Registered Architect, Washington and Arizona
B. Arch. University of Oregon
Tonkin Architecture’s Founding Principal Architect Les Tonkin led Seattle architecture firms with specialties in affordable housing design and historic preservation for over thirty years. His leadership and experienced perspective on all aspects of architectural practice have been a significant contribution to all of our firms’ projects.
Les’s many significant projects include the rehabilitation and preservation of the historic Triangle Hotel & Bar, the Wallingford Center, and preliminary design work for the rehabilitation and adaptation of the Historic Sand Point Navy Barracks in Building 9 to provide 148 units of affordable multifamily Housing. Other significant projects included the Seattle Housing Authority’s Rainer Vista HOPE VI Redevelopment, which resulted in 1000 new homes that integrate low income and market rate housing.
It is with regret that we announce that Les passed away on Saturday, March 26, 2016 from natural causes. Tonkin Architecture misses Les’s dedication, leadership, and friendship, but continues to support his lifelong dedication to the cause of affordable housing and historic preservation by continuing to provide outstanding architectural services.
In October of 2016, Les was posthumously honored with Historic Seattle’s Legacy Award for his longstanding passion and achievements as an architect specializing in rehabilitating historic buildings throughout the state and providing affordable housing for low-income residents.
Architect, LEED® AP
Registered Architect, Washington
B. Arch. Calif. Polytechnic State Univ., San Luis Obispo
John joined the world of construction and architecture when his parents purchased a number of rental units. He spent his teenage years renovating and constructing additions. He liked the physicality of construction and the ability to create space and environment. These interests naturally lead to a career in architecture.
John’s background in facilities management and construction supervision for the Oregon State University and for the Getty Trust, in addition to his extensive architectural experience, has given him a great depth of architectural technical knowledge and a thorough understanding of government design criteria, specifications and procedures. At Tonkin Architecture John serves as an invaluable technical resource for the rest of the staff. His sunny disposition and eagerness to help is much appreciated by all. He is our chief specification writer and provides expert construction supervision for many of our projects.
John takes pride in his ability to carefully balance design quality, budget considerations and technical needs. His expertise has led to terms as a board member for numerous professional and public organizations. Positions he has held include Chair of the Pioneer Square Economic Development Board and membership in the Construction Specifications Institute and the International Conference of Building Officials.
John is an avid gardener and lawn bowler. His love of gardening extends to the care of the many house plants in our office.
AIA, Architect, LEED® AP
Registered Architect, Washington
M. Arch. with Certificate in Preservation Planning and Design, Univ. of Washington
Ph. D., Applied Physics, Calif. Inst. of Technology
B. S., Physics, Rensselaer Polytechnic Inst.
Pam’s interest in architecture extends back to early childhood when as a young girl, a favorite playtime activity was creating homes for her toys. Later, in high school, she enjoyed learning both perspective drawing and basic drafting. At the same time, she was fascinated by intellectual challenges of math and science.
As a young adult, Pam chose to pursue a career as a scientist. Although this path was successful, it felt incomplete to her, as she longed for a career that utilized both her creative and technical skills and was more directly connected to the immediate needs of people.
A career change led to an M. Arch. Degree and was quickly followed by licensure. Being an architect is rewarding to Pam; she has never regretted changing careers. She enjoys the fundamental challenge of architecture: the constant balance of aesthetics and functionality. Pam loves the affordable housing work we do at Tonkin Architecture; it allows her to make a meaningful contribution to society and provides constant technical and creative challenges. On every building she designs or contributes to, Pam strives to balance our clients’ budgetary and operational requirements with the aesthetic aspects of the building and the needs of the end users of the space. She finds her technical background helpful in problem solving; she knows how to think through a problem logically and arrive at a solution.
Pam loves living in the Pacific Northwest. She enjoys hiking with her family and friends, especially along the Pacific coast. Her other hobbies include quilting, stone sculpting, and photography.
