Roundtable Discussion: Starting an Architecture Firm
Moderator: Jeff McBride
David C. Bagnoli, AIA has over twenty years of experience in Architecture and Urban Design, including commercial mixed use, multi-family housing, performing arts, academic and hospitality architecture. He is a graduate of the University of Pennsylvania and the University of Notre Dame and retains an active interest in academics serving as visiting critic and guest lecturer at the University of Pennsylvania, The Virginia Polytechnic and State University, Catholic University and The University of Maryland. He has recently participated in the development of “Smart Growth at Colleges and Universities, A Primer” for the United States Environmental Protection Agency and has spoken on this important topic at the National Building Museum, the National Smart Growth Conference and the National Smart and Sustainable Campuses Conference. Before forming McGraw Bagnoli Architects, he was an Associate Principal with Cunningham | Quill Architects (2004–2011), and an Associate with William Rawn Associates, Architects, Inc. (1998-2004). Prior to that he served as a US Air Force Officer (1992–1997).
Mr. Bagnoli’s projects have received numerous design awards at the highest level of the profession, including a national Honor Award and two national Housing Awards from the American Institute of Architects (AIA), two national Charter Awards from the Congress for the New Urbanism, and awards from a variety of regional and state AIA chapters including the State of Maryland, New York, the Boston Society of Architects, Washington, DC, and the Virginia Society of Architects.
Griz Dwight, principal and owner of Washington, D.C.-based architecture and interior design firm GrizForm Design Architects, grew up in a handmade barn in Vermont and loved architecture ever since. He spent his youthful winters ski racing and his summers working construction. Dwight received his Bachelor of Arts from Williams College with a major in studio art. He then decided to combine his love of buildings and his construction experience with the design ideas developed in the art studio. Dwight graduated in the top of his class at the University of Pennsylvania receiving his Masters of Architecture and moved to Washington, D.C. in 1999.
Prior to starting his own firm in 2003, Dwight continued to work in construction, completed architectural internships, and worked at Adamstein & Demetriou Architects. Believing that architecture can provide more than a shield from the weather, Dwight decided to open his own firm in order to push the bounds of creativity and strive to produce original spaces that maintain an awareness of historical context. “I think that it’s the drive to improve on the last project that keeps us fresh and innovative,” said Dwight.
Adam McGraw’s award-winning work reflects a wide range of skills in the areas of residential design, adaptive reuse, institutional architecture, and equestrian master planning and facility design. Adam has a particular passion for the design of single family residential architecture, because he enjoys collaborating with clients on new houses and renovating existing spaces into unique architectural solutions.
Since graduating with a Bachelor of Architecture from Rensselaer Polytechnic Institute in 1994, Adam has developed his skills with a wide variety of projects. Before forming McGraw Bagnoli Architects, he was an Associate with Washington, D.C.’s Cunningham | Quill Architects (2005–2011), and with Blackburn Architects (2002–2005). Before that, he was a Project Architect with Dynerman Whitesell Architects in Washington and with Lyman Davidson Dooley, in Nashville, TN. Adam has received local and AIA awards for design efforts in single family, adaptive re-use, and master planning projects.
Sacha Rosen’s experience in architectural design and project management includes multifamily residential, urban mixed-use, commercial office, chancery, hospitality, and campus planning projects. He coordinates the firm’s work in Historic Preservation, leveraging his training in historical research and international experience in preservation methods and theories. Sacha oversees the business development activities of the firm, and leads the public outreach and entitlement activities for projects subject to discretionary jurisdictional approvals.
He has a Master of Architecture degree from the University of Oklahoma, where he received the Alpha Rho Chi Medal and taught courses in the history of architecture. He was a Regents’ Fellow in American History at the University of Michigan, Ann Arbor, and served an internship in Historic Preservation in the Republic of Malta through the US component of the International Committee on Monuments and Sites (US/ICOMOS). He has a Bachelor of Arts degree in History, Summa Cum Laude, from the University of Oklahoma, where he was elected to Phi Beta Kappa, received the Savoie Lottinville Prize, and was named Outstanding Junior.
Lee Rubenstein’s experience in architectural design, interior design, and project management includes multifamily residential, commercial offices and interiors, mixed-use, institutional, municipal, and retail projects. He coordinates the firm’s work in Commercial Interiors, having served as a key resource in this project type at previous firms. Lee oversees the graphic design components of the firm, including project design and documentation. He has a Master of Architecture degree from the University of Pennsylvania, where he was awarded the E. Lewis Dales Traveling Fellowship, the Samuel K. Schneidman Fellowship, and the Harlan Coornvelt Medal. He has a Bachelor’s Degree, Summa Cum Laude, from Hamilton College, where he was elected Phi Beta Kappa and awarded the Charles J. Hasbrouck Prize in Art History.
Presentation: Keeping the Boat Afloat
Yolanda is the Senior Principal and owner of Hickok Cole Architects, a large commercial architecture and interiors firm located in Washington, DC. She has over 25 years of base building and interior design experience in a variety of project types from large-scale, mixed-use developments to small commercial interiors, both around the world and in the region. She is widely recognized for her leadership in the region’s business community and for her work on many award-winning projects in the commercial/corporate, government, and institutional markets.
