Class Acts

Former students touch base
with College of Architecture



Paul Wahlberg '50 BARCH, died May 24 in Houston. He founded a firm that became Wahlberg, Morales, Wright, Waite and Associates, which performed design projects in 23 states. He was a longtime supporter of Texas A&M athletics, providing a permanently endowed 12th Man Foundation Scholarship in 1978, and provided a new home for Aggie golf teams, the Paul Wahlberg '50 Aggie Golf Learning Center.  He was a member of the Houston Golf Association for 52 years, serving as its president in 1970. See full obituary.


Raymond Conley '51 BARCH retired in 1993 from Stone Webster as principal architect. "Since then I have dabbled in real estate and done some architectural consulting," he said. He's looking forward to his  60th class reunion. "Architecture  has changed immensely since my days in the top floor of the old Academic Building," he said. "So much new technology and the use of the computer to design and build, with our imagination as the only restraint."


Willard Sholar '54 BARCH retired in January 2010 from MHSM Architects in Shreveport and Lufkin. He lives in Shreveport.


Val Canon '56 BARCH has enjoyed his retirement since February 2009. He lives with his wife in Dallas.


Outstanding alumnus Velpeau Hawes '59 BARCH works as a consultant in North Texas. He is currently working with Thom Mayne on a $180 million museum in Dallas..


William Wagner '63 MARCH is looking for students/faculty who were in the architecture program between 1954-64. Hired by Ernest Langford, he was a fulltime faculty member during those years. "This is ancient history, but I'd like to know if anyone from that era is still around. I  had great students during those years." Contact William at


Raymond Gomez '64 BARCH, '65 ARCHCONST retired from practice at RGA Architects and Planners in Dec. 2006. He's painting, creating sculpture and works on paper from his studio in Northport, NY on Huntington Bay on Long Island Sound. His work has been exhibited in numerous shows and galleries in New York, at the AIA office in Washington D.C., and in Los Angeles.

James Kell '64 BLA has retired as president of James Carroll Kell, Landscape Architect, Inc. "I'm retired and loving it," he said.


The Orange County, Calif. Register noted Adrian Smith’s design of the world’s tallest building in its Jan. 4, 2010 edition. Smith studied architecture at Texas A&M for four years spanning 1962-66 before taking a job in Chicago.

“It’s so tall it would tower over much of the weather here,” wrote Brittany Levine.

Smith spent some of his younger years in San Clemente, 60 miles southeast of Los Angeles.

Bardin Nelson '66 BARCH has retired after serving as a technical architect at IBM and a senior systems analyst at Chevron Information Technology company.


Bob Hunter, ’67, ’71 BARCH, MARCH, might have a suit of armor in his future. Hunter, the Hillsborough County, Fla. City-County Planning Commission executive director, was honored as an outstanding alumnus of the college at ceremonies Nov. 13, 2009.  “If the college knew how many battles Hunter has waged in his effort to manage growth in Hillsborough, they would have given him a suit of armor,” blogged Steve Otto of the Tampa Tribune on Jan. 25, 2010.


Edward Stasney,'69 BSBC has retired from international engineering and construction. He is now teaching anger management, domestic violence, and parenting classes in Katy, Texas.


James Hill, Jr. '70 BED is living in Bryan. Though retired, he still draws house plans for local builders.


Eric Dalton '71 BLA is president/landscape architect at Dalton Land Design in Arlington, Texas. "We sold our two office buildings and moved into our new home office in January 2009," said Eric. "It's the best thing I've done, since I am disabled now, being a bilateral amputee." He said it hasn't slowed him down much, though, and things are busy at the firm despite the economic downturn. The firm's website is at

Leonard Heinze '71 BARCH, COSC opened his own architecture firm, K. Heinze Enterprises, Inc. in 1998. He has two grown children, and his son Kevin got married last summer.


Michael White ’74 BED, ’76 MARCH has been the president of his own consulting firm since 2007. He provides a variety of capital project management services to corporate, hospitality and educational clients. His projects range from renovations, budgeting maintenance, and supporting energy projects all over the country.


Tony Chaffin '77 BED, '82 MSCOMG, is a project manager at Baylor Construction Services. He said there's four Aggies in the office, making them the ruling majority!

J. Robert Wainner '77 BLA operates a freelance landscape architecture business in Plano, Texas. He has practiced in 17 different states and offers a variety of project types including residential, commercial, and multi-family. Examples of his work are available online at his flickr account.


