Piper-Wind Architects, Inc. is located in the Kansas City Crossroads Arts District. We are a full service, general practice firm whose focus is in the design of architectural projects of the highest quality. We specialize in the planning and design of livable communities, traditional neighborhood development, and commercial districts. Our interests lie in creating quality places for people to live, work, gather and play through thoughtful renovations, new residential, commercial and public projects as well as careful planning practices.
We are motivated by the fundamental idea that good design enriches and benefits the lives of those who experience it.
We do not promote a particular style of architecture. Rather, we look to the physical, programmatic and social influences of the building's context to guide us to an appropriate architectural design that creates a memorable sense of place.
The quality of our projects is evident in the spaces and details that we create. In everything we do we strive to have a creative solution that results in a heightened experience for the user. Whether it is town planning, site design, interior renovations, or new building design, the creative process of designing and getting built quality space is the central focus of our firm.
...we create places for people.
Eric Piper and John Wind are the founding Principals of Piper-Wind Architects, Inc. Well before Eric and John started Piper-Wind Architects in 1996, they shared a common passion for architecture and how they conduct their lives in pursuit of fulfilling their professional goals.
Eric J. Piper, AIA, Principal
Eric began his architectural career in 1978 upon earning a Bachelor of Arts in Architecture, and, after two years of internship, earning a Masters of Architecture in 1982 with an emphasis on design and planning. Since that time, his professional interests have become increasingly broad while maintaining a focus on quality design, careful execution and personal service. It was a career-long goal to establish a firm centered on these three things within an office culture that fostered a balance between the staff's professional and personal lives. He has always been interested in the "big picture" items of developing a diverse and multi-disciplined practice of committed and talented professionals, improving the quality of the built environment through good design and thoughtful planning, and directing the process on projects of all sizes and levels of complexity with a "hands-on" approach to ensure that this quality is achieved.
For Eric, being a dedicated professional has meant striking the right balance between business, family and community. "I've always been one to try to impact the greater good of the community with my professional expertise, leadership experience and management skills". This is clearly seen in his many past civic, charitable, and professional activities as his role as President of the local chapter of the American Institute of Architects, Chairman of his city's Planning Commission, or as elder for his church can attest.
In the office, one of the greatest pleasures Eric has is in mentoring fellow professionals. "As our firm continues to attract intelligent, talented, motivated and enthusiastic people, I get most excited about developing young professionals into great architects, learning from their own experiences and perspectives, while also attuned to their personal growth." He spends a great deal of time keeping projects "on track" by being a very active member of the project team in his role as principal-in-charge or lead designer.
When he's not in the midst of directing a project, Eric always enjoys the opportunity to sit down and design. "I love problem solving in general, but to work out a design problem on paper still brings the greatest gratification. That's what architects are first and foremost trained to do in a way that no one else is." With such diverse interests as - art, history, anthropology, preservation, urban design and revitalization, neighborhood planning, context responsive design, regionalism and interiors, there is a strong knowledge base in which he draws from in his work.
When not working, Eric divides his time with his family and their shared interests in art, fitness, and refurbishing their old house. "We have very eclectic tastes that include everything from turn of the century Arts and Crafts and other Aesthetic Movements to Early Modern. We have a common interest in art, in collecting and in furnishing our home. The fun is in the search. There is always a project going on." "The physical fitness part allows me to clear my mind and maintain a positive level of energy. It's a commitment I've made not only to myself, but to my family, our clients, and the people with whom I work daily."
John M. Wind, AIA, Principal
John began his architectural career in 1984 upon earning a Bachelor of Architecture degree from Kansas State University (which included a semester of study abroad in Copenhagen, Denmark). Since that time his daily focus has remained the same ...Work Hard, Be Creative, Listen Carefully, and Exceed Expectations
For John, being a dedicated professional also means striking the right balance between family, business, and charitable work. "Being part of the community, whether it is attending my daughter's equestrian events, or participating as a Board Member for a Not-for-Profit organization, enriches my life and, I believe, makes me a better architect"
In the office, John loves to roll-up his sleeves and draw. It does not matter if he is developing a design for a custom house or working through a challenging construction detail for a multi-story building. For John, getting it right is the only acceptable solution. "We expect the projects Piper-Wind gets involved with to be around for a long time, so, to best serve our Client's and anyone who may experience one of our buildings, we believe it is worth investing the time and energy to develop the proper solution."
