Associate Professor of Architecture
Arts Engineering Advisor
Co-director, IDEAS Program
Ph.D., University of California, Berkeley
Bruce Thomas teaches architectural history and architectural design in the Department of Art, Architecture and Design at Lehigh University, Bethlehem, PA. At Lehigh, he is also director of the Arts-Engineering program, co-director of IDEAS (Integrated Degree in Engineering and Arts and Sciences) and a past chairman of the Department of Art and Architecture. Trained as an architect, he came to the field of architectural history from a background of more than a decade of professional practice. He has been a Registered Architect (State of Michigan) since 1981. He holds a B.Science in Architecture (1972) from the University of Cincinnati and an M.Arch. (1982) and Ph.D in Architecture (1989) from the University of California, Berkeley.
His interests focus on American architecture and the built environment, particularly in the early 20th century between the wars. He is a contributing author to a number of journals and books, including The Buildings of Pennsylvania: Philadelphia and Eastern Pennsylvania (2010); Rural and Urban: Architecture between Two Cultures (2010); Streets: Critical Perspectives on Public Space (1994) and The Company Town: Architecture and Society in the Early Industrial Age (1992), A recent publication, “Pragmatism and Modern Architecture in 1920s America,” received the Jerome Stern Award from the American Culture Association for the essay of the year 2009. He has presented papers and invited lectures in England, Wales, Ireland and Belgium as well as across the United States, in venues ranging from the Artists Union in London, to Oxford University, to the Savannah Symposium, to the Pennsylvania Classics Association.
He is a four-term member of the Pennsylvania State Board of Historic Preservation and has served on grant and award committees for the Pennsylvania Historic and Museum Commission and Preservation Pennsylvania. He is the recipient of numerous awards and grants, including the Fankhauser Fellowship from the University of California, Berkeley, the Baldwin Teaching Award from the University of Oklahoma, and a Paul J. Franz grant, a Gipson Institute grant from Lehigh University and the Lindback Foundation Award for Distinguished Teaching from Lehigh University in 2013.