This Building Embodies the Struggle for Gender Equality in San Francisco

 | May 4, 2022

Photo courtesy of Wikimedia Commons.

Located in San Francisco, the Women’s Building – also known as Edificio de Mujeres – was founded in 1979. It is a space that hosts a community led by women who bring the resources that other women and girls need to achieve equal and full participation in society.

The late 60s and early 70s saw the end of an era of repression and injustices. The civil rights movement started the fire that empowered other social revolutions to address the inequalities in America. The women’s movement exposed the roots of sexism and brought to light many problems that had been kept quiet, such as domestic violence, rape, and misogyny.

Roma Guy and another group of lesbian leaders founded the Woman’s Building in 1971, which was later relocated to its current location in 1979. The neighborhood didn’t welcome the center with open arms. In its early years, it was deliberately set on fire. This action caused more than $50,000 in damages.

However, the attacks did not flank the community center’s goals. Fifteen years later, in 1994, after its founding, a mural was commissioned by seven muralists. They created the largest mural in San Francisco: MaestraPeace Mural.

Women’s Building of San Francisco Nuestro Stories 2
Photo courtesy of

The mural is a public art piece covering both sides of the building and reaches all five floors. It portrays the power and contribution of women throughout history.

Women’s Building was declared a National Historic Landmark In 2018, a well-received honor for a center that has supported more than 170 organizations working to improve women’s lives. Some of those foundations are La Casa de las Madres, The Women’s Foundation of California, and Lavender Youth Recreation & Information Center.

Today, two Latinas are in charge of the center: Teresa Mejia, Executive Director of the Women’s Building, and Tania Estrada, the program director.

Interesting facts:

  • The Women’s Building welcomes 25,000 customers and visitors each year.
  • The MaestraPeace Mural showcases the power and contributions of women throughout history.
  • Seven artists collaborated to create the mural that covers the building.
  • In 1999, the Women’s Building underwent a thorough and extensive renovation of its structure. It reopened a year later.

Location: San Francisco

Address: 3543 18th Street #8, San Francisco, CA 94110.

Google 360-View: Visit the Women’s Building here.

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