Adan Aspericueta

Job Captain

Adan Aspericueta

Job Captain

A proud Bay Area native, Adan was born and raised in San Jose. The time he spent growing up watching his father—a longtime construction worker—build and maintain their family home inspired Adan to pursue a career that involved shaping the built environment.

Adan graduated from the University of San Francisco, earning a Bachelor of Arts in Architecture & Community Design with minors in Architectural Engineering & Latin American Studies.

During his education, he participated in local design that emphasized interacting with impoverished communities.  Later on, he spent a summer interning with Habitat for Humanity where he was able to transition from pen and paper to a hammer and nails; continuing his pursuit of impacting communities for the better.

His prior professional experience includes a range of multi-family residential, mixed-use development, affordable housing, and airport tenant improvement projects.

Outside the office, Adan’s hobbies include shooting black-and-white photography on his 35 mm camera, traveling, and playing basketball.

Alex Croft

Designer

Alex Croft

Designer

A native of the Bay Area, Alex is interested in both the region’s rich history and its future as San Francisco continues to grow and evolve. She brings to WDA a collaborative attitude and an eagerness to learn from more experienced design professionals.

Previously, she worked at the Berkeley Art Museum and Pacific Film Archive, where she developed her familiarity with the world of contemporary and modern art. She gravitated to architecture because she’s most fulfilled by work with potential for cultural impact and endurance beyond her immediate involvement.

As a designer, Alex is passionate about projects that exhibit restraint, subtlety, and attentiveness to small details and materiality.

Alex recently graduated with a Bachelor of Arts in Architecture from UC Berkeley, where she also minored in Art History. She studied abroad in Florence, Italy, taking classes taught on-site in art and architectural history at the Florence University of the Arts. The historic sites she’s studied in her travels have both enhanced her design education and inspired her own projects. In her spare time, Alex enjoys reading, spin classes, visiting San Francisco’s museums, and spending time with friends

Alli Foronda

Designer

Alli Foronda

Designer

Born and raised in San Francisco, Alli received her Bachelor of Arts in Sociology and a minor in Urban and Regional Studies from the University of California Los Angeles and her Master of Architecture from California College of the Arts. She was awarded a Jury prize and the AIA Community Alliance Student Award for her thesis, “The Remittance City: Reallocating Resources in a Living Cemetery.” She has also studied abroad in Japan, Venice, and Berlin where she continued her research blurring the lines between the spaces for the living and the dead.

Alli’s interest in architecture is tied to its multi-disciplinary nature. It’s not just about the built environment for Alli, but the cultural, economic, environmental, political, social, and technological factors that influence it.

Studying how these factors could leverage the examination of space and the role of buildings has been essential to Alli. She is also concerned with how we interact with each other as human beings and sees architecture as a vehicle for allowing new perspectives and enabling relationships to form with one another. She believes that creating relationships are a key building block in achieving inclusive, accessible, and resilient design.

Here at WDA Alli works as a Designer with the Residential and Retail practices. In her past, she has worked in both the public and private sector and has experience in commercial and tenant improvements.

Outside of the office Alli likes to spend her time cooking, gardening, finding new wines, and dancing to disco, hip hop, and techno with her pets. More recently, she has become an avid day-tripper on Cities Skylines if she’s not at a local flower market shopping for her next floral arrangement.

Anastasia Bespalova

Project Manager

Anastasia Bespalova

Project Manager

In her work, Anastasia strives for clean simplicity and a strong connection to the project’s site. Whether coordinating layers of project requirements or resolving small details, she aspires to deliver the highest quality in everything she does.

Anastasia began her journey in architecture in Moscow, Russia, where she received her bachelor’s degree.

She worked on a variety of project types, including schools and office buildings, in Philadelphia and San Francisco before she discovered her passion for custom residential architecture.

For a decade, she worked at Dumican Mosey Architects and Mark English Architects, honing her experience in designing high-end single-family residences and navigating the projects through San Francisco Planning and Building Departments.

Anastasia spends her time outside the office enjoying the outdoors with her husband and son, practicing yoga and capoeira, and creating whimsical felted wool sculptures.

Andres Johnson

Project Manager

Andres Johnson

Project Manager

AIA

Andres Johnson started his architectural career in Valparaiso, Chile, working on multi-family residential projects in the coastal resort of Vina del Mar. To build on this initial professional experience, he left Chile to pursue a Master of Architecture at Tulane University.

