In the second half of 2022, KSS is pleased to have welcomed 10 new team members in addition to the 11 individuals who joined the firm in the first half of the year. Our new hires joined KSS’ architecture, marketing, and administrative teams across our three offices. Read on to learn more about the newest KSSers!
Lauren Bellars, Architectural Designer
Lauren is drawn to the combination of the technical and creative realms within architecture. As an architect, she is excited by the opportunity to directly impact people by creating and promoting positive and memorable experiences within spaces. Her experience spans building hand-crafted models utilizing 3D printing to assisting on award submissions and construction documents. Lauren enjoys reading, listening to a wide variety of music, watercoloring, photography, and traveling. She appreciates studying the history of a place, experiencing it for herself, and returning home with a collection of new photographs, sketches, and watercolors that remind her of the adventure.
Ian Bucci, Architectural Intern
Ian is currently pursuing a Bachelor of Architecture at Drexel University as part of the “2+4” program. His previous experience includes commercial projects, developing as-built sets at a fast pace to provide owners and engineers with high-quality documentation, and residential architecture ranging from single-family homes to 500-unit mixed-use buildings. Ian is excited by the endless creative possibilities of architecture wherein project programs or typologies may be identical, but there is always another way to design to make it unique to a context. Over the pandemic, Ian found a new outlet for his creativity—mixology and cooking. He is also an avid runner and biker and hopes to add swimming to his repertoire in order to compete in triathlons in the future.
Molly Grassi, Proposal Coordinator
Molly’s background in journalism and her gravitation toward visual storytelling drive her to explore work at the nexus of the written and the visual. She has spent time in commercial real estate and, most recently, marketing for a large A/E firm where she focused on pursuits for transportation infrastructure and healthcare. Molly is excited to pursue work that equitably enriches and enhances the lives of people living in Philadelphia and the surrounding region, particularly through cultural, multi-modal, and adaptive reuse projects. A voracious reader and equally voracious consumer of reality television, Molly thrives at the intersection of high-brow and low-brow and is fascinated by the constantly evolving ways people tell each other stories.
Michael Grauer, Senior Project Architect
Michael is an experienced architect with specific expertise in the area of design research toward optimizing building envelopes including thermal and energy modeling and analysis. Rigorous in what it takes to get complex buildings constructed, Michael has worked on residential, healthcare, educational, civic, hospitality, and mixed-use projects. Prior to studying architecture, Michael worked as a contractor in residential construction which provided him with a helpful lens that informs his architectural practice. Outside of work, Michael enjoys photography, visual design, and the process of making things.
Ryan Dougherty, Senior Project Architect
Ryan is an experienced Project Architect with over 15 years of experience across several markets including higher education, K-12, labs and technology, transportation, civic, and performing arts. He is particularly interested in technology-based educational spaces and theatre design and is passionate about integrating more sustainable, biophilic design into projects. For Ryan, architecture ties together his disparate interests in service of the goal to create thoughtful environments for people who do not have a direct say in the spaces they occupy. Outside of work, Ryan enjoys biking, walking, bread baking, playing cello and guitar, hiking, and camping.
Elizabeth Heldridge, Architectural Designer
Elizabeth brings to KSS experience in mixed-use mid- and high-rise residential projects. Primarily interested in contextualizing the past, present, and future of our industry, Elizabeth is drawn to architecture because it allows her to work at the intersection of history+theory and technology. She is interested in computation design—in the role of emerging technologies in the way we practice, build, and interact with environments both real and imagined. In her free time, Elizabeth enjoys reading, sewing, knitting, and roller skating.
Kelsey Maher, Administrative Assistant
Kelsey has experience as an Executive Assistant for an Environmental Engineering firm where she focused on supporting staff and overseeing day-to-day firm operations. At KSS, Kelsey provides administrative assistance from our New York office. She is an avid traveler with an extensive bucket list of places she would like to visit.
Graham Nelson, Project Architect
Graham is a project architect with experience ranging from high-end residential work in southern New England to healthcare design and clinical lab planning. He has also worked on institutional workplace design, specifically adapting the typology to a post-pandemic world. Graham believes that architecture, as a physical manifestation of a society’s culture and values, is one of the most direct ways in which we can affect ecological and societal environments. With this in mind, he is eager to work with low-carbon design strategies and help make sustainable systems standard practice in the industry. Outside of practicing architecture, Graham is an avid amateur photographer, violin player, and hiker.
Bethany White, Architectural Intern
Bethany is currently pursuing a Bachelor of Architecture at Drexel University as part of the “2+4” program. She is drawn to the study and practice of architecture as it allows her to bring together her love of design and creating with her love of science and math. Bethany is also driven by the belief that architecture carries a great social responsibility and can therefore make an impact on the world in real-time. As she begins her professional career, Bethany is interested in working on educational projects to positively impact children’s learning experiences. In her free time, Bethany is an avid reader and writer and also enjoys knitting and crocheting.
Erik Yepez, Project Architect
Erik is an architectural designer with experience across mixed-use, residential, commercial, educational, hospitality, and adaptive reuse projects. He has worked on different phases of design from schematic design through construction administration and is fascinated by the process of bringing projects from an idea to a reality. Erik is driven by a lifelong passion for design and a desire to make an impact on the lives of those who use the buildings he helps to design and bring to life. In his free time, Erik likes to travel, explore, and connect with nature and different cultures.