Andy Loftis, a construction manager at SB Engineers Constructors, Ltd, in Cypress, Texas, is managing the construction of the Plains All-American Pipeline, Pier 400 project at the Port of Los Angeles. It's the first crude oil offloading facility built on the west coast since the early 80s. He's living in Huntington Beach during the project.

Bill Velasco II  '78 BED is the chairman of the board of directors of Dallas Area Rapid Transit. He's the owner of Velasco Tax and Insurance and the first Aggie to head the DART board. DART operates in 13 metroplex cities with rail, bus, paratransit, high-occupancy vehicle lanes and rideshare services.


Cheryl Gajeske '79 BED, principal at PGAL, a pioneer in sustainable design and a practitioner of building information management, is leading the design team working on the new student services building and the renovation of the Mary Moody Northen Student Center at Texas A&M University at Galveston. Construction on the student services building is scheduled to begin in 2011.


Jeffrey Fetzer ’80 BED is a senior associate for Ford, Powell Carson Architects and Planners in San Antonio. He is the project manager for the restoration of the Governor’s Mansion and the historic buildings at Pearl Brewery. He recently received the San Antonio Design Award for restoration of the Pearl Stable, which was originally built in 1894. Fetzer also received San Antonio’s Conservation Society Preservation Awards for the Pearl Stable and the Pearl Brewery Smokestack restorations. In 2008, he and his wife, Kristin designed and built the Flower Fort at the San Antonio Botanical Garden. This year Fetzer designed and is building the Inside/Outside Fort at the San Antonio Botanical Garden. Both of these were design competitions and are co-sponsored by AIA San Antonio.

Catherine Gauldin '80 BED won the Sharon Tietjen Memorial Award for Exceptional Merit for her drawing, "Melk Abbey," from the Colored Pencil Society of America. The piece, in a CPSA online gallery through 2011, is at

Mark Stewart '80 BED, ’82 MARCH just finished his first year with the Corps of Engineers in Albuquerque, N.M. He said that he enjoys the weather there.


Karen Cacciapaglia '81 BED is an interior designer in Lewisville. She and her husband, who is also a former student, are proud to be sending their oldest son to A&M this fall.


Cathleen Hart '82 BED started her own firm in June 2009. She holds WBE (Women’s Business Enterprise), SBE (Small Business Enterprise), and HUB (Historically Underutilized Business) certifications. Hart is currently working on space and master planning for a large corporate client in San Antonio, Texas. To learn more about what she is doing, visit her website at:

Timothy Oferrall '82 BED has been a senior project manager for design and construction for Texas Health Resources, a system of 15 hospitals in North Texas, for 20 years.

Jon Salis '82 BED gained LEED Accredited Professional Building Design and Construction status in 2008. He has enjoyed reconnecting with his environmental design education from A&M in the past few years. Salis says that external fixed and operable shading devices are his forte, reducing the heat gain and subsequent energy costs of commercial projects.


Georgina (Perez) Govin '83 BED recently moved to Nashville to manage renovation work at lodging facilities in a number of U.S. Army bases as a design manager for Actus Lend Lease.

Larry Grosse '83 MSCOMG, ’87 Ph.D is a former professor and department head in the Department of Construction Management at Colorado State University. In April, he received the Associated Schools of Construction Lifetime Achievement Award in recognition of leadership and service to construction education. The award was presented at the International Associated Schools of Construction Annual Conference in Boston.


ZatopekDavid Zatopek ‘85 BED is the president-elect of the Dallas Chapter of the American Institute of Architects. Zatopek, a vice president with Dallas-based architecture design firm Corgan Associates Inc., is also a member of the Department of Architecture’s Advisory Council

Andrew Shell '85 BED is a partner in a new firm, R1R2 Studio, in Dallas. The firm offers interior, architectural and sustainability design services


Kenneth Crawford '86 BLA, is a colonel in the U.S. Army. He recently graduated from the army's senior service college as a Fellow at the University of Texas' Institute of Advanced Technology. Recently, he serves as the III Corps G5 (Plans, Exercises, and Training) and completed 33 months as a battalion commander in the 1st Cavalry Division, 15 of which were in Baghdad. Before that, he served as a deputy brigade engineer commander from 2003-05, including 13 months in Iraq. From 2001-03 he served a year in the Pentagon and a year as executive officer to the U.S. Army Corps of Engineers.