When he is not drawing, John is most likely working with other Team Members overseeing and guiding projects. "I really enjoy the collaborative process and working as a Team. I have found that the combination of working with Piper-Wind's staff of very talented individuals, along with knowledgeable engineers and builders, where everyone on the team is working to deliver the best project possible, can result in incredibly well designed buildings that exceed our Clients expectations."
In his spare time, it would not be unusual to find John dabbling in Plein Air painting, tending to his yard and garden; or walking Daisy, the Wind's high energy dog. "I enjoy being outdoors; I enjoy the simple pleasure of a well manicured yard; and I value time to be alone with my thoughts... often times they are thoughts about something I am working on at the office."
Christopher A Martin, AIA, LEED AP BD+C, Associate
Christopher holds a Bachelor of Architecture degree from Kansas State University. After graduation in 1996, he returned home to Kansas City to begin his architectural career. Since then, he has had extensive experience with locally and internationally recognized projects while working with a diverse range of public and private clients.
At Piper-Wind Architects, Christopher serves as both a Project Manager and Lead Project Architect on various building types to provide clients with comprehensive planning, design and construction services. He believes in the notion that the professional service of architecture is responsible for instilling value within its product; value to both the clients he serves as well as the community. To this end, Christopher remains involved in many aspects of a project from strategic development and programming to budget analysis, scheduling, design, technical documentation and construction administration.
When not at the office, Christopher can be found spending time with his wife and three children or many of the other friends and family he has throughout the local area.
Ken Low, AIA, Associate
Upon completion of a Bachelor of Architecture degree from Kansas State University in 1978, Ken began his architectural career in Springfield, Missouri. After spending five years practicing in southwest Missouri, Ken relocated to the Kansas City area. Through his years of experience as a project manager and a firm owner, Ken has worked with a wide range of public and private clients. Project types include governmental, commercial, educational, offices, health care, student housing, residential, and institutional facilities.
Ken views each and every project, no matter what size or complexity, as a new challenge to go above and beyond clients' goals and expectations. It is that challenge that helps Ken maintain his passion and enthusiasm for the practice of architecture, pushing the envelope to find creative solutions to meet client's needs.
Dedicated to meeting clients needs through exceptional client service, Ken is a firm believer that this begins by listening - listening to understanding clients needs and wants, being flexible and following through is the only way to "get it right". This allows Ken to provide the information required to allow clients to make the best informed decision.
Another of Ken's strengths is utilizing his unique problem solving skills to coordinate team efforts to address complex design issues and challenging budgets. "I enjoy managing projects by leading the entire team to work together toward a common goal - a successful project and a happy client. Every project is an opportunity to not only lead and mentor younger team members but to also learn from their perspectives and experiences".
Giving back to the community is also high on Ken's priority list. His public service includes his community as a member of the City of Westwood Planning Commission, his church as a member of the St Agnes Buildings and Grounds Committee, the Shawnee Mission East Band Booster Board, and the Boy Scouts of America, where he has helped many young men become Eagle Scouts, including his two sons. In his spare time, Ken enjoys spending time with his family, working on home remodeling projects, being outdoors and camping, boating, attending KSU football games with his family and exercising at the gym or cycling with his wife.
Michael D. Blackledge, Associate AIA, LEED AP BD+C
Michael joined Piper-Wind Architects, Inc. in the spring of 2000 as an intern and currently enjoys the role of Project Manager and Job Captain on a variety of project types and sizes.
