Principals

Niels Valentiner, AIA

Principal

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Niels Valentiner is the Founder and "V" of VCBO Architecture. His guidance has developed VCBO into the dynamic firm it is today, recognized for its regional, national, and international impact. Niels has a history of designing projects for corporate office complexes, civic and state institutional buildings, universities, sports and arena facilities, medical facilities, and significant religious buildings in the United States and abroad in Central America, Europe, and Asia.

Niels' corporate social responsibility extends to the co-founding of CHOICE Humanitarian, as chairman and board member, providing village development leadership in rural areas of Guatemala, Bolivia, Mexico, Nepal, and Kenya.

Brent Tippets, AIA

Principal

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Brent is a seasoned architect whose designs have shaped the Intermountain West since 1984. He is a recognized thought leader in civic and judicial facility design and notable projects include the State of Utah Fourth District Courthouse, the Provo Community Recreation Center, and the Ken Garff Performance Zone at Rice Eccles Stadium. Brent’s dynamic personality and thoughtful design approach enable him to guide complex projects to elegant solutions.

Jeanne Jackson, FAIA, LEED AP

Principal

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The first woman in Utah to be elevated to Fellowship in the AIA, Jeanne has been a pioneer in innovative education design since 1990. She is behind a host of award-winning facilities, garnering local, regional, and national recognition, including Farmington High School, a finalist for the prestigious James D. MacConnell Award. She is highly passionate about creating spaces that offer a stimulating and exciting learning environment.

Derek Payne, AIA, LEED AP

Principal

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Derek has planned, programmed, and designed many of Utah’s most innovative and successful structures. These projects are designed to reflect the values, hopes, and aspirations of their users.

Derek’s projects have been nationally recognized for design excellence, and he is driven by creating unique, active, and rewarding people-places.

Vern Latham, AIA

Principal

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With more than 35 years of domestic and international experience in the profession, Vern enjoys working with clients to envision, design, and construct three-dimensional spaces that positively impact the built environment of our communities. His programming and design accomplishments include the beautiful Rome, Italy Temple.

He has presented at numerous local, national, and international events including a presentation on “Designing a High School for the Future."

Jeffery Pinegar, AIA 

Principal

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As a young boy, Jeff would accompany his architect father to job sites, survey property with a transit and stick, and run blueprints. Specializing in healthcare, today Jeff excels at the intricacies associated with medical projects and communication and collaboration, both with the clients he serves and the team he leads.

This practical skill in communication allows him to direct complex and challenging projects and execute them accurately, efficiently, and with the highest level of quality.

David Cox, AIA

Principal

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David has developed a strong reputation as a tenacious advocate for his clients. Specializing in K-12 educational design, he is recognized as an industry expert in merging the functional necessities of the educator with cutting-edge concepts of future-proofed educational design.

He believes efficient function and striking design aesthetics aren’t meant to be warring interests but should strike a harmonious balance.

Celestia Carson, AIA, LEED AP

Principal

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Celestia deftly orchestrates the balance between technical disciplines and aesthetics throughout the planning, design, and construction processes of each project. A vocal advocate for under-represented groups in the profession of architecture, Celestia is the founder and president of the local non-profit Women In Architecture SLC.

Many projects she has been involved with have garnered national recognition and awards for design excellence.

Nathan Leavitt, AIA 

Principal

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Nathan is passionate about civic design and believes that it can significantly increase the health and happiness of our communities. Focusing on civic architecture since 1998, his experience and attention to detail have become highly sought after by VCBO’s many repeat clients.

As a leader at VCBO, Nathan has always championed technological innovations within the firm and has been integral to numerous successful projects, recognized by both local and national design awards.

Alex Booth, AIA

Principal

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Alex is at the forefront of research and innovation in the design of future learning environments. He expertly provides design solutions that enhance flexibility for students, teachers, and administrators.

Alex sees flexible learning environments as a necessary component of education— from preschool to graduate school— and has researched, toured, and brought his expertise to schools and university buildings throughout the United States.

Melissa Wood 

Principal | Chief Operating Officer

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Melissa is a vibrant Chief Operating Officer who profoundly impacts our culture and operations. The entire staff—office runners and principals alike—looks to her for guidance and support. Starting out as Director of Operations in 2011, Melissa has since cultivated an exceptional office environment by fostering incentives in support of teamwork and best practices.

With more than 27 years of operational experience in both the A / E and legal industries, Melissa is a member of the Executive Board and an active participant in making important decisions throughout the firm.

Whitney Ward, AIA, LEED AP BD+C 

Principal

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A community outreach specialist, Whitney embraces a holistic design approach that ensures functionality, flexibility, and durability are at the forefront of each project. She is an advocate for sustainable design and provides vast expertise in the planning, design, and documentation processes for innovative sustainable buildings.

In her spare time, Whitney teaches Site Design and Sustainable Development as an Adjunct Professor with the University of Utah City and Metropolitan Planning Department.

Philip Haderlie, AIA, LEED AP BD+C 

Principal

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Phil believes in creating incredible architecture by first creating incredible collaborative relationships with owners, contractors, and engineers. A licensed architect since 2006, Phil’s standout skills include project management, navigating tasks that require code analysis, project scheduling, programming, design, quality control, contract administration, specification writing, and team management.

