From Lavanya Ramanathan at the Washington Post on April 19, 2019:
To understand how a limestone-and-glass building on 14th and R streets NW ended up with same name as your high school best friend, it helps to know the origin myth.
It’s a tale of Elizabeth Taylor. And also: a branding team.
An outspoken AIDS activist, Taylor visited this corner in the early 1990s to dedicate the opening of a Whitman-Walker clinic that had been named for her. The Hollywood legend’s black hair was piled into a formidable cloud and an enamel pin in the shape of a ribbon was affixed to her cardigan, as she mingled with those working to fight an epidemic ravaging Washington. It was as indelible a moment as the vice-ridden neighborhood had seen.
So when, 25 years later, a plan emerged to build 78 apartments on the very same, now-gentrified corner, the memory endured. A list of more than 50 possible names generated by branding firm Revolver New York was whittled down to a few. One was “Untitled,” so there’s that. The favorite was “The Liz.”