Michael completed his Bachelor of Architecture degree from the University of Kansas in the spring of 2000. He then joined Piper-Wind Architects, Inc. full time after working part time for the firm during his last year of school. Joining the firm just four years after it was founded has allowed him to develop and share in the collaborative and disciplined work ethic the firm puts into every project. Michael shares in John and Eric's passion to provide not only a quality product but quality service to their clients.
The problem solving nature of architecture has always intrigued Michael about the career of an architect. "Each project is a new puzzle to solve with a unique set of circumstances, so the work is always refreshing itself." Michael also enjoys the fact that a host of other skills and disciplines are inherent to the practice of architecture, so that politics, communications, the arts, community service, and a host of others are all relevant to practicing architecture.
While at Piper-Wind Architects, Inc., Michael has enjoyed experiencing all aspects of a project from initial space planning all the way through construction administration. "I believe being able to experience all aspects of the building process is essential to becoming a well rounded architect, and Piper-Wind Architects has been great at providing that opportunity."
Michael has received his LEED accreditation and enjoys reading articles and researching new materials and methods that can potentially be built in to the basic services architects provide. There are also growing opportunities to exceed these basic green building practices with more and more clients desiring environmentally friendly buildings.
When not at the office, Michael enjoys taking in a good movie, or you can find him on one of the many mountain bike trails around the Kansas City area.
Lindsay Tatro, AIA, LEED AP BD+C
Lindsay Tatro joined Piper-Wind Architects in 2005 and since that time has served as an architectural intern on a variety of projects including custom residential, commercial and Governmental projects.
Lindsay Tatro graduated in 2005 with a Bachelor of Architecture from Kansas State University. In addition to her studies at Kansas State, she also spent a semester studying abroad at Italart Centro Studi Santa Chiara in the Tuscany region of Italy. After graduation she began her professional career at Piper-Wind Architects.
In the office one of the greatest pleasures Lindsay has is learning something new about architecture and design everyday. She feels it is vital to the practice of architecture to grow and learn as a professional every chance possible.
For Lindsay, being a dedicated professional has meant furthering her interest and passion for sustainable architecture by becoming a LEED accredited professional. She believes that architects must take a leading role in shaping communities through sustainable design practices.
When not working, Lindsay is involved in a variety of organizations. She is a member of the local chapters of the AIA, USGBC and Women in Design. To help ensure downtown residents have a voice in their neighborhood, Lindsay serves on the Downtown Neighborhood Association board. She enjoys her role as Membership Vice President and started the DNA recycling committee, which is working to bring recycling services to downtown residents. Lindsay also serves on her condo's Homeowners Association board.
Upon moving to Kansas City, Lindsay and her husband decided to try out the urban lifestyle and chose to live in the River Market just north of downtown. In her free time, she enjoys walking the family dog around downtown keeping an eye on the redevelopment of the area as it becomes energized with more new residents and places each day.
Gretchen Blain, AIA, LEED AP BD+C
Gretchen joined Piper-Wind in 2005 after graduating from Kansas State University with a Bachelor of Architecture degree. In addition to her studies at Kansas State, Gretchen also spent a semester studying abroad at Italart Centro Studi Santa Chiara located in Tuscany, Italy. Since graduation, Gretchen has become a licensed Architect and is LEED Accredited Professional
In the office she works on a variety of project types including both new construction and renovations on custom residential, commercial and governmental projects. One of her primary responsibilities is management of the LEED Accreditation Process for a new construction core and shell office building.
Gretchen believes that buildings and communities should be designed and built in a way that leads to environmental responsibility and improves the quality of life and benefits society. She believes designs should be cohesive with their surrounding environment and still embody unique characteristics that use materials and technology in innovative ways.
Outside of the office Gretchen is very involved within the downtown Kansas City Community. She serves on the Downtown Neighborhood Association as Events Vice President. Within that organization she works to connect people who live and work in the neighborhood, to promote the neighborhood within the city and regional area, and to work on everyday issues that impact the residents of downtown. She is also involved in the local chapters of the USGBC, Women in Design and AIA Kansas City.