Andres spent eight years in New Orleans as part of the design community helping the city rebuild from the devastation following Hurricane Katrina. While there, he developed an expertise in commercial architecture, designing several administrative buildings.

As part of this experience he discovered his passion for creating welcoming workplace environments in both in new construction and adaptive reuse projects.

After frequent travels to the West Coast, Andres relocated to Seattle to apply his skills to large-scale corporate campuses. He managed several projects and earned a Washington architectural license before moving to San Francisco to join WDA. As a WDA Project Manager, Andres is excited to contribute his design ideas and commercial expertise to our growing firm.

When not at work, Andres seeks to satisfy his curiosity by exploring new realms—including visual art, music, and travel.

Ankit Solanki

Job Captain

Ankit Solanki

Job Captain

Ankit’s interest in architecture began early, as he was fascinated by the drawings at his father’s boutique residential firm in India. After moving to United States in 1999, he settled with his family in San Jose, and later earned a Bachelor of Interior Architecture & Design Degree from Academy of Arts University in San Francisco.

Ankit started his career in interior design at Artistic Design for Living with Tineke Triggs, focusing on kitchen and bathroom remodel projects.

In 2015 Ankit joined David Armour Architecture and initiated his training to pursue his architect licensure. During his time with DAA, he finessed his architectural drafting and learned the project design process, from preliminary design to project execution, by engaging in various residential projects in the Bay Area.

Outside of architecture, Ankit loves to explore the region’s restaurants, trails, and wineries with his wife and family. He also participates in various recreational sports leagues in Bay Area including cricket, football and softball.

Brenna Daugherty

Marketing & Business Development Coordinator

Brenna Daugherty

Marketing & Business Development Coordinator

Brenna brings an artistic and administrative background to her position as the Marketing & Business Development Coordinator at WDA.

With a Bachelor of Arts degree in Art Practice from UC Berkeley, she draws on her creativity for marketing and business development initiatives – from creating and executing social media campaigns and helping plan events, to assisting with business development research and deliverables.

Prior years as an administrative professional at WDA made for a strong knowledge base at the firm and helped to cultivate an interest in architecture. She loves modern design and seeing how the WDA team applies it to the built environment.

Brenna spends much of her free time as a freelance illustrator and surface designer – chances are she can be found drawing or painting, perusing an estate sale for artistic inspiration, or walking her dog, Apollo.

Chris Stokes

Project Manager

Chris Stokes

Project Manager

Born and raised in Philadelphia, Chris hails from a family full of contractors and builders. Growing up in this environment lead him to the path of architecture. With a Bachelor of Architecture from Temple University in Philadelphia, Chris studied abroad in Rome which inspired his love for travel and exploring new places.

After graduation, Chris started his career in Philadelphia building houses and working on large scale healthcare projects. Twenty plus years ago he moved to San Francisco to pursue a more design-oriented career.

Chris has worked on a wide variety of project types from offices, hospitals, retails shops, police facilities,  bars and restaurants, a Las Vegas night club, a surf shop, and many residential projects.

One of his stops along the way included the award-winning firm Holt Hinshaw Architects where he earned the title of Associate. Chris also founded and operated his own design firm primarily focusing on hospitality projects in and around the San Francisco Bay Area, where he took each project from conception to development and construction.

Here at WDA, Chris is a Project Manager in the Retail Practice. He enjoys working on retail and hospitality projects because of its public facing nature.

In his free time, Chris is a resident artist at Luna Rienne Gallery where he has shown his work for the past five years. He donates his art to Hospitality Houses for their annual auction which benefits the organization’s community arts program and services for San Francisco’s Tenderloin homeless community. Outside of work, Chris also enjoys design, science, nature, museums, and walks throughout the city.

David K. Plotkin

Principal - Commercial

David K. Plotkin

Principal - Commercial

AIA, LEED AP, NCARB

David brings to WDA his expertise in sustainable, forward-thinking architecture. As a leader in our commercial practice area, David adeptly formulates responsible modern design solutions. He thrives on negotiating challenges arising from codes, budgets, or environments, and prefers to practice conservation by blending old and new in existing buildings.

Most recently, David founded and operated his own Tucson, Arizona firm, where he concentrated on envisioning and implementing commercial and residential projects built with environmentally responsible practices.

David has also designed and managed projects for firms in New York, Nashville, Chicago, and Los Angeles, including Frank O. Gehry & Associates and Morphosis Architects.

