Nathelyne Archie Kennedy was born in Richards, Texas and raised in Conroe, Texas. She was the first female to receive an engineering degree from Prairie View A&M University, earning a Bachelor of Science in Architectural Engineering in 1959.
Ms. Kennedy worked 12 years as a Bridge Design Engineer in the firm of Alfred Benesch & Company in Chicago, Illinois. Later she worked three years as a Bridge Design Engineer for Bernard Johnson, Inc., in Houston. In 1981, she started her own venture, Nathelyne A. Kennedy & Associates, a civil and structural engineering firm.
Her company specializes in many facets of civil and structural engineering design and project/program management for projects involving highways, roadways, bridges, public transit and parking facilities, marine terminals, airport and air terminal facilities, rail systems, public schools and universities, sports complexes, correctional facilities, water and wastewater systems, and various types of buildings and special structures.
The firm provides services to such clients as Texas Department of Transportation, Port of Houston Authority, Harris County Toll Road Authority, Harris County-Houston Sports Authority, Metropolitan Transit Authority of Harris County, City of Houston, Houston Airport System, Houston Independent School District, Houston Community College System, University of Houston, Texas Southern University, and Prairie View A&M University, as well as to private engineering and architectural firms throughout Texas and the nation.
Ms. Kennedy’s efforts have received wide recognition and numerous accolades including: “Small Business Leadership Award” from the Metropolitan Transit Authority, Office of Business Development; “Outstanding MWBE Contractor in Professional Services” and several “Distinguished Service” awards from the City of Houston; and 1996 “Entrepreneur of the Year” from the Black Engineer of the Year Awards sponsored by U.S. Black Engineer magazine in Baltimore, Maryland. In addition, she was appointed to the Texas Turnpike Authority Board of Directors by former Governor Ann Richards and re-appointed by former Governor George W. Bush, serving on the TTA Board from 1992 through 1996.
In October of 2006, Prairie View A&M University honored her devotion to the school and its students by naming the School of Architecture building, which also contains the Texas Institute for the Preservation of History and Culture, the “Nathelyne Archie Kennedy Building”.
Ms. Kennedy’s entrepreneurial enthusiasm, leadership, and example have been a role model to others striving to become business owners and entrepreneurs; not just in engineering, but in many fields and types of business ventures.