The son of Scandinavian immigrants, Arthur F. Hussander grew up in Chicago. He received a degree in architecture from Cornell University in 1889. In 1900, he was a draughtsman in the Architect’s Department of the Board of Education. Two years later, he had been promoted to serve as one of seven superintendents of construction. In 1903, his salary as superintendent was $45 per week. He worked in this position under three successive head architects: William B. Mundie, Robert B. Williamson and Dwight H. Perkins. When the Board of Education removed Perkins from his position in 1910, they appointed Hussander Acting Architect. He continued to work under the “acting” status for two years, and served as the official Architect to the Board from 1913 through 1920.
In contrast to the progressive design of schools during the tenure of Dwight H. Perkins, Hussander produced handsome schools in a Classical style. He did, however, follow up on some of Perkins’s design philosophies such as providing windows in every classroom, raising the grade levels of basements to provide healthier spaces, and improving ventilation. Hussander prepared plans for more than 60 new Chicago Public School buildings and 45 additions to existing structures. His school designs include Lindblom Technical School; Senn High School; Carter Harrison Technical School (now Maria Saucedo Scholastic Academy); and Bell, Herzl, Parkside, Peirce, Pope, Thorp, and Riis elementary schools are examples of his work. Hussander also maintained a small practice designing apartments, commercial buildings, and churches in Chicago. He served as the First Vice President for the Illinois Society of Architects in 1917, and as President in 1918 and 1919.