OWEN RICHARDS, AIA, LEED AP
Owen is recognized for his engaging collaborative approach and his expertise in creation of transformative community-focused architecture. He brings over thirty years’ experience leading multi-disciplinary teams in the design and delivery of a diverse range of award-winning projects, from performing arts venues, museums, and cultural facilities to affordable housing and pro-bono collaborations with non-profit organizations serving communities in need. He has served as president of Architects without Borders-Seattle, editorial board chair for AIA Seattle Forum, and facilities chair of On the Boards. He graduated from Rice University with majors in Architecture and Photography and an unofficial minor in theater. Prior to founding ORA in 2004, he was a principal at LMN Architects in Seattle, and he has also practiced architecture in New York, Atlanta, and Australia. He was a core team member with Mitchell/Giurgola Architects on the competition-winning design of the Australian Parliament House. In addition to theater and architecture, his passions include photography and long-distance cycling.
Ellen brings 25 years of administrative experience to ORA as Office Manager. With her talents in organization and love for numbers, she ensures the office runs smoothly and the team stays on its toes. She has a BA in Art History and background in art, formerly working as a curatorial coordinator at the Seattle Asian Art Museum. She enjoys working in a creative-minded setting and brings a cross-disciplinary voice to architectural discussions. When she is not in the office, Ellen runs her own pet care company and can often be found roaming the streets with her four-legged friends.
JUAN RODRIGUEZ LOPEZ
Juan’s approach to design focuses on form exploration, materiality, and design efficiency. His interest in architecture began at the University of Puerto Rico where he was introduced firsthand to the work of architect Henry Klumb, who designed the original campus. His interest in the collaborative nature of design led him to Cornell University where he received his Master’s degree in Architecture, with cross-disciplinary studio projects in Paris and Croatia. Juan has participated in Stanford University’s Project Based Learning Laboratory, as well as design workshops at the University of Seville. When he is not working, Juan enjoys exploring Seattle and traveling to distant places.
Virginia’s focus as a designer is on creating collaborative communal spaces that foster a sense of ownership, safety and creativity through social interaction. A native of New Orleans, Virginia migrated up the Mississippi River to attend Washington University in St Louis where she received her BS in Architecture. Her love of climate and public responsive design brought her to Seattle where she worked with DLR Group, SMR Architects, and BLRB Architects on a diverse range of educational, non-profit housing, and public projects. She joined ORA after completing her M. Architecture coursework at University of Washington in Spring 2018 and is set to complete her thesis in December 2018. Away from the office, you may find Virginia in her studio or a late-night coffee shop buried in her thesis work.