John Hollister '87 BDCR is the director of system engineering at Zinwave, a leader in next-generation and wireless technology. He's traveling across North America, teaching designers how to enhance indoor cellular phone and public safety radio service in buildings using state-of-the-art fiber optic technology.


Alan Brock ’88 MSCOMG founded his own firm, Arch Tech Design in 2006. After working for other firms for a few decades, he wanted to focus more on design of life sciences, biotech and clean manufacturing facilities. Brock is also the 2010 President of AIA Baltimore.


Steven Spaid ’90 BED, COSC is working as an architect for SmithGroup in San Francisco. He is recently married and currently designing a billion dollar urban hospital in the city.

Robert Stokes '90 COSC is overseeing operations at Rudolph and Sletten's Los Angeles/Orange County office. Stokes, a LEED Accredited Professional, has managed projects for many of the company's notable clients, including Dry Creek Rancheria Resort, Sonoma State University, Lucasfilm Ltd., Stag's Leap Wine Cellars, Warner Bros. Studios, Agilent Technologies, Beringer Vineyards and Walt Disney Pictures and Television and Advanced Cardiovascular Systems.

Gregory Taylor '90 BED is an associate architect with VAI Architects, Inc. Taylor has passed his last test for registration in Texas. He's now an architect as well as a major in the U.S. Army Reserves, where he's been serving for 20 years. He's planning to go for a promotion to lieutenant colonel in October.


Kathryn Ladoulis Urban '91 BED, '04 Ph.D ARCH, is owner of K Design Group in Honolulu. She said demand for her historic preservation consulting services is rising, and that she enjoys working on private sector, commercial, multi-residential, government, rehabilitation and adaptive-use projects.

Mohammad Malik '91 COSC is working as a project manager in Saudi Arabia. He has recently recovered from a heart attack and left side paralysis. Malik is proud that his kids are doing very well in school, and hoping that one will go to Texas A&M. He would also love to hear from some of his former classmates.

Kenneth Luker '91 BED joined the Freelon Group in 2006 as senior project designer and was elevated to associate principal in 2007. He also serves as an adjunct professor in architecture at North Carolina State University's College of Design. See more about Luker's work with Freelon.


Jeff Blackwell '92 BDCR has been named construction manager for KAI Texas, a Dallas design and build firm. He is scheduled to begin work on terminal renovations at Dallas-Fort Worth International Airport and expansions on Dallas Area Rapid Transit, the city's light rail system. Prior to coming to KAI Texas, Blackwell worked at Austin Commercial, LP, on projects that produced many North Texas structures including Presbyterian Hospital, Texas Instruments’ Kilby Center, the Bank of America Plaza, Vista Ridge Mall, DFW Airport Terminal D and key buildings for American Airlines.


George Lovett ’94 MARCH worked for a large architectural firm for 15 years before starting his own in spring 2010. They specialize in commercial corporate interiors and small base building development and design.

Fernando Balli ’94 BED is the owner of the Balli Group, LLP, which is located in Brownsville, Texas. He and his wife, Tatiana, just had their second child a few months ago.


Nathan Brinkley '95 COSC is a senior project manager and director of estimating at Triune Associates in Dallas. His son, Nolan, is celebrating his first birthday this September.

William T. Gray '95 BED is a principal at Falcon Architects, PLLC. He became a registered architect in Texas and founded Falcon in late 2009.

Rami Daher ’95 Ph.D. ARCH, presented “The City in the Midst of Neoliberal Urban Transformations: "Families, Agencies, Actors and Urban Activists,” April 2, 2010, as part of the Islam Past & Present Workshop Series at the Abbasi program in Islamic Studies at Stanford University. Daher is an associate professor of architecture at German Jordanian University in Amman.
Daher has presented the Center for Heritage Conservation with a collection of his publications, which include “Tourism In The Middle East: Continuity, Change, And Transformation” and “The Politics and Practices of Cultural Heritage in the Middle East: Positioning the Material Past in Contemporary Societies.”


Clay Densmore ’96 BLA recently started his own general contracting business located in the Dallas metroplex, Innovative Hardscape Services.