A California and Arizona Registered Architect and a LEED Accredited Professional, David has been practicing and researching sustainable architecture since earning his Bachelor of Architecture at the University of Cincinnati. He has previously served as a Board Member for the U. S. Green Building Council, Southern Arizona Branch. His passion for sustainable design comes from a sense of personal responsibility which he believes should be inherent in contemporary architecture.  David’s family shares his enthusiasm for the environment, and together they enjoy exploring the Bay Area’s inspiring natural landscapes.

Dillon Parker

Senior Project Architect, Associate

Dillon Parker

Senior Project Architect, Associate

AIA

In his over 17 years of professional experience, Dillon’s keenest interests have been the thoughtful development of design detailing and the intense collaborative coordination of building systems with engineers, general contractors, and other associated design professionals. He’s been party to all phases of design and construction in a variety of sectors, including Commercial TI, Resort Hospitality, Multi-Family Residential, and Skilled Nursing Facilities.

Prior to joining WDA, Dillon managed, designed, and detailed a variety of projects for Bull Stockwell Allen, including snow country projects in Vermont, Colorado and California, hotel projects on the California coast and central valley, and health care projects in Massachusetts, Georgia, Virginia, South Dakota and Wisconsin. Earlier in his career he designed, detailed, and observed construction of projects while at ADD Inc.

, participating in the delivery of numerous Bay Area spaces such as the Ferry Plaza Wine Merchant in the SF Ferry Terminal Building, BRE Corporate offices in downtown San Francisco, and U.C. Berkeley Extension’s SOMA facility. Across this range of work, Dillon has always focused on realizing a design aesthetic through detailing and execution, meeting clients’ needs, and developing strong, collaborative relationships within the construction industry.

A California licensed Architect since 2009, Dillon received his Master of Architecture from University of Wisconsin, Milwaukee, and his Bachelor of Arts from Wesleyan University, participating as an undergraduate in Columbia University’s “Shape of Two Cities – New York / Paris” Architecture program. Outside of the office Dillon is an avid road cyclist who typically logs five to eight thousand miles per year on his bike, and has completed dozens of century touring rides.

Dustin Foster

Project Manager

Dustin Foster

Project Manager

Dustin has cultivated a passion for the built environment through a variety of experiences. A summer as a teenager on a job site provided his introduction to construction. Later, an extended visit exploring the architecture of Spain and Italy became the springboard for his academic pursuits.

Dustin received his BA in Architecture with a focus in structural engineering and urban studies from UC Berkeley. While pursuing his Master of Architecture degree from the University of Oregon, Dustin focused on sustainable design and urban planning and spent the summer between semesters developing valuable building experience by working in construction.

A native Californian, Dustin returned home to the Bay Area and spent several years working for Backen Gillam Kroeger Architects on luxury estates.

While at BGK he applied his passion for craft and detail while he developed a strong sense of leadership driven by the desire to capitalize on the diverse experiences each team member brings in the design and building process.

Dustin believes in sharing his professional experience to better his community and inspire the next generation. In the fall of 2017 he completed a 10-week residency with Youth in Arts San Rafael’s Architects in Schools program. Dustin taught 4th graders design thinking as a method to approach the challenges of climate change, and demonstrated how to organize and present the culminating project—the students’ proposed redesign of their campus in response to sea level rise.

When he’s not practicing architecture or teaching, Dustin spends time with friends and family at the beach, mountains or skatepark in pursuit of adventure and laughter.

Emily Gallivan

Designer

Emily Gallivan

Designer

Emily Gallivan found her way to architecture via several design fields. With a background in exhibit design, theatrical set and lighting design, and photography, architecture has enabled her to use her range of experiences and interests within one craft. From her experience in theater design, she brings a passion for collaborative design practice, and a belief in the importance of teams to hone and stress-test each other’s ideas. Emily has also found architecture to be a fantastic combination of design, engineering, and human psychology. It is a field that presents ever-increasing challenges, and requires the ability to work at a wide range of scales and environments.

After growing up in Maryland just outside D.C., Emily attended Wesleyan University, where she double majored in Theater, with a focus on set and lighting design, and Neuroscience & Behavior. Returning to the D.C. area after college, she worked first in local theaters and later for a museum design and fabrication firm, which cemented her interest in spatial design.

In 2015 Emily moved to the Bay Area, where she has family roots, to get her Master of Architecture at University of California, Berkeley. While pursuing her Masters, Emily received the John K. Branner Traveling Fellowship, and spent three months traveling across Europe and Asia researching architectural responses to death and mourning. She has also worked as an exhibition tour guide at the National Building Museum and the Berkeley Art Museum and Pacific Film Archive.

