi-generational family homes on small lots in Toronto.

Betsy, as an advocate for equality in the profession, co-founded BEAT (Building Equality in Architecture Toronto) with other like-minded architects. BEAT is dedicated to the promotion of equality by creating events and web content for the advancement of women in the profession and by providing mentorship, networking and leadership opportunities.

WWInc’s work has been recognised with several awards, including, in 2014, the Emerging Architectural Practice Award by the Royal Architectural Institute of Canada and the Emerging Voices Award by the Architectural League of New York. In 2015, Betsy was a finalist in the Architects’ Journal Emerging Woman Architect of the Year Award. In its early days, WWInc was awarded the Ronald J. Thom Award for Early Design Achievement from the Canada Council for the Arts and won the Canadian Prix de Rome for their research in the field of innovative wood construction. Betsy received her Master of Architecture from Harvard University and Bachelor of Arts with Honors in Architecture from Barnard College.