Tara Dudley is currently teaching as a Lecturer for both the Interior Design History I and II courses in the School of Architecture’s Interior Design Program. She has a long-standing relationship with the School of Architecture having obtained her doctorate (Architectural History) in 2012 and her master’s degree (Historic Preservation) in 2003. Dr. Dudley has also collaborated on interdepartmental preservation work, including preparing architectural descriptions and analyses for National Register for Historic Places nominations such as that for St. Paul African Methodist Episcopal Church in Dallas, Texas. Her research methodology includes creative utilization of archival resources and conducting oral histories. Notably, she has applied this approach to her study of the architectural activities of New Orleans’ gens de couleur libres (free people of color); their influence on the physical growth of New Orleans; and the historical, cultural, and economic implications of their contributions to nineteenth-century American architecture.
Dr. Dudley has 12 years professional experience as an architectural historian for Hardy∙Heck∙Moore, Inc. a historic preservation and cultural resources management consulting firm located in Austin, Texas. She has served as project manager and lead architectural historian on various projects involving the preparation of historic furnishings reports and interpretive planning for historic sites. Dr. Dudley has varied experience with preservation and cultural resources management projects including but not limited to conducting historic resource surveys at reconnaissance and intensive levels; preparing National Register of Historic Places nominations, historic district guidelines, preservation case alternatives; and others work involving mitigative recording and Section 106 compliance. She has conducted extensive historical archival research and contributed written portions of various types of reports. Her writing capabilities include historic contexts, property descriptions, and statements of significance. Dr. Dudley’s experience also includes creating measured drawings, photograph preparation, USGS mapping, and report formatting and compilation. She has technical expertise in the requirements of HABS/HAER Levels II and III documentation and material handling and processing. Her education and experience fully satisfy Secretary of the Interior’s Professional Qualification Standards as an Architectural Historian.
- Ph.D., Architectural History, The University of Texas at Austin, 2012
- M.S.A.S., Historic Preservation, The University of Texas at Austin, 2003
- B.A., Art History, Princeton University, 1999
National Register District Nomination for Boston National Historic Site, Boston, Massachusetts (in progress)
Historic Furnishings Report, Hampton National Historic Site (in progress)
Historic Furnishings Report, Show Barn, Lyndon B. Johnson National Historical Park, 2017.
Historic Resources Survey of East Austin, 2016.
Historic Furnishings Report, White House Aides and Communications Complex, Lyndon B. Johnson National Historical Park, 2016.
Combined Historic Structure and Historic Furnishings Report, Secret Service Command Post, Lyndon B. Johnson National Historical Park, 2014-2015
Historic Furnishings Report and Implementation Plan, Portion of Landscape Design Office, Frederick Law Olmsted National Historic Site, 2010-2011
Historic District Design Guidelines for Leesville, Lake Charles, and Crowley, Louisiana, 2011.
Interpretive Brochure Development for “Shadowland Café,” West, Texas, 2011.
Historic Furnishings Report for Bunker Hill Granite Lodge, Boston National Historical Park, 2009-2011
Historical Interpretive Marker, Visitors Center Exhibit, and Docent Manual Project, Tule Springs Ranch at Floyd Lamb State Park, Las Vegas, Nevada, 2011
Interpretive Plan and Interior Rehabilitation of Interior of Foreman’s House, Las Vegas, Nevada Tule Springs Ranch, Floyd Lamb Park, 2008 – 2009
Historical Interpretive Program in Response to a Natural Disaster for Naval Air Station Pensacola, Pensacola, Florida, 2007
Reports as Primary Author
Furnishing Plan for the French Legation Museum, Austin, Texas, 2006
National Register Nomination for the William Buckner and Sue Houston House, Gonzales, Texas, May 2003 (listed to the National Register of Historic Places August 2003)
“Seeking the Ideal African-American Interior: The Walker Residences and Salon in New York” Studies in the Decorative Arts (Fall/Winter 2006-2007)
“A Tale of Two Interiors,” Platform (Winter 2003), biannual publication, School of Architecture, University of Texas at Austin
“Fine Things are Without Value: Inside the Shadows.” Interpretive guidebook. Shadows-on-the-Teche, New Iberia, 2001
“African and African-American Art.” Brochure. The Art Museum, Princeton University, 1999
“Gens de couleur libres and the Social History of Architecture in Tremé,” Williams Research Center Annual Symposium “Perspectives on New Orleans Architecture: Past, Present, Future,” February 2016.
“Revealing the contributions of the gens de couleur libres to New Orleans’ antebellum architecture: a new a new approach,” Louisiana Historical Association Annual Meeting, March 2015
“The gens de couleur libres and the architecture of antebellum New Orleans: a new approach,” Society of Architectural Historians Annual Conference, April 2014
“The Influence of the gens de couleur libres on the architecture of Antebellum Louisiana,” SAH Annual Conference, April 2006
African American History in East Austin. Jane Jacobs/ Jane’s Walk USA local neighborhood tour. April 2016.
“Palimpsests of Color: Transition, Gentrification, and Hidden History in Austin’s Black Neighborhoods,” Society of Architectural Historians Annual Conference, April 2014