Harris, Hensley and Nelson named principals at Pickard Chilton - promoted from associate principals

January 20, 2023 - Connecticut
Shown (from left) are: Stephen Harris, Adrienne Nelson, Michael Hensley.

New Haven, CT Pickard Chilton has promoted three associate principals to the position of principal. Stephen Harris, Michael Hensley, and Adrienne Nelson join Jon Pickard, William Chilton, and Anthony Markese as principals of the 25-year-old studio.

“We explore innovation in all we do and recognizing Stephen, Michael, and Adrienne as principals of the studio is an important step in our evolution,” said Pickard. “We celebrate the skill, vision, creativity, empathy, dedication, care, and craft they each bring to their roles as leaders of the studio. We are proud to have a studio that recognizes the contributions of our colleagues and the future they will help us secure.”

This announcement comes one year after the firm recognized the exceptional contributions of key studio members by the promotion to associate principal, senior associate, and associate, acknowledging their dedication and leadership and creating new opportunities for growth and participation in Pickard Chilton’s success.

“We share a passion for design and creating architecture that helps build community and to exceptionally serve our clients to achieve their vision. Stephen, Michael, and Adrienne bring tremendous commitment to their work, helping to lead the studio to new heights of creativity, collaboration, and innovation,” Chilton said.

Pickard Chilton is the design architect for more than 1.4 billion s/f of mixed-use and office developments across the U.S. and around the world, including work for Hines, Boston Properties, and Skanska, as well as corporate headquarters campuses and towers for leading companies including Google, ExxonMobil, Sherwin-Williams, Northwestern Mutual, The CoStar Group, and Mutual of Omaha. The studio is noted for its placemaking, extending beyond the corporate enclosure to connect and energize communities with exciting, sustainable, next-generation design. 

Markese said, “We are known for providing some of the most ground-breaking and refreshing ideas in the profession, so our evolution becomes a revolution for our industry. With this expansion in leadership, we formalize the leadership collaboration that has developed in recent years and will continue for the six of us.”

Harris, AIA, a design team leader who enthusiastically takes on complex projects that positively contribute to the public realm, is dedicated to building new areas of strength for the firm, including recent repositioning, mixed-use and multifamily projects and has long contributed to the studio’s recruiting and business development initiatives. His design leadership is evident in 600 Fifth, a repositioning of a major asset in Washington, DC, and a new 800,000 s/f tower for the Mutual of Omaha headquarters in Nebraska. He also led the firm’s design-build of the Minnesota Senate Building in St. Paul and served as a key contributor for the OLC Integrated development in Kuala Lumpur, Malaysia, 609 Main in Houston, and Northwestern Mutual Tower and Commons in Milwaukee. A frequent lecturer and industry leader, Harris has served as an adjunct professor in the undergraduate design studio of the University of Hartford and as a thesis advisor and design critic for undergraduate and graduate programs across the country. He received a bachelor of arts from Carleton College, majoring in Studio Art and Latin, where he graduated magna cum laude. He received his master of architecture from the University of Texas, focusing on sustainable design and the craft of architecture. 

Hensley, AIA, RIBA, LEED AP BD+C, WELL AP, is passionate about the intersection of architecture, people, and communities, and how architecture can be a catalyst to improve the human experience. His leadership at Pickard Chilton has been in the integration of technology in design as well as buildings, and the holistic synthesis of sustainability and wellness throughout the studio’s portfolio. Recent work includes T3 RiNo, a six-story mass timber office building in Denver, that coalesces natural light and sculpture, with a design that emphasizes occupants’ connection to nature through both form and materiality. Hensley also led the Pickard Chilton design teams for the Field Street Tower and 1144 Fifteenth St. office towers and The Atrium, a multifamily iconic tower in Dubai. A noted speaker and thought leader in the areas of sustainability, design and mass timber, Hensley is the founder of the firm’s technology committee, coordinating the studio’s LEED AP initiative and its participation in the ACE Mentor program. He holds a bachelor of architecture from the School of Architecture at the University of Texas at Austin where he graduated as a Collegiate Scholar with University Honors. He was also a National Hispanic Recognition Program Scholar and a recipient of the University of Texas Architecture Travel Scholarship.

Nelson, AIA, IIDA is a design team leader who contributes to the growth of Pickard Chilton’s design portfolio, including office, life science, timber and interior architecture that creates best-in-class experiences for occupants. She is passionate about successful placemaking, buildings designed from the inside-out with an attention to detail and understanding of the human scale and brings a unique perspective to the studio with a background in both interior design and architecture. Nelson is currently the design team leader for two significant mass timber developments in California – a 1.25 million s/f corporate campus in Menlo Park, and a 300,000-s/f office complex in Redwood City. She was a designer for 2+U, a record-setting 700,000 s/f mixed-use office tower and public plaza in downtown Seattle, that celebrates the arts and culture of its downtown neighborhood and serves as a welcoming gathering space for the public as well as a beacon for business. Adrienne is an outspoken and accomplished champion for gender equity and diversity in architecture and design, and currently serves as co-chair of the Women in Architecture Committee of AIA Connecticut. Nelson is a graduate of Iowa State University where she received a bachelor of fine arts in Interior Design and a master of architecture. As a graduate student, she received the Miller Fellowship, the graduate AIA Medal. In 2020, she was the ?rst recipient of the Outstanding Young Professional Award from the College of Design and was recognized among Engineering News Records National 20 under 40. 



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