M.Arch, BES, Architect AAA, Architect AIBC, SAA, MAA, OAA, NWTAA, NSAA, NLAA, FRAIC, FAIA
My role as an architect and as leader of our firm is to help others see opportunities that might seem invisible.
I champion the idea of ‘in-between thinking’: exploring the spaces and places at ground level and everywhere people meet built form, and then looking between the lines to come up with human-friendly solutions to design challenges. I’m passionate about not only building new things but transforming communities and helping people live their best lives.
I have led the firm through many years of imaginative design and creativity through built form, and I’m proud to work alongside our teams in bringing Kasian’s projects to fruition. Thanks to this diverse and collaborative group of architects and designers, Kasian is recognized as one of the top 100 architectural and design firms in North America.
I specialize in translating client objectives into exciting and meaningful spaces, and I use my experience to guide the upcoming generations of this future-focused profession. Generous mentorship helped me get to where I am today and I feel it’s my duty to keep paying that forward.
Architecture is a powerful vehicle for transforming how we live ― we all have functional, aesthetic and emotional needs that can be met with the right application of talent. Our firm’s collaborative spirit is the key to our success: we never stop connecting, we never stop learning and we never stop innovating. Let’s create something amazing together.
We asked, Don answered:
What drew you to architecture?
“I was in junior high, and I liked how design was both creative and constructive. I loved the fact that you could actually help people — that’s what buildings are for. Clients need new buildings, new interiors and new spaces because they’re changing. Clients are typically on the leading edge, and that’s where I like to be.”
What drove you to start your own firm?
“Back then architecture firms were feast-or-famine, and they were all local. This was pre-internet! Firms went up and down because of local economies, and I thought there was a better way. I wanted to diversify across geographies, building types and disciplines. I was looking for some sense of stability and growth and reinvestment, and being able to keep up with the times as the world changed.”
What do you like most about working at Kasian?
“This firm is colorful in its depth and breadth: its personalities, energy, capacity, sense of feeling, and dynamic. What more could you want?”
What inspires you?
“Creativity, really hitting the nail on the head when it comes to design. We call it ‘in-between thinking’ — when you read between the lines of the client’s brief, and you find the great idea in that.”
What makes a great design?
“Beauty is in the eye of the beholder. We’re always given a design brief, and we design to that. So, first of all, it’s important to answer the client’s needs: functionally, aesthetically, emotionally and physically. They have to love it.”