GUND's Team Grows

GUND Partnership welcomes Steve Dadagian, AIA, LEED AP BD+C as Principal and Valerie Puchades, CPSM as Director of Marketing and celebrates the promotion of Scott Westerbeke AIA, LEED AP to Associate.

Steve spent much of his early career at GUND. After managing his own practice and serving in a senior role at a local architecture firm, Steve returns as one of four Principals of the firm. Working with the leadership team, Steve will focus on innovative learning environments that respond to changing pedagogies and ideals. With his background in independent school design, he will continue to grow GUND’s work on campuses across the US. Steve has over 25 years of experience designing buildings and spaces for Independent School and Higher Education clients. His expertise includes designing modern buildings that are contextually sensitive to historic campus settings and designing athletic, learning and gathering spaces that emphasize creative thinking, collaboration and flexibility. 

Valerie brings 20 years of marketing experience to GUND. With her background in strategic planning, she will be helping GUND identify the challenges its clients are facing today and into the future. This knowledge will help GUND’s architects continue to deliver innovative buildings that solve their clients’ most pressing challenges. She will be working with the leadership team to find opportunities to tell client success stories through traditional and digital media, starting with fundraising efforts and continuing through post-occupancy. Valerie is an active member of Society for Marketing Professional Services (SMPS) and serves as Vice President/President-elect for SMPS Boston.

Scott joined GUND in 2004 and has worked on a large variety of project types during his tenure, including studio art facilities, dining halls and student housing for higher education institutions; art galleries; and high-end residential projects. Scott brings a technical sensibility to his work, bolstered by his lengthy experience performing construction administration. He has administered projects to LEED Silver certification and led projects that went on to win design awards from the Society of College and University Planning and the Boston Society of Architects.

“With the strengthening of our team we are positioning the firm to better serve our clients’ needs, expanding areas of expertise, and focusing on high level project delivery, with the continued goal of providing great design that is synonymous with GUND Partnership,” says David Zenk, Principal at GUND.

Explore GUND Partnership’s Boston Architecture Projects

There’s a new way to explore GUND Partnership’s contribution to Boston’s rich architectural landscape. Recently launched, the AIA Guide to Boston Architecture app is the definitive local field guide with more than 1,200 sites across the metro Boston area, organized by neighborhood, style, architect, and award winners.

GUND is excited to be featured in the app. The profile, written by the app’s editorial team, gives a brief history on the firm’s work in Boston and includes work spanning four decades. 

The app is always current and location-aware so you can quickly see what’s nearby anywhere you go, including plenty of guides and tours, all available on an elegantly designed iPhone app.

David Zenk to Moderate a Panel at USITT on High Performance Performing Arts Centers

Join David Zenk at USITT on Thursday, March 15, 2018 at 2:45 PM for High Performance: Why Retrofitted and Renovated Performing Arts Centers can be Better than New. As often cited, “the most sustainable building is the one that is already built.” Join the discussion and learn how renovating, retrofitting or repurposing a performing arts venue can be a valid option to building a new facility. Learn how an existing building can prompt new design paradigms for music, dance, and theatre and how old buildings can inspire dancers, actors and musicians. This session will explore practical challenges and put forward fresh ideas for your next performing arts center design project.

The USITT 58th Annual Conference will be taking place in Fort Lauderdale, Florida From March 14 - 17, 2018. David will be joined by Curtis Kasefang and Jason Prichard of Theatre Consultant Collaborative and Carl Giegold of Threshold Acoustics. Learn more at:

Westminster School Celebrates Dedication of Three New Buildings
On October 13th, The Westminster School celebrated the dedication of three new facilities - Armstrong Dining Hall, Kelter House, a residence hall, and Brockelman Student Center that will transform student life on campus. The new dining hall and latest new residence opened in September with the beginning of the school year, while the renovation of the student center will be completed in January 2018. Each building is part of an overarching plan to enhance the student experience to the Simsbury campus.

The dedication festivities took place in the new dining hall. Equipped with a state of the art kitchen and servery, terrace and patio space for afterhours gathering and socializing, and a seating area large enough to accommodate all students and faculty in a family style setting, Armstrong Dining Hall hosted the gala, guests enjoyed dinner and special music courtesy of Westminster students.

Dan Rutledge, GUND Partnership’s Project Manager, spoke about Armstrong Hall’s impact on the Westminster campus. “The campus dining was relocated from Cushing Hall, which traditionally is the heart of campus. Armstrong Dining Hall is sited such that Cushing lies between it and Armour Hall, Westminster’s main Academic Center. In this way, in its new role as the student center Cushing has become the connector between these two poles and continues to be cast as an important center of campus activity.”