In the Bay Area, Emily previously worked at The Shalleck Collaborative and Marcy Wong Donn Logan Architects. Here at WDA, Emily works as a Designer with the Residential and Retail practices. Emily joined WDA because of the office’s collaborative approach, its focus on physical and cultural context, and the combination of retail, residential and commercial design within one firm.

Outside of the office, Emily likes to cycle, hike in the woods, take photographs, and have cooking adventures. She can often be found working on personal design projects with her husband in their workshop space, or cuddling their demanding cat, Dutch.

Eunice Lin

Project Manager

Eunice Lin

Project Manager

RA, LEED AP

Eunice brings a strong interest in creating meaningful architecture strongly tied to its site. This perspective stems from her love of learning about the San Francisco Bay Area’s history and cultures and her deep appreciation of its beauty. She is a Bay Area native and has spent most of her life here. Her design interests are supported by her careful attention to detail and coordination, and being a natural born problem solver.

She has a long background in residential projects and has worked on a variety of projects throughout the SF bay area, from Carmel to San Francisco to the Napa/Sonoma Wine country regions.

 Prior to joining WDA, she worked at BAR Architects and Backen Gillam Kroeger Architects honing her skills on large estate and winery projects.

 

Eunice received her BA degree in Architecture from University of California, Berkeley, and a Masters in Architecture from Massachusetts Institute of Technology.  While at MIT, she pursued her interests in studying the connections between architecture, history and culture with summer studies at the L’Ecole des Beaux Arts program at Fontainebleau, and classes focused on travel to case studies in Italy, Egypt, and Costa Rica. She is a licensed architect in the state of California, and a LEED-accredited professional.

Outside of the office, Eunice enjoys hiking, skiing, photography, and travel. Together with her husband she can also be found exploring the area’s amazing restaurant scene and the Bay Area’s many trails with their adorable dog.

Garrett Wehan

Job Captain

Garrett Wehan

Job Captain

Garrett’s childhood love of Legos drew him to explore the possibilities of the world of architecture and design from an early age. A native of Southern California, he graduated from Cal Poly Pomona in 2012 with a Bachelor of Architecture. After college, Garrett refined his professional skills at McClean Design in Orange County, where he worked on high-end custom modern residences.

At WDA, Garrett’s focus includes harmonizing the relationship between indoor and outside and designing architectural solutions that highlight the amazing California climate. He loves the world of residential architecture and the satisfaction that can be gained by working collaboratively with clients to help them build their dream homes.

Outside the office, Garrett’s life tends to revolve around rooting for his favorite sports teams. If he isn’t watching one of them, he’s most likely out on the golf course or the soccer field trying to hone those skills. After living in southern California his whole life, he is looking forward to exploring all that the San Francisco Bay Area has to offer.

Giorgia Sala White

Project Manager

Giorgia Sala White

Project Manager

Born and raised in Milan, Italy, Giorgia hails from a very creative family full of architects, engineers, and graphic designers. Given these artistic origins her study of architecture was a natural path.

After completing her formal studies, Giorgia landed an internship with a residential architecture studio in Berkeley, CA. What was meant to be a brief summer experience turned into a life-changing one as she fell in love with the lightness of wood-framed construction typical of North American residential projects and the possibilities this form offered over the brick-and-concrete construction standard in Europe.

 Shortly after her internship, she relocated permanently to the Bay Area.

Professionally, Giorgia has worked on multiple types of projects—from institutional to commercial to offices to retail spaces. This broad exposure and in-depth experience further solidified Giorgia’s passion for residential projects. For the past 12 years, she has worked mostly on single family residential buildings. She enjoys designing with a special attention to details and fulfilling her clients’ wishes with exceptional projects.

Giorgia loves spending her free time with her husband and kids or with friends, preferably outdoors. She’s also an avid designer of jewelry she creates from Japanese glass seed beads.

Glorimar Irizarry Delgado

Job Captain

Glorimar Irizarry Delgado

Job Captain

For Glorimar Irizarry Delgado, architecture is both an art and a science; it is the balanced integration of sensible imagery with a systematic and structured understanding of the physical and natural world.

Born and raised in Puerto Rico, Glorimar received a Bachelor of Architecture from the Pontifical Catholic University of Puerto Rico. During her architectural studies, coursework abroad in Chile and Spain furthered her delight in the richness of learning from different cultures. Before she was called to a career in architecture, Glorimar also earned a bachelor’s degree in biology with studies in film. She now approaches her design work with an eye towards ways of integrating biology and architecture.