Steven Moore '96 Ph.D ARCH, is co-director of the Center for Sustainable Development at the University of Texas. The center's mission is to lead the study and practice of sustainable development in Texas, the nation and the world through complementary programs of research, education and community outreach. He co-founded the center in 2001.

David Nienhueser ’96 BED is living in Chicago and looking forward to being married in June 2010.

Reuben Wootton '96 BED is a licensed architect in Arizona, preparing for the LEED Green Associate exam. He's self-employed, working on projects as they come.


Marshall DurrettMarshall Durrett '97 BED, '98 MSLD, '99 MSCOMG is president of Durrett Interests, LLC in Austin. He's building custom homes in greater Austin and developing residential condominiums in central Austin.

Jeff Gossmann '97 BED is a character animator with Xaviant, an independent game developing studio in Georgia, working on a next-generation Xbox console game.

Shellie Bolting Miller '97 COSC, owns a Mary Kay business and is staying at home raising her children Kylie, 7, and Garrett, 3. "I love being my own business owner," she said. "Everything I learned about scheduling, budget management and critical path method sure come in handy being a mom." She's looking forward to re-entering her career field part-time when Garrett goes to kindergarten.

Leslie Strnadel ’97 BED is writing a travel guide to Bulgaria that will be published by Other Place Publishing in late 2010. Visit the book’s site at

Gregory Miller '97 BLA is the American Society of Landscape Architects' vice-president elect for membership for 2011-2012. He is a partner in Morrow Reardon Wilkinson Miller, Ltd., Landscape Architects in Albuquerque, N.M.

Miller has taught for six years as an adjunct faculty member at the University of New Mexico in the Master of Landscape Architecture program. He currently teaches a class on comprehensive water use and management.

Gregory Adams '97 MUP is teaching a course on timely and cost-effective completion of well-built structures at H. Lavity Stoutt Community College in the British Virgin Islands. The course introduces students to pre-construction planning, site preparation, access road construction, building layout, foundations, walls, roofs, storage of materials, and maintenance. He is a project manager for Larry Adams Construction and proprietor of Onyx Ventures, an architectural firm.


Matthew Rader '98 BDCR is director of cost segregation services and "green" building tax deduction certification for SourceCorp, a business tax consulting firm. He lectures on business tax issues to chapters of the American Society of CPAs, certified financial planners, and local CPA chapters and industry associations.


Russell Leist ’99 COSC lives in the Dallas-Fort Worth metroplex with his wife of seven years and three-year-old daughter. He works as an assistant project manager for Balfour Beatty Construction there. Leist is currently working on the Omni Dallas Hotel Project, which is a convention center for the city. Specifically, he is helping to manage the exterior building envelope and the finishing of the hotel guestroom tower. Balfour Beatty is working with its joint venture partners, H.J. Russell and Pegasus Construction to complete the development.



Kerri Ranney '01 BED passed the Texas Bar exam in July '09 and was sworn in to practice law in November. She graduated from the South Texas College of Law in 2007. Ranney is an associate in the Austin office of PBK, a planning and design firm.

Marshall DurrettDavid Hocker '01 BLA received two of the 12 American Society of Landscape Architects national Honor Awards presented in 2010 for his work on the Power House in Dallas and the landscape for the Pool House in Highland Park. Hocker is the founding principal of Hocker Design Group, which focuses on design to solidify the landscape as a cohesive link to the architecture and site. Photos of his work are available at


Li Nan '02 MARCH and her husband Jin welcomed their first child, Jason Hanren Rao, into the world March 15, 2009. Li is at RTKL Associates, Inc., in Dallas.

Noureen Faizullah '02 BED is pursuing a Master of Public Administration in International Nonprofit and Public Management at New York University's Wagner Graduate School of Public Service. She plans on merging her interest and experience in the arts with her passion for public service by working with nonprofit organizations with a focus on arts and culture.

Charlie Kolarik '02 BED, '04 MARCH  is a senior equestrian architect with Populous, formerly HOK Sport Venue Event, providing master planning and design services for domestic and international equestrian, rodeo and fairgrounds clients. His focus is on permanent and temporary equestrian sporting venues, collegiate equestrian team and equine science facilities, horse parks, polo clubs and high-end private horse farms. Populus, is the official provider of architectural and overlay services for the 2012 London Olympics, including the equestrian competition venues to built at London's Greenwich Park, a UNESCO World Heritage Site.


