Mrs. Barbara Lee Diamonstein/
Barbaralee Diamonstein-Spielvogel

b.  27 Jan 1932 - New York City, NY

Boston College, B. A., New York University, M.A., Ph.D., 1963

Speech, English, Speech Arts Club Sponsor

Currently Residing in New York City

Democrat. Delegate to Democratic National Convention from New York, 2000

1961 Anchor, p. 27 Barbaralee Diamonstein-Spielvogel David Patrick Columbia and
Barbaralee Diamonstein-Spielvogel
Barbaralee Diamonstein-Spielvogel
03/02/06 Image Courtesy of AIArchitect,
February 7, 2005
Images Courtesy of David Patrick Columbia's New York Social Diary - May 10, 2005,
Volume V, Number 81
Photographs by Jeff Hirsch/; Cutty McGill (Blass)


Appointment of Two Members of the United States Holocaust Memorial Council

June 2, 1987

The President today appointed the following to be members of the United States Holocaust Memorial Council:

Barbaralee Diamonstein-Spielvogel, of New York. She will succeed Edward Sanders. Currently, Mrs. Diamonstein-Spielvogel is a writer, television interviewer, and producer. She has appeared on ABC Video Enterprises ARTS Network, CBS, NBC, WNET, Metromedia, and major stations in Boston, Washington, Philadelphia, Los Angeles, Chicago, and Miami. Mrs. Diamonstein-Spielvogel is the author of 13 books and has published numerous articles. Mrs. Diamonstein-Spielvogel graduated from New York University (Ph.D., 1963). She is married and resides in New York, NY. Mrs. Diamonstein-Spielvogel was born January 27, 1932, in New York, NY.

Richard M. Rosenbaum, of New York. He will succeed Terrence Des Pres. Since 1984 Mr. Rosenbaum has been counsel to the chairman of the board and director of government relations and public affairs for Integrated Resources, Inc. He is also a consultant with Nixon, Hargrave, Devans & Doyle. From 1977 to 1984, Mr. Rosenbaum was a partner with Nixon, Hargrave, Devans & Doyle. Mr. Rosenbaum graduated from Hobart College (B.A., 1952) and Cornell Law School (LL.B. and J.D., 1955). He is married, has four children, and resides in Rochester, NY. Mr. Rosenbaum was born April 8, 1931, in Oswego, NY.



Office of the Press Secretary

For Immediate Release February 26, 1996


The President announced today his intent to appoint Barbaralee Diamonstein-Spielvogel to the Commission of Fine Arts.

Barbaralee Diamonstein-Spielvogel of New York is the author of eighteen books focused on the arts, architecture, design and public policy. She is the longest term commissioner (1972 to 1987) to have served on the New York City Landmarks Preservation Commission. From 1987 to 1995, she was chair of the New York Landmarks Preservation Foundation, and currently serves as the chair of the Historic Landmarks Preservation Center. She was a member of the Art Commission of New York City from 1990 to 1994, is a founding board member of the New York Landmarks Conservancy (since 1973), and served as a board member of the Municipal Art Society from 1973 to 1983. In 1987, she was named to the U.S. Holocaust Memorial Council, and in 1993, she was named to the Archives Partnership Trust of New York State. She has been the curator of six museum exhibitions that have travelled nationally, and is the interviewer/producer of numerous television series. Ms. Diamonstein-Spielvogel earned a doctorate from New York University and received honorary doctorates from the Maryland Institute of Arts and Longwood College, Virginia. In 1994, she became the first woman to be honored with the Founder's Award of Pratt Institute.

The Commission of Fine Arts advises on matters of design affecting the appearance of Washington, D.C., in particular the architecture of public buildings, parks and memorials and private structures in certain areas of the capitol.



  AIArchitect, February 7, 2005

Ten Very Special People Tapped for Hon. AIA

The tenets of the Institute highlight the importance of communication and collaboration with our allies and clients throughout the building industry. One of the most important messages AIA members can share through our professional society is gratitude toward those who support and uplift architects and architecture; we can acknowledge them as part of the AIA family. In this spirit, the Institute is very pleased to bestow on 10 special people the title of Honorary AIA. Please allow AIArchitect a moment of nepotism as we celebrate with two people near and dear to us: Sue Koonce, Hon. AIA, and Pam Kortan, Hon. AIA.

