When he was six years old, Todd Bertsch, AIA, moved with his family to Atlanta from Pocatello, Idaho. Through what he calls “serendipity,” Todd never left. He earned his architecture degree from the Georgia Institute of Technology and has spent his entire professional career in Atlanta. In 2008, he joined HOK as design director in our Atlanta office.
Todd and his wife, also an architect, live with their 11-year-old daughter in a house they designed together near Piedmont Park in Atlanta’s vibrant Virginia Highland neighborhood.
“I have seen Atlanta undergo a tremendous transformation over the past 30 years,” says Todd. “It is still young compared to Paris or …
As an addition to the original Moscow Chancery designed by HOK more than 20 years ago, the 241,000-sq.-ft. New Office Annex at the US Embassy in Moscow is one of the first embassies built under the new Department of State Design Excellence Program. It is scheduled to open in 2016.
At the request of our clients, Roger Schwabacher, AIA, and director of graphics Jim Doussard in HOK’s DC office recently designed and installed this display in the main lobby of the US Department of State’s Overseas Buildings Operations headquarters.
Bill Hellmuth, AIA, who joined HOK in 1991 and ascended to president in 2004, leads design projects worldwide. But he is especially proud of the local architectural contributions of HOK’s Washington practice, which is located in Georgetown’s historic Canal House. Under Bill’s leadership over the past two decades, the DC studio has designed more than 25 buildings across the city.
Why is contributing to Washington’s built environment so important to you?
BH: I am committed to cities. They are my focus. Washington is a high-energy city with great institutions and museums and terrifically interesting things to do. It’s a wonderful place to live.
Like a proud father, Kenneth Drucker, FAIA, notes that two of his New York team’s projects that began more than half a decade ago have opened in recent months: Harlem Hospital’s new Mural Pavilion and a replacement hospital for the University Medical Center at Princeton.
While keeping an eye on all of the projects coming out of HOK’s New York studio, Ken is also designing a headquarters for Korean energy company Samchully in Seoul and the Singapore Chancery infill building in Manhattan. He recently began design of a new ambulatory care center for New York-Presbyterian Hospital on a prominent Upper East Side site. Finally, he just returned …
Susan Henderson, a healthcare architect and medical planner in HOK’s Los Angeles studio, is burning the creative candle at both ends, so to speak. Armed with master’s degrees in both architecture and film production, she is an architect by day and a documentary filmmaker on the side. She’s currently working with her fiancé, also a documentary filmmaker, on “Be Prepared,” a film featuring Girl Guides (Girl Scouts) fighting the HIV/AIDS epidemic in Kenya.
Architecture and film combine to feed Susan’s creative spirit. Here, she explains her love for both art forms:
Which came first, architecture or film?
I wrote my first screenplay when I was 12, so I guess you’d …
Rob Firth joined HOK’s London office in January after working in leadership roles for Capita Architecture and Austin-Smith Lord. His experience in strategic planning and practice development will be key to HOK’s plans to strengthen and expand the firm’s position in the UK, Europe and the Middle East. To learn more about Rob, we asked him five questions.
1. What attracted you to HOK and what will your role involve?
What attracted me was HOK’s great reputation and long and successful history of design quality and putting people first. I also was attracted by the wide portfolio of sectors and projects and the fact that HOK is a sufficient size to influence …
“My contribution to HOK has been to use my skills as a designer and entrepreneur to transform parts of our business,” says Riccardo. “I see my job as designing HOK for the next 25 years and there is no place more influential for that project than Asia.”
The story begins with an overview of HOK and its major clients in Asia, who according to Riccardo include “China Construction Bank, Banglalore …
He’s an architect who finds design inspiration in the works of Le Corbusier and a cyclist who has held Lance Armstrong’s wheel. He is currently completing designs of the retail podium for a trio of towers in Azerbaijan and has represented the U.S. in the Cycling Masters World Championships. While there are more acclaimed architects and faster bike riders, it’s difficult to imagine someone with more talent in both areas than HOK London architect Barry Hughes.
The transplanted Texan, who lives with his architect wife, Jacqueline, in London’s trendy Shoreditch neighborhood, is preparing to embark on an adventure …
Most architects with the prominence and portfolio of Gyo Obata are expected to publish some type of vanity book honoring their work and career.
Gyo wanted to mix it up a bit.
Rather than producing a standard puff-piece homage to himself, he decided to include the perspectives of his clients (what a novel concept). Active listening has always been a signature element of Gyo’s work, so the approach is fitting – and refreshing.
Building management here in HOK’s office at Metropolitan Square in St. Louis just gave us new access cards. HOK Brand Sheriff Kelly Bathe, a colleague in the Marketing and Communications group, was the first to point out that the pattern on the card, which is some sort of building logo, looks a little like the Dharma Initiative logo from the brilliantly trippy ABC show Lost.
Now I have to get back to work in the Orchid station before the Smoke Monster gets me. Lost wraps up its sixth and final season on Sunday night.
This holiday season, we are drawn to the uplifting stories of individuals whose resilience is an inspiration.
Our 2009 holiday e-card honors the creative spirit of Andrew Reach, an HOK architect whose career took an unexpected turn when he was diagnosed with a debilitating spine disease. Today, Andrew is an accomplished digital artist whose work inspires all of us.
Life at HOK’s own Valerie Greer just returned to St. Louis after spending six months working in the Singapore office, which she calls a “dynamic studio environment.” In this clip she talks about what she learned. “The more we are collaborating and working across continents,” says Valerie, “the more richness we bring to the solutions and the design work we do for our clients.”
You can learn more about Valerie’s career as an architect — and what’s on her iPod — here:
Thanks to Valerie for playing along. I’m pretty sure that if the job of “HOK Spokesperson” existed, she would be uncontested in her appointment. Of course we’d miss her too much in the design studio to ever let …
Jeff Reynolds, Jeff Strohmeyer, Clark Davis, Bob Blaha, JoAnn Brookes, Dennis Laflen, Tom Goulden, Joe Berra and Tim Tynan
If I actually knew how to golf, I would have raced out to Forest Park this past weekend — what a beautiful weekend it was – for the Third Annual Putting for Pooches Golf Tournament. I am a self-professed animal lover – here’s a pic of my basset hound Annabelle.
HOK had two teams in the 3rd Annual Putting for Pooches Golf Tournament. The team made up of Jeff Strohmeyer, Bob Blaha,
Today’s featured HOKer is a person I’ve been dying to get to know (I hear a lot about him – all good of course – but haven’t had the chance to work with him): the one and only Brad Crown. You’ll notice I was so intrigued that I actually ended up with six questions instead of five. Oops! Read on…
Q: How did you come to HOK?
A: I am a second-time HOK employee – I originally left the
Among the things I do best, one of them is thinking (really..!! i mean as compared to doing..!!). So, I was thinking about the content for my first blog post. And as usual I turned to my usual help – Google: “architecture”, “comics”. Some very interesting links came up. One that caught my attention was this one.
I was amazed with the blog this architecture master’s student has put together. Not only does it have some really cool post about renderings with 3d max and photoshop, it also has great examples of serious fun some architecture students are having.