Heather Mertes Promoted to Senior Associate at KMA Architecture & Engineering

KMA Architecture and Engineering (KMA) today announced the promotion of Heather Mertes to senior associate

Online PR News – 25-April-2013 – San Diego, CA – KMA Architecture and Engineering (KMA) today announced the promotion of Heather Mertes to senior associate.

Over the last five years at KMA, Heather has increasingly assumed an important role in the day to day leadership of the firm. In addition, she has inspired and lead clients through the design and construction process, initiated an approach to design/build where innovation is key, and stretched boundaries to generate creative, sustainable and affordable solutions. Heather’s past experience in the design and management of multi-family housing, commercial, and retail developments has also been a valuable addition to the KMA team.

“Heather’s promotion to Senior Associate is a recognition of her skills and achievements as an architect and an acknowledgement that we see her playing an even more important leadership role in the future of KMA,” said Robb Walker, managing partner. “She believes design needs to be brave, bold, and smart, and that the process must continuously bridge the widening gap between the design and construction industry, and she will help KMA lead this charge.”

Between 2003 and 2007 she was a project manager / associate with one of the foremost integrated design firms on the West Coast, GGLO in Seattle, where she worked on two transit-oriented developments for one of the nation’s largest apartment developers and owners, AvalonBay. At GGLO, she honed her design and management skills completing the Avalon at Mission Bay II (a 313-unit high-rise and low-rise urban infill apartment development in a former railroad yard in the Mission Bay district of San Francisco), and Avalon Dublin Station (a 5-story wood framed 305-unit apartment “wrap” development directly north of the East Dublin/Pleasanton BART Station). She also spearheaded the design of a 404-unit, mixed-use development integrated with an existing shopping mall in Factoria, Washington for Fairfield Residential.

Between 1995 and 2003 she was a project manager / associate with CDA Architects in Seattle (now CDA+Pirscher Architects Inc.) focused on large scale commercial and retail developments in north Seattle. Over a span of eight years with CDA she developed a working ethic deeply rooted in value-added design, client-driven solutions, and collaborative working relationships with contractors and clients. She designed prototypes for Walgreens and Bartell Drugs and thousands of square feet of build-to-suit office and retail, linking key company business strategies and real estate. One of her first design positions right out of college was with a former architecture professor of hers, Thomas L. Bosworth, FAIA in Seattle. The position was a valuable transition for her between the academic and professional realm where she developed a keen design philosophy and strong appreciation for simplicity, proportion, and craftsmanship.

A California-born architect, Heather studied at the University of California, San Diego on an Alexander and Elizabeth Irvine Memorial Scholarship and then received a Bachelor of Arts in Architectural Studies from the University of Washington in Seattle. She is a licensed architect in the State of California and a LEED AP (BD +C). She is also on the Education + Programs and Marketing Committees with the San Diego chapter of Commercial Real Estate Women (CREW). One of her passions outside of work is giving old homes a new lease on life, especially when there is a tight budget. She lives in the College Area in a 1952 ranch-style home she recently transformed with her husband.

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