Perhaps the key design feature of Armstrong Hall is simply its ability to allow all of Westminster’s students to gather and share family style meals in one place. “The Westminster community has always been very strong,” Rutledge continued. “But the new dining hall has given more room for the students and faculty to come together.” The entire class can comfortably assemble, which opens up a multitude of new opportunities for the school and the Westminster community.
Dan Rutledge, AIA, LEED AP BD+C and Michael Roper, AIA, were key figures in the Westminster Dining project. Contact Dan or Michael for more information.
Columbus Metropolitan Library Hosts Library Journal Design Institute
Openness, transparency, natural light, and the connection to outdoor space were not only the main themes discussed at the Library Journal's panel at Columbus Metropolitan Library, but provided the backdrop to the day's events. Christine Verbitzki, AIA, LEED AP BD+C, Principal of GUND Partnership participated in a detailed forum on modern library design and renovating older buildings, bringing them into the present.

Read more about the panel here.
Christine Verbitzki, AIA, LEED AP BD+C spoke at the LJ Design Institute Panel and David Zenk, AIA, LEED AP BD+C led the Columbus Metropolitan Library renovation project. Contact Christine or David for more info.
Gearan Center Featured in College Planning and Management
The Gearan Center for the Performing Arts at Hobart and William Smith Colleges was recently featured in an article on the College Planning and Management website. Staff members and key figures at HWS opened up on the building's mission, and the impact the Center has had on the Performing Arts departments.
Marissa Desmond, AIA, contributed to the Hobart and William Smith Performing Arts project. Contact Marissa for more info.
Duke Hall James Madison University Wins BSA Citation Award
Duke Hall at James Madison University, completed in 2014 by GUND Partnership in collaboration with Clark Nexsen, is one of six projects honored by the Boston Society of Architects with a Citation in the Higher Education category of Education Facilities Design. The awards were announced at the BSA’s annual gala in Boston on February 16. Duke Hall was the complete transformation of a former performing and visual arts center built in the 1960s into a 21st Century facility for studio arts, art history and design. The building is in the midst of the historic Bluestone Section at the University’s Harrisonburg, VA campus. Since its opening, it has become one of the favorite spots on campus for exhibitions, receptions and informal gatherings.
GUND Partnership's Graham Gund, FAIA, LEED AP, Dan Rutledge, AIA, LEED AP, BD+C and Yoo Jin Chung, AIA, LEED AP were key leaders in the JMU project. Contact Graham, Dan or Yoo Jin for more information.
HWS Gearan Center Achieves LEED Gold Certification
Gearan Center, Hobart and William Smith Colleges’ new performing arts center, has achieved LEED Gold certification. The 65,000 SF, $25 million (construction cost) project, designed by GUND and opened last year, began pursuing LEED Silver, but with the leadership of the building’s namesake Mark Gearan, HWS’s president, and execution by GUND Partnership, the project was able to achieve the higher designation.

The site had a tremendous positive effect in the LEED scoring process. Formerly a parking lot, the site was fitted with bioswales that filter runoff water. Among the other green features of the building: Use of recycled and certified wood; extensive use of LED lighting; the bringing of natural light into all interior spaces; a small green roof; and a consciously constrained building footprint and building volume, which, respectively, limited the building’s impact on the site and reduced the total building materials necessary.
The LEED Scorecard above shows the building’s performance in key categories.
Marissa Desmond, AIA, contributed to the Hobart and William Smith Performing Arts project. Contact Marissa for more info.
Columbus Library Honored with Downtown Columbus Award
The newly reimagined Main Library of the Columbus Metropolitan Library, by GUND Partnership in collaboration with Schooley Caldwell Associates and MKSK Studios landscape architects, was honored at the end of 2016 with the Harrison W. Smith Award, bestowed by the Columbus Downtown Commission in honor of projects that have contributed substantial and positive impact on downtown Columbus. The award citation acknowledges how the library’s two new entrances add vibrancy to the urban fabric of Columbus.
To the west, a formal entry (upper photograph) to the landmark Carnegie building links to Columbus’s business district; to the east, a more informal facade (lower photograph) connects directly to Topiary Park, creating a “Library in a Park.” The late Harrison W. Smith was the chairman of the Columbus Downtown Commission, and this is the sixth annual award.

David Zenk, AIA, LEED AP BD+C and Christine Verbitzki, AIA, LEED AP BD+C led GUND's team for the Columbus Metropolitan Library. Contact David or Christine for more information.

Yoo Jin Chung Promoted at GUND Partnership
GUND Partnership is celebrating our next generation of leaders in the firm with the promotion of Yoo Jin Chung to Associate.

Yoo Jin joined GUND Partnership in 2005 and has specialized in visual and performing arts facilities and libraries for higher education clients, with a special emphasis on master planning and programming. She has worked on all of the firm’s college and university arts projects since joining the firm. Her most recent projects include Duke Hall for Art, Design and Art History at James Madison University in Harrisonburg, VA and an Arts and Media Study for Wellesley College in Wellesley, MA. Most recently she has been working on the new library for Kenyon College in Gambier, OH. She brings significant expertise in the technical planning issues relevant to campus facilities, and implements rigorous planning methodologies, programming, and benchmarking tools. She received a Bachelor of Arts, Design of the Environment and a Master of Architecture from the University of Pennsylvania.