Jessica Marie Forsythe, AIA died last month on June 22, 2014. Forsythe was president and co-owner of 4-Most Group Inc. Architects, which she founded with her husband, Richard Forsythe, AIA in 1997. Born on January 18, 1949 in Millersburg, Forsythe was the first female to participate in technical drafting classes at Knoch High School and one of the first women to go through the architectural program at the University of Cincinnati, where she received her Bachelor of Architecture. She worked for Burt Hill Kosar Rittelman from 1975 to 1997, when she left to start her own firm.
In a profession that is predominantly male, she not only survived but excelled in both a large firm setting and within her own practice. “My mother defied the notion that men could be better architects and forged not only amicable but friendly relationships with many of the contractors she worked with,” recalls her daughter and 4-Most Group business manager Bonnie Forsythe. “In fact, some of our best clients are contractors because they recognize that we not only know what it’s like to be in the field but because we… took the time to understand the process from start to finish, in and out of the office.”
Forsythe also went out of her way to be a mentor, taking time to foster emerging architects, especially other women. “I think, in each of the young women who have worked for us over the years, she saw a piece of herself – unsure in a world dominated by men, yet firm in her resolve to be the best no matter what obstacles fell into her path.”
Jessica Forsythe was a member of the American Institute of Architects (AIA), the National Council of Architectural Registration Boards, and the National Association of Home Builders Certified Green Professionals.
Memorial donations can be made to With Humble Hearts, c/o 4-Most Group Inc., 267 Pittsburgh Road, Suite 4, Butler, PA 16002, or at their website www.withhumblehearts.org.