As a student fascinated by the possibilities of biomimicry in design, she worked on several bio-motivated design proposals, one of which was published in an undergrad journal by the University of Puerto Rico (JOUST) and its part of the Materiability Research Network database.

Glorimar is also passionate about the possibilities for outdoor cinema as a means of building community in cities. In Puerto Rico, she founded and ran a non-profit, Cine Urbano, which promoted the use of urban public space in while educating about the art of film.

Glorimar was drawn to WDA’s aesthetic of innovative, yet down to earth, design, and its culture of participating in its surrounding community and fostering a team-oriented work environment. An eager learner new to the city of San Francisco, she looks forward to discovering everything about the Bay Area. A student of the world, Glorimar enjoys traveling and exploring other cultures. Her hobbies include: dancing, yoga, painting and going to museums.

Jim Westover

Principal - Residential, Owner

Jim Westover

Principal - Residential, Owner

AIA, LEED AP

As Principal, Jim provides direct oversight of all of WDA’s residential projects, preparing a strategy to achieve each of our client’s unique goals, and personally manages select high-end residential projects. He meets weekly with the firm’s project managers to review milestones, discuss technical issues and provide quality control for completed drawings.

With a Bachelor of Architecture from the University of California at Berkeley, Jim is a California state licensed architect, a LEED accredited professional, and has over 30 years of experience in architecture and interiors.

Prior to joining WDA, Jim had his own practice focusing on residential projects, preceded by 17 years as an associate and senior project manager at FME Architecture + Design in San Francisco, where he managed a variety of projects including corporate campuses, churches, schools, gymnasiums and private residences. For seven years, he served as the pro bono Project Architect for the renovation of San Francisco’s Lincoln Park Steps.

Jonathan Tsurui

Associate Principal - Retail, Owner

Jonathan Tsurui

Associate Principal - Retail, Owner

Jonathan works closely with William Duff to manage the retail practice. Jonathan’s project experience ranges from concept and original one-off designs to well-established brands, where strict standards must be followed.

Jonathan adds value to every phase of his projects through dedicated client service, and by facilitating a close collaboration process.

Jonathan completed his Bachelor of Architecture with a Minor in Sustainable Environments from California Polytechnic State University in San Luis Obispo, California. His interests include golf, foosball, and maintaining his humidor.

Karen Chang

Project Manager

Karen Chang

Project Manager

RA

A San Francisco native, Karen has over 20+ years of experience working on high-end, custom residential projects in the Bay Area. After working with millworkers at a local mill shop for nearly 3 years, she also has a deep appreciation for and unique experience in the craft of woodworking.

For Karen, participating in the creative process on a daily basis is a career blessing, and finds being part of a supportive team environment and learning something new daily to be the most rewarding.

She is especially gratified when mentoring junior staff and watching them bloom into successful designers and architects.

She is a proud graduate of San Francisco public schools and the University of California, Berkeley. And while she enjoys all sports, she counts the days until football season begins to cheer on her local team – go Niners! A nature lover and hiker, she often escapes the city, civilization and technology with the occasional outdoor excursion. If she isn’t spinning her Big Band or Jazz records from a bygone era, you might find her with a good book beneath a shady tree.

Katerina Leung

Job Captain

Katerina Leung

Job Captain

Katerina, grew up in the South Bay and moved to San Francisco for its vibrant city life. Her professional experience designing large-scale high-end commercial projects helped refine her skills involving precision and close coordination. She holds a Bachelor of Architecture from Cal Poly, San Luis Obispo.

Her year studying abroad in Copenhagen, Denmark influenced her love of Scandinavian design and its emphasis on architecture that is humanistic, refined and functional.

Time spent getting to know people—whether catching up at coffee shops or trying out new restaurants—has fueled Katerina’s desire to design and shape environments in which relationships are built. During her free time you can find her exploring the city, traveling, making music on the piano, or designing cards.

Laura Rocroi Riggs

Senior Project Manager

Laura Rocroi Riggs

Senior Project Manager

RA

With a BA in Environmental Design and Planning from the State University of New York at Buffalo, and later completing a Masters in Architecture from the University of California at Berkeley, Laura is a California state licensed architect with 40 years of professional experience in Bay Area design and architecture. Upon graduating from Berkeley, Laura embarked on a year-long fellowship to study vernacular building techniques, architecture, and urban design in Europe, and document her many discoveries resulting in an extensive photography archive.