Prior to joining Hickok Cole Architects as a partner, Ms. Cole was a partner with Arlington-based LyrixDesign, which merged with Hickok’s firm to become Hickok Cole. LyrixDesign was one of the top 25 woman-owned and interior design firms in the region. She began her career with New York-based Kohn Pederson Fox Associates (KPF), where she was a senior designer of large-scale high-rise office buildings. While with KPF, Ms. Cole served as senior designer for the 1.2-million square-foot Chifley Tower in Sydney, Australia, where she lived for two years; and the award-winning Capital Cities/ABC headquarters in New York.
Roundtable Discussion: Transitions, Ownership, and Management
Moderator: Mike Rouse
T. Lee Becker, FAIA – Partner, Hartman-Cox Architects
Lee Becker joined Hartman-Cox Architects in 1974 and is a partner. During his time at Hartman-Cox, he has been responsible for overseeing the design and administration of a broad range of project types. These include award winning institutional, ecclesiastical, commercial office and mixed use, academic and residential buildings throughout the United States.
His academic projects include new buildings, additions and renovations that are typically in the sensitive historic core areas of some of America’s most cherished University campuses. Projects include the Duke University – Divinity School Addition next to the Duke Chapel; two projects adjacent to the Lawn at the University of Virginia; Mary Gates Hall on the Rainier vista at the University of Washington in Seattle; and the Woldenburg Art Center (formerly Sophie Newcomb College) at Tulane University.
Mr. Becker is a nationally recognized for his design of law schools, libraries and business schools. Examples include the University of Michigan Law School South Hall Addition; University of Michigan’s Lawyer’s Club Renovation; Law School at Washington University in St. Louis; the Law School addition at the University of Alabama in Tuscaloosa; the Law Library at the University of Connecticut; the Special Collections Library at The University of Virginia and the McIntire School of Commerce, a recently completed a 125,000 square foot addition to Stanford White’s Rouss Hall building at the south end of the Lawn. He has lectured on professional schools and urban design at the University of Virginia, the DC Chapter AIA, the Virginia Chapter AIA, the University of Maryland, Washington University in St. Louis, Johns Hopkins and Duke University.
He has over 20 years experience designing judicial facilities such as the US Federal Courthouse in Corpus Christi, Texas and the Lexington-Fayette County Circuit and District Courthouses in Kentucky. He most recently completed the Van Cise-Simonet Detention Center, a LEED Silver building that forms the new Judicial Plaza in Denver’s Civic Center.
Mr. Becker has an extensive design portfolio of commercial office building projects including 1200 K Street, 800 North Capitol Street, Pennsylvania Plaza, Market Square and Gallery Row, all in Washington, DC. He also designed 16 Market Square, a mixed use project in “LODO” Denver, Colorado and developed a master plan design for Greenpoint Landing in Brooklyn, NY.
In addition to academic, judicial and commercial work, Mr. Becker designed two high rise residential projects, The Wellington and The Empire in New York City, St Patrick’s Church and Day School in Washington D.C., Immanuel Presbyterian Church in McLean, Virginia (recipient of a national AIA Award) and the US Embassy in Kuala Lumpur. He recently completed a rooftop addition to the historic Hay-Adams Hotel and is currently designing the George Washington University Museum, both in Washington, DC.
Mr. Becker’s projects have received over 30 design awards at the local, regional and national levels. His work has been published in Architecture Magazine, Architectural Record, Progressive Architecture, Building Stone Magazine, Period Homes, Traditional Building Magazine, Inform and The Washington Post, among others.
He received his Bachelor of Architecture from the University of Maryland and is a Fellow of the American Institute of Architects. He is NCARB certified and a registered architect in the District of Columbia and five states.
Karl Stumpf, AIA, LEED AP BD+C – Senior Vice President, Global Practice Leader, Workplace, RTKL Architects
With nearly two decades of experience, Karl Stumpf directs the firm’s workplace practice group, overseeing RTKL’s focus on corporate and public clients. Karl’s cool demeanor and steady management style come from more than 10 years of experience in Washington DC, where he served as office director and focused on complex preservation commissions for Federal and private clients. Karl has redefined the firm’s position in the corporate sector, creating an arsenal of services — from strategic solutions and interior design to telecommunications and mission-critical engineering — that has allowed RTKL to emerge as a national presence.
Craig Williams – Principal, David M. Schwartz Architects
Craig Williams, Project Manager and Principal of David M. Schwarz Architects, Inc., has been with the firm since 1979. He received his education at The University of Maryland School of Architecture and was also an Architectural History teaching assistant. He has been registered in the District of Columbia since 1984.
Craig is known around the office for his sardonic humor and has mellowed tremendously over the years. One of the things he most appreciates about being an architect is learning through our work about the businesses and industries in which he has interests – Lunn Gallery & photography, Beringer & the wine industry, Concert Halls & classical music and opera.
Outside of the office Craig spends time with his wife Kim and their Dalmatian Lucky and pursues his interests in black and white photography, wine and cooking multi-course meals for friends and family – the latter is an activity he especially enjoys because it yields a first-class, gourmet feast and accompanying oohs and aahs in a fraction of the time it takes to complete a concert hall.