The Spring 2018 issue of Context offers a few interesting perspectives in the broad and complex topic of housing. 

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March 12, 2018
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Member News

KSS Architects Elevates 7 Employees

By Emma Ignaszewski
Top row, left to right: Jason Chmura, David Friedman, David von Stappenbeck. Bottom row, left to right: Alicia Weaver, Beth Emig, Juliet Geldi, Mounir Tawadrous

KSS Architects, a national design firm focused on architecture, interior design, and planning, is pleased to announce the promotion of seven employees. The elevation of Jason Chmura, David von Stappenbeck, and David Friedman to Senior Associate, and Alicia Weaver, Beth Emig, Juliet Geldi, and Mounir Tawadrous to Associate reflects each individual’s dedication to the firm’s success. 

Jason Chmura, AIA, LEED AP BD+C brings a wide spectrum of experience to all projects. As an architect for projects establishing national models in urban solutions like AeroFarms and Teachers Village, Jason’s drive to integrate community outreach, urban vibrancy, and collaborative, user-focused design results in inventive, intentional design solutions. With varied project expertise including housing, education, cultural, agricultural, and performing arts facilities, he understands how to balance pragmatic needs and architectural style to craft buildings that express a client’s vision. A LEED Accredited Professional, Jason brings his passion for environmental sustainability to every project, spearheads the firm’s Sustainability Design Group, and leads KSS’s participation in the ACE Mentor Program at local high schools.

Pamela Rew, FAIA, Partner at KSS, says, “Jason has a great depth of commitment to the communities and clients we partner with—he really embeds himself in projects, building strong relationships and reaching to elevate the impact and quality of each project. New Jersey’s urban centers are having a renaissance—and Jason is at the center; many are projects with quirk and uniqueness, game changers for our firm and for our clients.”

David Friedman, AIA, LEED AP BD+C believes that the built environment can improve people’s lives. Having worked in all phases of design—from programming to construction documents—he understands the collaboration necessary to create exceptional places. As an architect, carpenter, and furniture designer, he loves seeing how things come together—from figuring out the detail and connection of materials, to working with the team, seeing the finished built work and serving the community at large. For David, design is a collective effort, bringing together client, user, architect and builder.

Ed Klimek, AIA, NCARB, Partner at KSS, says, “David has been a fantastic mentor to other architects and interns in the firm and is responsible for completing a large body of work in a collaborative manner. He’s stepped up to the plate in the pursuit and execution of large and complex projects. 

David von Stappenbeck is an integral part of the design team, transforming concepts for massing and layout into clear sets of constructible documents. His project involvement ensures project work is cutting-edge, achievable, and cost-effective. David’s specialized knowledge in building envelope systems and technologies allows for optimized building performance, while maintaining budget and design fidelity. At KSS, David is dedicated to the proliferation and streamlining of knowledge, through mentoring staff, developing firm standards, conducting detailed QA/QC studies, and leading the Technical Practice Group.

Merilee Meacock, AIA, PP, LEED AP, Partner at KSS, says, “David has made a huge impact in the firm at not only a project level but also at a staff level. He not only elevates the work, but elevates all of us by upholding the design vision throughout the life of the project with humility and sophistication, the sign of a true leader.”

Alicia Weaver, AIA, LEED AP BD+C Alicia not only strives towards distinction in her professional career, but also seizes opportunities to uncover potential in her professional and local communities. Alicia’s role in the firm is informed by her tactful project leadership, exemplary drive toward greatness, and intuitive anticipation of a project’s needs while keeping an eye toward green building practices, data-driven analysis, and relationship building. She has spearheaded architecture, construction, and engineering mentoring programs at area high schools, and she is a leader in defining the future of industrial development through design that engages in identity-building and placemaking to promote economic development.

Ed Klimek, AIA, NCARB, Partner at KSS, says, “We look to Alicia for the pulse of KSS—she holds the office together. Alicia has grown incredibly from an intern to a designer with great strength in design, and from a project architect into a project manager who facilitates the resources of a project through to completion.”
“Alicia not only strives towards distinction in her professional career, but also seizes opportunities to uncover potential in her professional and local communities. She has spearheaded architecture, construction, and engineering mentoring programs at area high schools, and she is a leader in defining the future of industrial development through design that engages in identity-building and placemaking to promote economic development.”

Beth Emig, RA, LEED AP BD+C has a diverse range of experience on a variety of project types including educational, corporate, medical, and industrial. Beth thrives when working collaboratively with clients to understand their needs and the hidden design potential in the challenges they face, whether the project is a renovation, new construction, or a study of existing conditions. Her understanding of schedule and team coordination drives effective cost-conscious design solutions fulfilling each project’s unique goals.

Merilee Meacock, AIA, PP, LEED AP, Partner at KSS, says, “Beth gets work done professionally, efficiently; she has a phenomenal collection of skills. We have grown to admire Beth through her work on Bancroft—she is a technical driver of change. She thrives and rises to every occasion, and exhibits leadership in her capacity to take initiative and always find a solution.”

Juliet Geldi, RA has a diverse design background that includes higher education, museum and exhibit design, charter schools, and stormwater management planning. She served as principal of a small firm focused on high-end residential projects before returning to the design of public and institutional architecture. She holds to the modernist belief that aesthetics can enhance people’s lives, and that the beauty that comes from a well-designed building should be accessible to all. She has enabled KSS to elevate the level of understanding of interior and exterior materials in the firm’s work, supporting the creation of spaces that are rendered more unique, beautiful, and functional through their materiality. 

Pamela Rew, FAIA, Partner at KSS, says, “The work of the firm has really matured thanks to Juliet’s focused depth of materiality to every project. She leads research and study for the firm’s library and to embed a wisdom for each project. Juliet thinks in light, texture, scale, color and resilience—then designing though a connection to the local environs and current engineering of materials so each moment of the building resonates.  Additionally, Juliet brings a commitment and a respect that to interactions with our clients and team members so that every level of our projects aligns.”

Mounir Tawadrous, RA, LEED AP brings a diverse perspective to each project, with a design background that spans mixed use, education, corporate, and planning work, nationally and internationally. Equally adept at client and consultant coordination, he understands what it takes to see a project through to successful completion, on time and on budget. Whether new construction, renovation or historic preservation, Mounir handles every facet of the design process for a wide range of clients. His passion for technology has manifested in his leadership of the digital design group for the firm.

Merilee Meacock, AIA, PP, LEED AP, Partner at KSS, says, “Mounir takes responsibility and ownership, seeing through each project with a high degree of thoughtfulness and attention to complexity. His leadership in applying digital and technological tools propels advances in design and pushes the firm forward.”

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About KSS Architects
KSS Architects is a full-service architecture, planning, and interior design firm in Princeton, New Jersey, and Philadelphia, Pennsylvania. Since our founding in Princeton in 1983, KSS Architects has matured, growing in aspirations, capacity, and caliber. KSS today has a staff of near 60 talented and dedicated design professionals passionate about creating built environments that stimulate learning, commerce, and community. Our clients are leaders in the fields of business, industry, education, development, cultural and social impact. Our mission? To create meaningful and lasting change that impacts our clients, our firm, and our world.

Learn more at www.kssarchitects.com 

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