Prior to joining WDA, Laura has worked on a great diversity of project types including resorts, restaurants, wineries, retail shops, libraries, community centers, childcare centers, hospices and many single-family residences.

Her built projects have won media attention and awards for both contemporary design and historic preservation.

Laura expresses passion for her craft through both traditional and contemporary styles and helping her clients realize their own personalized vision for their project. In addition to project management expertise, she brings detailing skills in many specialized areas including concrete countertops, steel fabrications, terne roofing and traditional face-frame cabinetry. More recently Laura has developed expertise in site development management for large residential estates.

Outside the office, Laura likes to get her hands dirty with gardening and building projects for her century-old Craftsman home. Her current hands-on project is the conversion of her garage into an ADU. She is also the mother of two terrific people.

Mark Kebasso

Designer

Mark Kebasso

Designer

Mark was born and raised in Nairobi, Kenya and relocated to the Minneapolis, MN metro area as a teenager with his family. Throughout high school and college, he worked in his family’s construction and remodeling company to carry himself through school.

Mark originally studied and graduated with a Bachelor of Science in Accounting. He worked in the field in the Minneapolis Metro Area for a few years, but soon came to realize that his true interest laid in the creative expression of architectural design.

It also dawned on him that architecture requires number crunching and critical thinking skills, both of which he had developed in accounting.

Mark took a leap of faith and left his first career to pursue his dream of becoming an architect. He enrolled as a graduate architecture student at Indiana University’s J. Irwin Miller Architecture Program, and he’s been having a great time ever since.

Upon graduating from Indiana University, Mark was drawn to WDA’s design philosophy and firm culture. Outside of work, Mark enjoys woodworking, house music production, playing basketball, hiking, traveling and community outreach.

Mary Bray Erickson

Job Captain

Mary Bray Erickson

Job Captain

AIA, NCARB

Mary Bray has had a healthy obsession for home design since Kindergarten. During childhood sleepovers, she always insisted on getting guided tours of her friends’ houses. So, when her 4th grade teacher recognized Mary Bray’s passion during an in-class art and math project and suggested she become an architect, it stuck.

After graduating with a Bachelor in Architecture and a minor in Sustainable Design from Cornell University, Mary Bray left her home state of North Carolina and moved across the country to begin her professional journey. Since arriving in California, Mary Bray has accumulated the bulk of her experience working in high-density residential design. She has also worked on custom single-family homes and retail projects. Mary Bray continues to nourish her passion for creative, sustainably-minded design solutions in the residential practice here at WDA.

On the weekends, Mary Bray can be found discovering a new coastal hike, petting strangers’ dogs, foraging supplies for her next wreath project, and picnicking with friends in one of San Francisco’s many parks.

Matthew Ahearn

Designer

Matthew Ahearn

Designer

Matthew’s interest in the built environment began at a young age, primarily through his admiration of the buildings his grandfather worked on as an engineer and builder across Peru. In grade school, Matthew excelled in mathematics, fine arts, and art history. This, as well as a desire to travel, led him to move across the country to pursue a Bachelor of Architecture at Cal Poly, San Luis Obispo. Having naively expected architecture to be a true blend of art and mathematics, instead he has found architecture to be a blend of much more than that and considers himself lucky to have fallen in love with architectural design.

In university, his thesis focused on the impact of architecture on culture.

Arguing that design should provide a stage for cultural practices without prescribing the implicit biases of the designer, Matthew carefully considers every design decision and the impact it has on inhabitants of the built environment. A Merit Scholar at Cal Poly, Matthew received multiple honors including graduating Cum Laude, Dean’s List and President’s List.

Prior to joining WDA Matthew held a variety of positions from Intern to Senior Designer in architecture firms in the United States and Peru. In the Bay Area he has worked on multiple project types, but primarily single and multi-family residential. In every project, he pays great attention to the idiosyncrasies of the project, client, and site and responds to each with innovative design solutions.

Outside of design Matthew enjoys exploring great hiking trails and museums of the Bay Area, dabbles in guitar, and is always looking for a good book or movie recommendation.

Ming Michelle Chen

Job Captain

Ming Michelle Chen

Job Captain

RA

Born in China and raised outside of New York City, Michelle moved to the sunnier coast for university. She graduated from Cal Poly, San Luis Obispo with a Bachelor of Architecture and a minor in Sustainable Environments, and found her passion for designing spaces with surprising and unexpected experiences, that make people smile.

