MARK HIRONS / Furniture Designer
As a design principal in our commercial practice, Mark believes truly great buildings are designed from within — responding first to those who use the buildings and ultimately enriching the lives of all who interact with them. He also believes good design permeates all facets of a space, from the colors and materials on a wall to the detail of a door handle and the furniture placed throughout.
Many years ago while working with an entrepreneurial client, Mark had the opportunity to create an extremely customized experience by designing functional sculptural furniture. Since then, he’s created more than 50 furniture pieces and launched two different lines, Vertex and Avant, which are sold and advertised internationally by Decca. When appropriate, Mark continues to design furniture for his clients spanning a broad portfolio including the University of Chicago Law School, Metropolitan Capital Bank, Millipore, Roche and Zurich.
LAURA PETERS / Photographer
From textile designer and wedding photographer, to trader on the Chicago Board of Trade and administration in our Chicago office, Laura’s journey weaves through decades of varied and vibrant life paths. After stepping in to help photograph local office events in her downtime, her talent was spotted quickly – she then became CannonDesign’s first ever in-house photographer.
Now Laura says she is truly “living the dream,” traveling the country doing what she loves: telling stories through photography. No two days are ever the same for her while she juggles photoshoots of our people and our projects — from large-scale hospitals and workplaces to many of the portraits you see in PRISM. “After only a year into my current position, I have seen such amazing work from our designers firsthand,” said Laura. “I also love working with a team for the first time in my career. They motivate me to be a better photographer and I feel like I’m contributing to something bigger.”
DAN GREEN / Facility Optimizer
Dan admits that maybe it was a “Brady Bunch complex,” but he has been interested in architecture ever since eighth grade. To help pay his tuition to Penn State University, he enrolled in the ROTC, which led to a 22-year career in the Air Force, including four years of active duty, and retiring at the rank of Lieutenant Colonel. During that time, Dan oversaw more than $50 million in military projects for the Air Force, Army Corps of Engineers and N.Y. Air National Guard.
Dan was hired as a quality leader in the Buffalo office in 2007. After realizing how many clients were struggling with operating and maintaining aging and inefficient infrastructure, he teamed up with Joe Cassata to launch Facility Optimization Solutions (FOS) — a service that helps clients more effectively manage their existing facilities and assets. Since its launch in 2013, FOS has become one of our firm’s core service lines, and collectively, the team has provided assessments for more than 225 million sf of space.
PAUL MOSKAL / Compliance Director
After obtaining his law degree from the University at Buffalo, Paul pursued a career in the FBI that lasted 30 years. He worked long-term undercover assignments as a marathoner, a hedge fund operator, and an organized crime lawyer allegedly using drug money to pay bribes and develop luxury hotels and golf courses. He supervised kidnapping and extortion squads, worked in the National Press Office, and tracked down spies from foreign governments. He’s traveled the world, working stints in London, Rome, Port-au-Prince and Toronto, to name a few.
Now as our firm’s director of compliance, Paul ensures everyone in the organization, regardless of job duty, understands the law and the firm’s policies and procedures, and adheres to them to further our firm’s goals. In addition to leading the CannonDesign program, Paul has partnered with nearly 30 A/E firms to help them kick-start their efforts. “I’ve never sketched a drawing, but I can help my colleagues navigate situations so they can do their jobs to the best of their ability and design buildings that contribute to the benefit of society as a whole,” said Paul. “Supporting my colleagues in this regard is a role I take great pride in.”
ERNESTO PACHEO / Design Visualizer
After studying Architecture at the University de las Americas Puebla, Ernesto moved to the U.S. and got his first job in Miami in the model shop of a small design firm that focused on coastal high-rise apartment buildings. He then moved to St. Louis and continued his education in graphic design, which ultimately led to his role as a design visualization lead at CannonDesign.
Ernesto is widely considered a “jack of all trades” in our St. Louis office, though his expertise is in 3D modeling, rendering, interactive design, 2D/3D animation and virtual reality. Since joining, he’s introduced a number of cutting-edge software programs to the design process and has created stunning animation videos of current and proposed designs. Most recently, Ernesto played a key role in our firm’s adoption of multi-user virtual reality — allowing multiple users to virtually experience a space at the same time. “Technology and advanced software allow us to push the boundaries of design, and our team in St. Louis is great at encouraging that exploration.”
BOWIE / Office Dog
Dubbed the “Happiness Ambassador,” Bowie, a goldendoodle and licensed service dog, has many roles in our Denver office. He has been coming to work with his owner, Talia Rubin, since he was only a year old. Every day, Bowie braves the car ride (not his favorite), then “Scooby Doo runs” to the office door with excitement. His personal duties include joining meetings in the conference room, sleeping with a toy in his mouth, watching the kitchen microwave during lunch, and offering a game of fetch and tug-of-war with anyone willing. Talia says she has tried to teach him Revit, but he hasn’t quite mastered it yet…
Bowie wears a bow tie every day to the office. Talia, who was tired of buying all of the bow ties, started to make them herself and now sells them on bowie-ties.com. When Bowie is not in the office, he enjoys being a therapy dog at Denver Health Medical Center.
ANDY LEWIS / Equipment Planner
In 2005, while Andy was in a user group meeting for an ambulatory surgery center, a medical equipment planner kept interrupting his design presentation, saying: “We can’t do that.” That guy drove Andy crazy, but spurred a desire to learn more about equipment planning to become a better healthcare architect. So he started to educate himself, and the rest is history.
Now, Andy leads a team of specialty medical equipment planners out of our Houston office. His day-to-day includes producing Revit models to ensure all MEP and utilities are in the most optimal place, living in a database called Attania that contains millions of items with pricing and cut sheets, and conducting user group sessions to guide clients toward better solutions. Fairly new to the firm (via our merger with FKP), Andy’s goal is to provide medical equipment services on every CannonDesign health and science project going forward.
STEVE COPENHAGEN / Laboratory Planner
With a degree in biological sciences, Steve began his career at his family’s programming and planning firm focused on technical science facilities in different environments including academic and healthcare. After 30 years at the firm, Steve was looking for the next challenge in his career and joined CannonDesign in 2005. This career change gave him the opportunity to work on larger and more complex projects across the globe. Currently, Steve acts as a subject matter expert for technical lab design and is typically the guy to step up and say “yes” when someone asks, “Has anyone ever done this?” on a project.
“I’m inspired every day by the researchers who are at the forefront of science. I get to design cutting-edge facilities to help them discover the next breakthrough,” said Steve.