Barbaralee Diamonstein-Spielvogel, Hon. AIA

Throughout her 40-year career, author, civic activist, journalist, broadcaster, producer, and preservationist Barbaralee Diamonstein-Spielvogel has served as a leading voice on some of the defining urban issues of our time. The author of 19 books on architecture, preservation, and the allied arts, she has been at the forefront of making visible the historic built environment of New York City. She has the distinction of having served the longest term as commissioner on the New York City Landmarks Preservation Commission (1972–1987) and also held the position of chair of the New York City Landmarks Preservation Foundation from 1987 to 1995.

At a national scale, Diamonstein-Spielvogel was appointed to the U.S. Commission of Fine Arts in 1996, reappointed in 2001, and continues to serve on the commission. She also sits on the boards of numerous related groups. In addition to her civic involvement, she has been the interviewer/producer for six television series concerning the arts and architecture, for the Arts and Entertainment network as well as ABC, CBS, and NBC. “Throughout my professional relationship and personal friendship with Barbaralee, I am well aware of her unparalleled support of art, architecture, and urban issues,” wrote AIA Gold Medalist Richard Meier, FAIA, in support of her nomination. “She is a consistent ameliorative presence in New York’s social landscape.”


I came across a notice in our Richmond  newspaper that I thought would be of interest to many of you Typhoons.  The notice is about an exhibit of black and white photographs of "Landmarks of New York" by a former NN Teacher known then as Barbara Lee Diamonstein.  We, Cousin Gene (Collins Glave - of SC), Steve Hochman (of VA), Ronnie Burroughs (of VA), Johnny Canepa and others, were in her Homeroom Class.  If any of you have wondered "Where is Mrs. Diamonstein today" check out her very interesting Website of Barbaralee Diamonstein Spielvogel.  This lady has come a long way since teaching at NNHS. 

Think she will "receive" Cousin Gene and me at her Park Avenue abode on our next trip to NY?

- Neta Collins Hastings ('60) of VA - 03/01/06

WOWZERONI-RINI!!! Thanks, Neta!
Hey, "Nothing Ventured; Nothing Gained!"  GIGGLES!!!


I also had Mrs. Diamonstein and it was great to see all that info about her!  I will let my daughter know. 

- Jean Poole Burton ('64) of RI - 03/02/06

Wasn't that just fabulous?!? Thanks, Jean!


I'm delighted to see the great stuff about Barbra Lee.  She was my favorite teacher at NNHS.  She was working on her masters degree when I had her as a sophomore.  That would have been 1960.  She was so glamorous!  Her (first) husband, Alan Diamonstein, obviously had $$.  Maybe there was some in her family as well.  Her maiden name was something like Dorcus.  I remember many of her clothes were monogrammed "BLDD".  I think that's probably the first time I ever saw monogrammed clothes.  

One day in class, she was dressed more than usual and told us that she was giving her oral defense for her thesis that afternoon.  Well. as she lectured, she walked.  And if you remember the heels of 1960, they were extremely high and very pointed.  Well, as she walked back and forth, she somehow pivoted on one foot and lost her balance momentarily.  She recovered it by planting her other foot down firmly - and straddled the trash can that sat beside her desk!  I particularly remember Skip Smith (OJ) ('63 - of VA) trying hard not to laugh and getting all red in the face.  Someone, though I don't remember who, got up, stepped to the front of the room and gave her his hand.  She took it, leaned on it and dis-entangled her leg from the far side of the trash can.  She was immediately composed.

She was such a great teacher.  She spoke well, challenging our vocabularies to keep up with her.  She also challenged our minds to stretch and learn.  I always looked forward to her class and to her.

Some time in the 1980s, I was watching a program on PBS and when the credits ran, I saw her name listed as the producer.  I wrote to WGBH, the Boston PBS affiliate that had produced the program.  I asked them to forward my letter to her, which they did.  She wrote back to me.  She sent a note saying that she was glad I had enjoyed the program, complemented me on working in engineering, etc.  I knew when I saw the envelope that it was from her because she had a very distinctive hand writing and I remembered it from all those years before.  There was no return addy so I took that to mean that she didn't want to correspond.  But that hasn't dampened my memories of her.  

Here again, we have evidence of how fortunate we were to have had the faculty we did at NNHS. 
Somebody knew what they were doing in NN in those days, at least at the school board.

- Kathy Pilgrim Clark ('63) of VA - 03/02/06

Amen to that!  Thanks, Kathy!

Stacked Books clip art courtesy of - 05/05/08

Back to Teachers

Return to NNHS Class of 1965