Honoring Women Who Shaped Reston Development

Honoring Women Who Shaped Reston Development

Presentation on four pioneering women to be held on Thursday, March 15.

Chloethiel Woodard Smith designed both Waterview (pictured) and Coleson Clusters.

Chloethiel Woodard Smith designed both Waterview (pictured) and Coleson Clusters. Photo contributed


Carol Lubin.


Jane Wilhelm.


Priscilla Ames.

In honor of Women’s History Month, the Reston Historic Trust and Museum and Reston Community Center (RCC) will host a discussion of the pioneering women who shaped and influenced Reston’s early development. The event will take place Thursday, March 15 at 7 p.m. at RCC Lake Anne Jo Ann Rose Gallery. Presentations on four founding women, Chloethiel Woodard Smith, Priscilla Ames, Carol Lubin, and Jane Wilhelm, will be followed by a panel discussion led by Restonians Kohann Williams, Pat Mcintyre, Laura Thomas, and others.

  • Chloethiel Woodard Smith was an architect and urban planner in the D.C. area whose work was known nationally and internationally. At one point, she led the largest female-run architectural firm in the United States. As one of the original Lake Anne architects, she designed both Waterview and Coleson Clusters.

  • Priscilla Ames’ mission in life and as director of the developer’s Community Center was to welcome newcomers, share all the opportunities Reston had to offer, and refer those in need to the agency best equipped to help. She was indispensable to Reston families and to Bob. He recalled, “She stood at my side at all public functions, cueing me in on the names and proclivities of each person we were there to meet.”

  • Carol Lubin created the "Master Plan" for churches, schools, and community programs and social amenities in Reston before the first people moved in. Referring to Carol, Bob noted, “Reston drew enthusiastic, willing, excited people. When you get people like that, you’re going to be successful.”

  • Jane Wilhelm joined Carol Lubin in late 1964 and served as the first Director of Community Services and The Reston Foundation. Jane noted, “These first years of Reston were Camelot. Everyone who worked here was totally dedicated to the whole thing. It was a fascinating, new idea.”

In conjunction with this event, the Reston Historic Trust is acknowledging past and present influential women in all aspects of life in Reston including arts, government, education, sports, and business. For details and to add women to the list, visit https://www.restonmuseum.org/women-pioneers-of-reston.

Programs of the Reston Historic Trust & Museum are supported in part by Reston Community Center.