He is committed to sustainable design and dynamic project management services.

Pablo Gotay, AIA 

Principal

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Pablo puts special emphasis on collaboration, allowing him to integrate client input with his own ideas to create truly unique, client-specific designs. His holistic approach to developing 3-dimensional buildings includes balancing aesthetically attractive design with highly functional floor plans.

A licensed architect since 2006, his work experience spans educational facilities, office buildings, private residences, and beyond.

Julia Oderda, AIA

Principal

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Julia has been working in the profession since 2000 and has been with VCBO since 2005. While Julia specializes in educational facilities, her portfolio also includes numerous project types of varying sizes and budgets. Julia is extremely attentive in collaborations with owners, consultants, and contractors alike, which aids her ability to solve difficult design challenges.

For Julia, architecture affords the opportunity for creative design to both function and inspire.

Associate Principals

Marilee Vicencio, NCIDQ, SCCID, IIDA

Associate Principal

Breanna Bonsavage, AIA

Associate Principal

Todd Braun, AIA

Associate Principal

Michael Rail, AIA, EDAC

Associate Principal

Carlos Liñán, EDAC, LEED AP

Associate Principal

Daniel Hagerman, AIA, CSI, CCS, LEED AP

Associate Principal

Coreen Crouch, NCIDQ, SCCID, IIDA

Associate Principal

Karen Ferguson, AAIA

Associate Principal

Brian Peterson

Associate Principal

Levi Lloyd, AIA

Associate Principal

Associates

Joseph Voitehovich, Assoc. AIA

Associate

Lorianne Bisping, AIA

Associate

Mallory Platt, AIA, LEED BD+C

Associate

Corey Bowman, AIA

Associate

Kai Ton

Associate

Nancy McKendrick, NCIDQ, SCCID, LFA, WELL AP

Associate

Kirk Chadwick, AIA

Associate

Casey Sinner, AIA

Associate

Hoku Ching, AIA

Associate

Dannon Rampton, MFA, NCIDQ, SCCID, IIDA

Associate

Staff

Abouzar Movahedi Qomei

Computational Designer

Ajri McArthur

Architect III

Alexandra Watkins

Designer II

Alexzandra Shelton

Billing Specialist

Amy Sackley, NCIDQ, SCCID, IIDA

Interior Designer III

Andrew Kismarton

Accounting Clerk

Annabella Schweitz

BIM Technician

Arielle Russell

Intern Interior Designer

Astra Sun

Intern Architect

Becca Ashton

Administrative Specialist II

Becky Hanks

Administrative Specialist III

Brady Whitehead

Contract Specialist

Brandon Pullin, AIA

Architect III

Brigitta Anderson

Marketing Coordinator

Cassandra Tavolarella

Designer II

Craig Jones

IT Manager

Crystal Knutson

BIM Technician

Daniel Guthrie, AIA

Architect II

David Schmucker, MBA

Intern Architect

Diego Garrido

Designer II

Efren Rodriguez

Graphic Designer

Emma Wasson, LEED GA, Assoc. IIDA

Intern Interior Designer

Eric Peng

Designer III

Gavin Siegismund

Intern Architect

Guillermo Zelaya

Visualization Specialist I

Haiying Feng

Architect II

Hana Ghosheh

Intern Architect

Hannah Coons

Accounting Clerk

Hilary Onyon

Graphic Designer II

Isabelle Ghabash

Designer II

Jack Colemere

Intern Interior Designer

Jacque Daniel

Operations Coordinator

Janet Lin, LEED BD+C

Designer III

Jared Anzures, AIA

Architect III

Jennifer Genzen

Visualization Team II

Jeremiah Lo

Designer III

Jerome Meikle

Designer III

JoanEllen Creamer

Administrative Specialist III

Joseph Briggs, Assoc. AIA

Designer III

Joshua Kirkman, LEED AP DB+C

Architect II

Julee Attig, CPSM

Business Development and Marketing Director

Justen Christensen

Designer II

Karli Munns, Assoc. IIDA

Intern Interior Designer I

Kimberly Anderson

Travel Coordinator

Kristen Goaslind

Designer

Layne Chelgren

Intern Architect

Louis Shannon

Revit Coordinator

Madeleine Black

Designer II

Madeleine Helgren, NCIDQ, SCCID, IIDA, LEED GA

Interior Designer III

Madeleine Pew

Receptionist

Mandy Bowen

Administrative Specialist III

Mark Finlinson

Intern Architect

Max Roberts

Marketing Coordinator II

Michael Remien

Designer II

Michael Sommer

Designer III

Miranda Strange

Office Services Clerk

Morgan Watson

BIM Technician

Nicholas Shrier, Assoc. AIA

Designer III

Pamela Irvine

Administrative Specialist II

Patricia Kunkel, AIA

Architect I

Preeti Gurung

Intern Architect

Rachel Stein

Urban Planner

Rachel Scott

Designer II

Ridha Adam

Intern Architect

Sahar Assadi

Intern Architect

Samantha Morris

Marketing Assistant

Samuel Riley

Intern Architect

Sean Arnold

Designer II

Traci Jacobson, CSI, CDT

Specification Writer I

Tyler Walles

Architect II

Wesley Aldrich

Designer II

Zachery E. Wilson

Architect II

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