Gretchen is also an avid runner and enjoys exploring Kansas City and its historic neighborhoods on foot.
Sarah Kempf, AIA, LEED AP BD+C
Sarah joined Piper-Wind in the fall of 2006. Since joining Piper-Wind, she has worked on a variety of architectural projects in the Kansas City area including work on custom residential, commercial and governmental projects.
Sarah received her education from Kansas State University. While attending the university she was involved in various student organizations, had an eight month internship in San Antonio, TX and earned a Business Minor in addition to a Bachelor of Architecture.
Sarah believes that everything in the design environment should be thoroughly designed and thought through from the relationship to its surroundings to the smallest detail. The clients' needs and environmental stewardship should be at the basis of all design.
Outside of the office Sarah is involved with the local AIA chapter as an IDP liaison and a member of the Downtown Neighborhood Association. She enjoys educating and bringing awareness to issues within the design profession and the architecture community.
In her "spare-time" Sarah gets involved in the local community by being involved in non-profit organizations and volunteering as a high school club volleyball coach.
Deb Seeman, Registered Architect (RA)
Deb holds a Bachelor of Fine Arts degree from the University of Kansas, a Master of Fine Arts from The Art Institute of Chicago and a Bachelor of Architecture from the University of Kansas. After graduation, in 1983 Deb returned to her home town of Kansas City.
From the beginning of her architectural career, Deb has focused her energies on interior architecture and in that capacity has created some of the most compelling corporate and institutional interior spaces in Kansas City and across the country.
In Deb's role as Senior Interior Designer at Piper-Wind Architects she is committed to overseeing and developing state-of-the-art interior design solutions that combine the proper balance of functionality, creative design (including furniture and fixture selections), and project budget.
On Workplace Interiors, Deb is on the leading edge of creating interior environments that maximize productivity, stimulate employee's sense of well being and, simply stated, are fun places to work.
On Student Life interior design projects, whether it be a Residence Hall, Library or Student Center, Deb is a master at creating "social places" where student interaction naturally takes place through the incorporation of carefully layed out spaces, flexible seating arrangements, inviting color palettes, and thoughtfully selected interior finishes and furniture.
In Deb's free time, she enjoys oil painting and most anything related to the arts.
Pat Hennessey, Office Administrator
Pat Hennessey received her education from Kansas University majoring in accounting. After leaving Lawrence, KS, she lived in New Haven, CT before settling in Kansas City, MO.
Pat has worked in the architectural industry for 21 years. She managed offices in Phoenix, AZ and Kansas City, MO for a firm for 15 years and has spent the last seven years with Piper-Wind Architects. Although accounting is her first love, she enjoys the variety of managing an architectural office. She enjoys the personal interaction this allows with all everyone in the firm.
Outside of the office, Pat has been involved in fundraising for the Susan G. Koman Cancer Foundation and also coordinating the Christmas Store for an inter-city church through her church home for several years. Her other outside interests lie in cooking, wine, animals and of course family.
Cary Conrad Goodman, FAIA 1943 - 2010
Cary C. Goodman, FAIA practiced architecture since 1970 after graduating from the University of Texas School of Architecture and Urban Design. His works have been published in national magazines, received numerous awards for design excellence, served as an adjunct faculty at the University of Kansas School of Architecture and Design, and juried numerous AIA Design Award programs. His work has been exhibited at the Cooper Hewitt, and the Smithsonian's National Museum of Design.
Cary is known as an architect of skylines and urban communities. His work and leadership in the design community can be seen throughout the country.
Cary was the founding principal of GoodmanArchitecture, a practice based on the concept of partnering. For the past 5 years GoodmanArchitecture has been associated with Piper-Wind Architects on several significant projects including the Hallbrook Two Office Building, and the 47th and Belleview High-rise Condominium project.
Cary was a dear friend and a mentor to all of us at Piper-Wind Architects. He has left a lasting impression on our firm and his contribution to the profession of architecture and the built environment transcends generations.
In Cary's words: "Just imagine the joy of getting up every day to just imagine."