Before WDA, Michelle worked at a smaller firm where she was exposed to the entire life cycle of architecture, from project conception to development and construction.

She worked closely with clients to translate and develop their goals and ideas, communicated and coordinated with consultants, and strategized with contractors to materialize the best possible solutions. Through working in high-end residential projects she has developed a consciousness for the smallest details to the overall design concept.

Michelle enjoys the creative process in all its forms, including photography, bookbinding, jewelry making, and bread baking. She also spends her time wandering around the city, eating pastries, practicing yoga or kickboxing.

MyHanh Duong

Office & Bookkeeping Assistant

MyHanh Duong

Office & Bookkeeping Assistant

MyHanh’s interest in architecture and passion for growth led her to WDA. Previously, she was an Admissions Manager at a non-profit for individuals with special needs. Her prior experience helped build her ability to be patient as well as to kindly collaborate with others.

As Administrative and Bookkeeping Assistant for WDA, MyHanh provides technical and logistical support and helps coordinate various activities, meetings, and conferences. Nothing is ever too small or big for her to tackle. She truly enjoys working with staff to ensure that the office is running smoothly.

Outside of her administrative work, she enjoys eating comfort food, watching documentaries and hiking. Her future plans include combining her interest in service and travel by returning to her hometown in Vietnam to work for Habitat for Humanity.

Neil Ginty

Project Architect

Neil Ginty

Project Architect

Neil completed his architectural studies at the Dublin School of Architecture and brings a strong background in residential and mixed-use sectors from his work in Chicago, the UK, and back home in Ireland.

Neil finds that his organization and communications skills have proven valuable assets in his career to-date.

His work has always been end-user focused with an attention to producing high-quality yet well-functioning spaces, particularly when design solutions need to be achieved within highly challenging constraints.

An avid Gaelic football and rugby fan, Neil reconnects with home by watching early morning matches in Ireland on the weekends. His teams’ frequent near-misses mean he has become accustomed to spending the remainders of his weekends reflecting on how those games went, and lifting his spirits by going for a run or exploring the beauty of Northern California.

Parvathy Nair

Job Captain

Parvathy Nair

Job Captain

RA

Parvathy contributes her strong visualization skills and passion for design to the team at WDA. As a Job Captain, she believes that it is her responsibility to create thoughtfully designed spaces that fit their environment while enhancing social interaction.

With a Bachelor of Architecture and minor in Architectural Engineering from Cal Poly San Luis Obispo, Parvathy is drawn to the interdisciplinary nature of architecture.

During her education, she took part in a research project that focused on applying origami forms to design structures for disaster relief. Later on, she studied for a year at the Danish Institute of Study Abroad and afterwards worked in Copenhagen. The level of craft and artful minimalism of Scandinavian design is an influential factor in her aesthetic.

Outside of architecture and design, Parvathy pursues life drawing and enjoys discovering new music at live shows and concerts in San Francisco.

Phoebe Lam

Director of Operations, Owner

Phoebe Lam

Director of Operations, Owner

AIA

A licensed architect, Phoebe’s project management skills align well with her role as Director of Operations. She excels at organization and critical thinking, and brings an objective, yet balanced point of view to problem solving. As a former project manager, she understands first-hand the rewards and challenges of architectural work, attuning her to the needs of our technical staff.   

Phoebe most enjoys the people aspect of her role. Driven by the idea that we can go further together than apart, she is passionate about helping to steer the firm towards common long-term goals.

 She continuously examines how the firm operates and iterates on how to manage and improve it. In charge of HR, staffing, financials and IT, every day is different. For her, it is all scary, exciting and rewarding, and never dull. 

Some of her achievements in this role include qualifying WDA as a Best Places to Work and 100 Fastest Growing Private Companies as ranked by the San Francisco Business Times. She managed our recent office move and orchestrated our transition to working from home during the pandemic. As a shareholder in our company, Phoebe is also proud to be a part-owner of the firm.   

Phoebe received her BA in Architecture from UC Berkeley. Previously she worked as a residential project manager with WDA, and prior – as a job captain with Field Paoli in San Francisco, managing teams on large outdoor retail centers and civic projects. When away from the office you can find her snowboarding on the slopes, indulging her inner foodie and doing her best to live sustainably. 