Registered Architect, Washington
B. EnvD (Environmental Design), College of Architecture & Planning, University of Colorado, Boulder
Tim became interested in architecture at a young age in Rhode Island, where grand historic classical and shingle architecture styles flourish. However, it was clear that Vanderbilt mansions were not for everyone; Tim sought a path of learning how to bring beautiful and practical buildings to everyday people.
His fondness for the great outdoors drew him to Boulder, CO, where he completed his undergraduate degree at CU’s College of Architecture and Planning. After graduation Tim gained practical knowledge of building construction by working as a carpenter on many residential structures, including a two year restoration of a 1907 craftsman home in Portland, OR. After his time as a builder, Tim went on to work with various architects in Colorado, Oregon, Massachusetts, and Washington, where he has designed many multifamily apartments and townhomes, single family residential homes, community centers, and schools.
Tim’s experience and outgoing personality contribute to his ease in dealing with construction issues. He is very focused on providing excellent customer service for our clients. He develops a detailed understanding of a client’s requirements and challenges, which is reflected in his completed projects.
When Tim is not at work, he spends as much time as possible with his wife and two young daughters.
AIA, LEED® AP
Registered Architect, Washington
MArch: University of Washington
BA Urban Studies: Temple University
John began his career in Philadelphia working as a mason and has a thorough knowledge of the building trades. Undergraduate school at Temple University and the University of Pennsylvania was an exploration into John’s fascination with urbanism, urban neighborhoods and urban housing. His degree in Urban Studies, focused on the socio-economics of housing, evolved from work-study relationship with a leading housing planner of the time, studying urban geography, economics, housing policy. Subsequent to his early work in planning, John attended the University of Washington for a Master in Architecture. John has been a partner in Wong Koppe Architects, Koppe Wittman and Wong, and most recently Koppe Wagoner Architects. KWA’s commitment was to “projects that serve the community” and to the renovation and preservation of existing architecture. KWA’s projects were most often adaptive re-use and renovation for community centers, conference centers, libraries, archives, university work, parks projects and housing. Sustainability has been a consistent thread in his work, certified as LEED AP, a Sustainable Building Advisor, and a certified Passive House designer.
John’s pro-bono efforts have included helping to start, and co-chairing the first Habitat for Humanity program at University Presbyterian Church, as well as serving on the Seattle South King County Habitat for Humanity Construction Advisory Board. John also was a founding board member for Architects Without Borders Seattle. Tonkin Architecture’s commitment to affordable housing is a continuation of these commitments to social equity.
On the personal side, John’s passions are skiing, back packing, fly fishing. Recently John and his wife Gail have had the opportunity for international travel through the Urban Sketchers group. John has 2 college age boys.
Project Manager/BIM Lead
LEED® Green Associate
M. Arch. Univ. of Oregon
B. A., Architecture, Univ. of Washington
Alex’s interest in architecture began at a young age when her family started house hunting in the Seattle area. The variety of spatial and unit configurations within each apartment complex fascinated her. Soon, she found herself going through house tours and mentally redesigning the spaces to better fit her family’s lifestyle.
Alex’s architectural experience includes projects ranging from single-family residential to retail. Her interest in community development and love for the outdoors led her to join the Peace Corps as a community developer in rural Mongolia. Alex gained experience in community needs assessment, project collaboration with international non-governmental organizations and project evaluation. During her service, she completed over 20 projects, including a community sports complex for the town of Baruun-Urt and jumpstarting a nationwide helmet donating system for child jockeys. Her two-year experience of living in a Mongolian yurt has challenged and shaped her views on human comfort and dwelling, and continues to deeply influence her design work to this day. With her community work in the Peace Corps and Master’s degree from the University of Oregon, Alex has a strong foundation to build on as she progresses in her architectural career.
During her free time, Alex volunteers at the Humane Society. She also enjoys backpacking, snowboarding, traveling, and doing ceramics.
M. Arch. University of Waterloo
B. A. Architecture, University of Waterloo
Kathryn’s interest in architecture began while traveling coast-to-coast through Canada and parts of the USA during many family road trips growing up. They inspired an admiration for the many different landscapes of the continent, both wild and man-made.
