Debra Gerod, FAIA, LEED AP Partner, Project Manager
Ms. Gerod is an internationally recognized architect, who orchestrates strategic and groundbreaking collaborations, guides architects around the world to achieve their vision of landmark architecture, mentors the next generation, and shares her knowledge with the profession. She joined Gruen Associates in 1988, became a Vice President in 1997, and was named a partner in 2002.
As head of the public architecture section at Gruen Associates, she has developed an unique practice niche by combining the strengths of design firms with her exceptional management and technical skills to create landmark architecture. Through this highly detailed, hands-on management style, she has become a leader of the profession as an executive architect. Her outstanding work has made a significant impact, enhancing the careers of top designers and their firms by successfully delivering their unique visions of architecture to clients and the public. In partnership with renowned architects, she has built a tremendous portfolio of significant projects for major public architectural spaces, including embassies, performing arts centers, courthouses, convention centers, transit centers, and high-rise office buildings. Her architectural collaborations are almost exclusively among the largest, most complex projects in the industry. Since the early 1990s, she has created and/or led nearly two dozen creative teams, large and small firms, on projects totaling more than $2 billion.
Ms. Gerod has brought architectural masterpieces to life through her partnerships with many world-renowned designers. Ms. Gerod’s indelible mark can be found in these works because, through her management expertise, she transferred the visionary’s dream into a tangible reality, resulting in inspired accomplishments for all participants. Her extensive portfolio of work has produced major public architectural spaces, including
embassies, performing arts centers, courthouses, convention centers, transit centers, and high-rise office buildings. Working with diverse international talents and personalities ranging from Cesar Pelli, Thom Mayne, Christian de Portzamparc, Norman Foster, Rem Koolhaas, and James Ingo Freed, among others, Ms. Gerod has developed practice principles embracing the unique style of each. On every project, she artfully combines the creative talent of the designer with her equally critical management expertise and technical skills. These joint successes have established her as a leader in translating the designer’s dream into the client’s fulfillment—a unique, widely acknowledged talent developed over more than 24 years of detailed, hands-on management.
She is a registered Architect in the State of California and a Fellow, American Institute of Architects; member of the American Institute of Architects, California Council; American Institute of Architects, Los Angeles Chapter; California Architectural Foundation; ACE Mentoring Program; LEED Accredited Professional. She was the recipient of the “2006 Woman of Excellence Business” award from the YWCA Pasadena-Foothill Valley Section. She earned her Bachelor of Environmental Design from the University of Colorado/Boulder, Boulder, Colorado. Ms. Gerod has been invited to share her knowledge with the profession through many papers and presentations, locally and internationally.
Eric Haesloop, FAIA, LEED AP Turnbull Griffin Haesloop Architects, San Francisco, CA
Eric Haesloop is a principal with the award-winning firm Turnbull Griffin Haesloop Architects in San Francisco, California. A principal since 1986, he is a Fellow of the American Institute of Architects and has served as a juror for numerous AIA design awards programs.
Eric graduated from Washington University in St. Louis and then received his Masters of Architecture from Yale, where he studied under Charles Moore, James Stirling and Aldo Rossi. After graduating he worked at Cesar Pelli & Associates in New Haven for three years.
His firm's work focuses on site-specific sustainable residential and institutional architecture, and has won over sixty awards. Eric has taught architectural design at Yale College, Stanford, and UC Berkeley and was the Friedman Visiting Professor of Professional Practice.
Patricia Rhee, AIA, DBIA, LEED AP Associate Principal, Ehrlich Architects
Patricia Rhee has been a member of Ehrlich Architects since 2000 and an Associate Principal of the firm since 2013. She has served as Project Architect and Project Designer for several of the firm’s most challenging and award-winning projects, and has also served as the lead designer in many of firm’s design competitions – both international and domestic – including the winning schemes for the United Arab Emirates’ Federal National Council Parliament Complex, the GSA John M. Roll Federal Courthouse, and the University of California, Irvine’s New Contemporary Art Center. She received her Master's degree in Architecture from Harvard's Graduate School of Design where she was awarded the Thayer Prize and received her Bachelor's degree from the University of Pennsylvania. Patricia is an active member of the AIA, Asian American Architects/Engineers Association, the Design-Build Institute of America, and the US Green Building Council.
Chester A. Widom, FAIA California State Architect - appointed by Governor Brown in December 2011, and former President of both the National American Institute of Architects (AIA) and the California Council AIA
Chester A. Widom FAIA was the founding partner of WWCOT, a 185 person (at the time of his retirement from the firm) architectural, interior design, planning and forensics firm with four offices in California and an office in Shanghai, China. After leaving WWCOT, he served as the Senior Architectural Advisor for the Los Angeles Community College District’s $6.1 Billion construction program. In December of 2011, Governor Brown appointed him California State Architect As a former President of both the National American Institute of Architects (AIA) and the California Council AIA, Chet is recognized as an international leader in the profession. He has been awarded Honorary Fellowship by the Japan Institute of Architects, The Federacion Colegios de Arquitectos de la Republica de Mexicana and by the Royal Architectural Institute of Canada and, served as the 2011Chancellor of the College of Fellows for the American Institute of Architects. He is the 2011 recipient of the AIA’s Edward C. Kemper Award for service to the profession.
Chet was the 16th recipient of the Distinguished Alumni Award by the School of Architecture at USC where he has taught and currently sits on the school's Board of Councilors. He has been a frequent guest lecturer at numerous universities including Harvard, Yale and UCLA. In addition to his leadership of both the National and California AIA, he previously served on the Building and Safety Commission, the City Planning Commission and the Elected Charter Reform Commission for the City of Los Angeles, and as a member of the Hospital Building and Safety Board for the State of California (OSHPD). In December of 2011 he served as member of the Bond Oversight Committee for the Los Angeles Unified School District.