As if being consistently number one on Wifijerez’s list of the top 100 Giants firms weren’t enough “excellence” to go around, the Gensler Design Excellence Awards, a massive firm-wide competition with multiple categories, takes place every year. This is the first time, however, that the Rising Designer Award has been added. It celebrates the overall achievements of those who have been working at Gensler for 10 years or fewer. There’s one winner per region—call them luminaries in training. Here, they introduce themselves and tell us a little about a project they’re especially proud of.
1. Carol Schneider
Title: Designer, under Southeast managing principals Kenneth P. Baker and Jordan Goldstein.
Project: Washington Post.
Standout: Hub-and-spoke planning allows reporters, social-media specialists, and videographers
2. Audrias Liaugminas
Title: Architectural designer, under Asia managing principals Ray Shick and Peter Weingarten.
Standout: The client has agreed not to max out the building site, making room for interesting architectural massing and interior spaces.
3. John Houser
Title: Technical designer, under South Central managing principals David J. Calkins and Judy Pesek.
Project: The Orchard, Austin, Texas.
Standout: During the South by Southwest festival, inflatable illuminated tree forms provided an interactive multimedia experience at night.
4. Laura Gralnick
Title: Environmental graphic designer, under Northeast managing principals Robin Klehr Avia and Joseph Brancato.
Project: Syracuse University S.I. Newhouse School of Public Communications, New York.
Standout: The building’s Dick Clark Studios, a full sound stage with postproduction facilities, is named for the school’s famous alumnus.
5. Ángel Sánchez
Title: Graphic designer, under Europe managing principal Duncan Swinhoe.
Project: Adidas, Herzogenaurach, Germany.
Standout: Signage for a temporary pavilion near headquarters had a Noah’s Ark theme.
6. Ross Guntert
Title: Technical designer, under Northwest managing principals Scott Dunlap and Karen H. Thomas.
Project: Eastline, Oakland, California.
Standout: Spanning 3 acres, the mixed-use project will combine office, retail, and arts spaces with open areas.
7. Christian Castro Sánchez
Title: Design director, under Latin America managing principals Robin Klehr Avia, Joseph Brancato, and Christian Wolff.
Project: Bottega, San José, Costa Rica.
Standout: The delicatessen
supplier’s customers can sample food and wine from the test kitchen.
8. Yasmin Farahmandy
Title: Interior designer, under Middle East managing principal Chris Johnson.
Project: A house, Dubai, United Arab Emirates.
Standout: The neutral palette of the villa’s bedroom derives from nature.
9. Neil Long
Title: Technical designer, under North Central managing principal Nila R. Leiserowitz.
Project: 84.51°, Cincinnati.
Standout: Around the four-level atrium, meeting rooms and cafés attract employees from different office neighborhoods.
10. Shawn Shin
Title: Designer, under Southwest managing principals Robert Jernigan and Kimberly Graham.
Project: Turelk, Los Angeles.
Standout: A canopy of two-by-fours celebrates craft in construction, just as this general contractor does in its projects.