Richard Klaja

Job Captain

Richard Klaja

Job Captain

RA

Richard began exploring his love of houses early on through countless drawings and Lego models while growing up in San Antonio, TX. After earning his Bachelor of Science in Architecture from Texas Tech University, he spent a semester studying monumental land art throughout the Southwest desert with the Land Arts of the American West program. He then left Texas for the Bay Area to earn his Master of Architecture from UC Berkeley.

After graduating from Berkeley, he landed his first architecture job in San Francisco.

For the next 6 years he gained experience designing in the residential field while earning his architect’s license. Here at WDA he continues to hone his skills in the residential practice.

Richard enjoys designing spaces that are thoughtful, efficient, and sustainable. He is particularly interested in the layer of intimacy and fine tuning of the human scale that exists in spaces for living. For Richard, individual lifestyle or functional goals give each project a distinct personality and finding the right design solution is an exciting process.

Outside of work, you can find him running, cooking, baking, exploring the city, petting dogs that don’t belong to him, and working on a green thumb by adding plants to his life with caution.

Sarah Mergy

Associate, Director of Business Development & Marketing

Sarah Mergy

Associate, Director of Business Development & Marketing

As Director of Business Development & Marketing, Sarah Mergy is excited to bring to WDA her passion for finding solutions and connecting people with design. She believes that good design should be accessible to everyone, bring delight, and elevate our daily lives. Sarah also takes a deep interest in architectural and demographic trends that drive client decision making, and how design innovations resonate with users.

Like all WDA team members, Sarah is a creative at heart.

Her interest in design began at a young age, when at home she’d often surprise her parents with a complete re-arrangement and reorganization of a room she felt was “unbalanced.” She channeled her early passion into the study of interior design at San Francisco State University. She believes in balanced design, where form and function are equally essential.

Sarah considers herself lucky to live in San Francisco’s Miraloma Park, where she shares a home with her husband and their Boston terrier Mabel. When not at WDA, you can find her running the urban trails and observing our diverse 7 x 7 for the next nugget of inspiration.

Wendy Osaki

Marketing Manager, Associate

Wendy Osaki

Marketing Manager, Associate

Wendy brings her experience in graphic design and marketing to her role as Marketing Manager and Associate. Her work touches on everything from content creation and event planning to workplace culture. An active member of our professional community, Wendy has also held multiple volunteer positions with SMPS SF, including Programs Committee Co-Director, Market Share Leader, and more.

Wendy received her BS in Environmental Design with an emphasis in Visual Communication and Graphic Design at UC Davis. Her graphic design experience includes positions at the Pacific Sun newspaper, Maritz Travel and Solution Set.

She added marketing to her skill set in her most recent position as Marketing Manager for Hilton San Francisco Financial District. In addition to marketing, Wendy was the hotel’s community service champion and a founding member of their sustainability team.

Originally hired as an office manager at WDA, her operational experience helps her understand the industry from multiple angles and often informs her marketing decisions. Her favorite projects are adaptive reuse for their sense of story, reinvention, and inherent sustainability properties. In her free time, Wendy can be found arranging flowers, watching movies, and taking pictures.

William S. Duff, Jr.

Founder & Managing Principal

William S. Duff, Jr.

Founder & Managing Principal

William S. Duff, Jr. founded William Duff Architects in 1998 – an innovative, award-winning practice that is nationally recognized for responsive, sustainable architecture that lives well. His work is known for its elegant simplicity both in plan and detail, and for a sophisticated use of space, light, and materials.

Underlying William’s strategic vision for WDA is the belief that architecture can shape environments and improve communities. A former Eagle Scout, he believes that personal service strengthens ties to the neighborhoods and communities where he lives and works.

William has substantial experience in retail, residential, and commercial architecture, and under his leadership, WDA continues to grow and excel in each of these areas. He has designed flagship stores, retail concept designs, roll-out stores, single and multi-family homes, restaurants, and office spaces.

Other work includes cafes, wineries, art galleries, and full building renovations.

Before founding WDA, William was an Associate at Kanner Architects in Los Angeles, where he managed the firm’s retail practice. His experience extends to mixed-use, commercial, academic and laboratory buildings, urban master planning, and health-care design. William received his Bachelor of Architecture from Cornell University and his Master’s in Construction Management from Colorado State University.

In addition to NCARB and LEED certifications, William holds architecture licenses in five states (CA, CO, AZ, OR, WI). He is a member of the American Institute of Architects, the U.S. Green Building Council, and has served on the Marina Del Rey Design Control Board. He is the past President of the Board of Directors of Young Audiences of Northern California and the past President of the Board of Directors of Napa’s diRosa Center for Contemporary Art.