Mary Morissette FAIA, LEED AP
Mary Morissette knew she wanted to be an architect in early childhood. First, she drew houses while watching morning cartoons. Later, she would hold mirrors up to the floor plans of her father’s residential designs that he also built; she wanted to know what it would be like if the houses were mirrored from their actual positions. After hearing similar stories from numerous colleagues, Mary is convinced architects see the world from a different perspective. She explains, “Our brains function differently so I believe architects are uniquely qualified to be leaders in the built environment.”
Early in Mary’s career, this belief started her down a path of advocating for architects and the profession to the broader community. She notes that designers do a great job of talking among themselves, but not as great a job of educating clients or the public about the value that architects offer. Her election to the prestigious AIA College of Fellows was in part because of the ways in which she advocates for the profession. Mary has always been passionate about encouraging ongoing dialogues on on why design matters with clients, elected officials, business leaders, the general public and her own colleagues. She believes architecture is a way of life, not just a profession; architecture nourishes the human spirit.
Mary’s work bears this out with numerous design and honor awards. Although she focuses on institutional clients, primarily complex healthcare, judicial and educational facilities, she still successfully marries form with function. The Lindsey-Flanigan Courthouse at the Denver Justice Center, a LEED Gold-certified facility, won both AIA Colorado and AIA Denver design awards as well as an AGC Golden Hardhat award. The renovated Byron G. Rogers US Courthouse won an AIA Denver design award, AGC Golden Hardhat award and a GSA national environmental award.
The scope of her projects have exceeded two million square feet and construction costs of more than $1 billion. She oversees project delivery from the site and building master planning phases through construction and occupancy, and has extensive experience in historic renovation and new construction. Previously, Mary worked for Jacobs as a Senior Architect assisting the Department of Veterans Affairs, Office of Construction & Facilities Management with the administration of construction for a new two million square foot, $1.2 billion medical campus in Aurora, CO. Her duties included cost evaluation, technical review, quality control, and design and construction coordination.
Mary’s other passions include the arts and travel, and she has been fortunate to take many trips that in some way incorporate architecture, art and history. She explains these elements “are bound together in a formidable manner that tells the stories of our societies. The world is complex and wonderful, and I love to explore.” Closer to home, she treasures her life in Denver. Her affinity for the outdoors began in childhood in the Blue Ridge Mountains of Virginia and life in Colorado allows her to hike, ski, golf, camp, cycle and jeep throughout the state.
However, her happiest moments are with family: husband Guy, daughter Kaley and numerous rescue dogs and cats adopted over the years. Ironically, Kaley currently lives in New York City and works for Paige Hospitality Group. Now, Page (or Paige) is a way of life for the Morissette family!