Her bachelor’s degree in Architectural Studies from the University of Waterloo, Canada, was a co-operative education program that complimented theoretical design education with practical work experience. The program focused on the close relationship between culture and architecture, sustainable design, and building science. During her master’s degree (also from the University of Waterloo) she took the opportunity to research the complex relationships between public space, politics, security, and the city.
Kathryn has work experience in high-end residential, commercial retail, institutional and multi-use building complexes. She also had the opportunity to work on The Embassy of Ireland, a historic preservation and addition to a historic residential building in Ottawa, Ontario, Canada that won “The City of Ottawa Award for Infill and Restoration of a Heritage Property” in 2010.
In her free time, Kathryn enjoys yoga, photography, sketching, watercolor painting, and knitting as well as hiking, camping, and road trips.
B. S. Architecture, University of Cincinnati
Brandon’s interest in architectural design began when he was in high school and enrolled in the drafting and design courses that his school offered. Through these courses he began to gain an appreciation for design thinking and architectural design and chose to nurture his curiosity on the topic at the University of Cincinnati’s School of Design, Architecture, Art, and Planning.
Brandon’s education provided him the opportunity to hold several internships and generate a balance of education between the design theory learned in school and the application of it in the real world. He was also an active member of his schools American Institute of Architecture Students Chapter (AIAS) and participated in several competitions with his classmates and individually. After school, he spent some time traveling, hiking, and working outside of Boston Massachusetts until finally moving to Seattle.
Brandon enjoys sketching, brewing, backpacking, board games, music, gardening, Frisbee, and anything that involves creating.
LEED® Green Associate
B. A. Economics, Brigham Young University
M. Arch., University of Washington
Heather received her Master of Architecture degree from the University of Washington. Her interest in architecture grew out of a love of buildings, light and the unique spaces they create together. Growing up in a small town gave Heather an appreciation for strong community and a desire to be involved. Heather is excited to be at Tonkin Architecture and play a part in creating buildings that give back to our community and serve a broad range of people and places.
Although she is new to architecture, Heather earned an undergraduate degree in economics and worked at The Boeing Company on the 777 team during its digital design phase. Being involved with a team taking on the challenge of designing a new aircraft and using new digital design technology, led to a renewal of her childhood desire to study architectural design. She attended Lake Washington Institute of Technology and then continued on to complete her graduate studies at the University of Washington.
Heather enjoys living in the Seattle area with its incredible natural beauty and exploring the many parks and hiking trails nearby. She likes to spend time gardening, having fun with family and engaged in her many music projects.
B. A. Arts and Architecture, University of North Carolina at Charlotte
Calaa grew up near Washington D.C., where she became fascinated by the historic and contemporary architecture of the city, as well as the many cultures that make up the city. These experiences as a young child inspired Calaa to pursue an education in Architecture. During her time at UNC Charlotte she combined her studies of architecture with anthropology and urban design. After graduating, Calaa chose to continue her education at the University of Washington, where she continues to explore the relationship between culture, architecture, and cities. Though new to the professional field, Calaa is eager to continue to learn and get involved in the work that is shaping the city of Seattle.
When Calaa is not in the office or the classroom she is an avid adventurer who enjoys taking full advantage of all that the Pacific Northwest has to offer.
Office Manager, Architectural Intern
B. A. Studio Art, Guilford College
Christy grew up in the mountains of Western North Carolina, where she learned to be something of a jack of all trades. While she is relatively new to the world of architecture, she brings artistic skill and years of experience in marketing and and business administration to the table.
In her spare time, she enjoys playing the ukulele, printmaking, and painting.
Office Mascot, Head of Security
Advanced Degrees in Snuffles and Loyalty
Bain plays the important role of the regulation of all persons who enter the office to ensure the safety of our staff. He diligently investigates everyone’s food to ensure that it isn’t poisoned, and boosts morale every time he makes his rounds, keeping us all in good spirits.