Benjamin Fleener ’03 BED became a registered architect in the state of Texas last year. He is an associate at Kendall/Heaton in Houston.

Kyle Kotzebue ’03 COSC is an estimator for Curtis Kelly, Inc. in Houston. He and his wife, Abbott, who is also a former student, live in Katy with their two kids.

Sterling Smith '03 BED is a project manager at Raymond Harris Associates Architects in Dallas. Sterling has passed 4 of the 7 architect registration examinations and hopes to be registered by July 2010.


Andrew Blouet '04 MSLD, a land acquirer for the city of San Antonio, bought 100 acres in 2009 for the city's Leon Creek Greenway project, a series of soft surface and natural hike and bike trails. Since graduating, Blount has become a LEED AP and, in 2010, is studying to become a certified commercial investment member, which is a recognized expert in the disciplines of commercial and investment real estate. He's also studying for the American Institute of Certified Planners exam. He attended the Urban Land Institute's 2009 fall meeting in San Francisco.

Megan Holder '04 LAND is working at HOK's planning group in Atlanta, blogging at She wrote that she's been one of the few HOK staffers involved throughout the entire length of the King Abdullah University of Science and Technology project, an international, graduate-level, research university dedicated to inspiring a new age of scientific achievement in Saudi Arabia that will benefit the region as well as the world.


Charles Schneider '05 BED '08 MARCH became a registered architect in Texas March 23, 2010. He is an architect with Overland Partners Architects in San Antonio.

Alene Reich '05 MARCH has been appointed as executive director of the Freedom's Way National Heritage Area, which includes communities in Massachusetts and New Hampshire that share unique historical, natural, and cultural resources.


Janette Kuhnel ’06 BLA is a landscape architect IT for NES. Inc. in Colorado Springs, Colo. She says that she and her husband, Kevan, who is also a former student, love living there because there is so much to do outdoors nearby. Kuhnel is currently taking the landscape architecture registration exams, and has passed three sections so far.

Yan Long '06 MLA has been promoted to associate at the Houston office of TBG Partners, a landscape architecture and planning firm. A member of the firm’s Houston office for the past three years, Long, LEED-AP, is responsible for the creation of schematic design studies, design development concepts, construction document drawings and graphic renderings for multiple project types. Her current projects include the Over Yonder Cay, a 74-acre private residential/golf island being developed in Exuma, Bahamas, and Elk Valley Casino Resort, located along northern California’s rugged coastline and nestled in the redwoods in Crescent City, Calif.

Elizabeth Carroll '06 BLA gave birth to a boy, Jude, and is a stay-at-home mom.


Ty Austin '07 BED, an architect at Cannon Design's Baltimore office, worked on the Ordos Music Hall project, a complex for the new city of Ordos, Inner Mongolia, China. Austin said the project won the Autodesk BIM Excellence Award. To see the design, visit


David Guiness '08 MSLD is a development manager/partner at Z Partners LLC. He's working on financing and developing a mixed-use, transit-oriented development project in the city of South Salt Lake, Utah.

Steven Mitchell ’08 BED, ’10 MARCH is an intern at HKS, Inc. in Dallas. He and his wife Rita are adjusting to married and working life in the tough economy.

Daniel Trafford '08 BED is an intern architect at HKS Inc. "I've been working on various projects in the sports department at HKS, most prominently a new football stadium for the University of North Texas and a renovation to the existing football stadium at Texas Christian University," said Trafford. "Both projects have been worked on from the first designs to the final documents, mostly in Revit. Lots of fun but also lots of responsibility."


Bo Yang '09 MLA, Ph.D. URS, is an assistant professor in the Department of Landscape Architecture and Environmental Planning at Utah State University in Logan, Utah. "I really enjoyed my five years of study at College Station, and hope to come back to visit my professors and people who helped me," he said.

Justin Nowak '09 COSC is a host at Tiny Boxwood's restaurant in Houston. "I'm looking to do something with my degree as soon as something becomes available," he said.

Sloan SpringerSloan Springer '09 BED is a second-year Master of Architecture student at Syracuse University. "My primary focus is urban design, emphasizing the integration of public and private programs to create more dynamic spaces," he wrote on his blog,


Jennifer Branham '10 BED is interning at Jacobs Engineering Group Inc. for the summer and will be attending the University of Houston in fall 2010 to pursue Master of Architecture degree.

- Updated: June 18, 2010 -

- the end -


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