WHAT DOES AN ARCHITECTURAL DESIGN MANAGER DO?
I am in charge of the design department for the architects and interior designers; we work together with the engineering team to get the job done. We are an eclectic group. We work on designs of all sizes, but our focus is healthcare at the moment. It’s my job to coordinate the efforts of the interior designers and architects and spearhead any collaboration between them all the way through to final design.
WHAT ORIGINALLY SPARKED YOUR INTEREST IN DESIGN?
I was encouraged as a child to draw and explore with a pencil. I also love art and history, so those two things melted together when I started architecture school. I earned a scholarship to study in Chicago and fell in love with that city and the architecture there. Met my wife there, and we ended up in Kalamazoo when I was lucky enough to find this company.
EVERYONE HAS TO START SOMEWHERE. WHAT WAS YOUR FIRST JOB?
The first job I ever got was working in the printing department for Shell Oil to help me pay for architecture school. My hometown, Aberdeen, is big in the oil industry. I was in the basement every day copying blueprints. It opened my eyes to the real world of industry and how much time and effort goes into any kind of large-scale project. When you see thousands of blueprints a day and have to copy them, it can be a mundane kind of job, but you also get experience.