Perkins+Will Welcomes Jessica Figenholtz

The Chicago office of global architecture and design firm Perkins+Will announces the addition of a new Director of Higher Education Planning. Jessica Figenholtz, who assumed her new role June 9, will be involved in generating growth and exposure for the Chicago office’s higher education practice by engaging clients and ensuring the creation of innovative 21st century learning environments.

Figenholtz is a widely-recognized expert in higher education design with more than 13 years of professional experience. She is deeply involved in planning, redevelopment, and sustainability, and has developed long-term relationships with some of the world’s top higher education and K-12 institutions. Known for her agility in operating within multiple practice areas, including higher education, K-12, retail, and commercial interiors, Figenholtz is regarded for her thorough understanding of the client and project context, while pushing ahead the boundaries of design. Figenholtz arrives at Perkins+Will after being at Cannon Design since 2002, where she served most recently as the Associate Vice President & Operations Leader for the K-12 & Higher Education Studio.

“We are absolutely thrilled to have Jessica join the Chicago office of Perkins+Will, where she will play an impactful role in the continued growth of our higher education practice,” said Managing Director Gina Berndt, IIDA, ASID, LEED AP. “Her wide breadth of project experience, dedication to finding new project opportunities, and sensitivity and attention to client needs make her a highly-valued member of our team.”

As Director of Higher Education Planning, Figenholtz’s past work includes a variety of projects for the University of Chicago, including Harper Court, the Law School Library Tower, and the Law School Auditorium and Classroom Wing; the University of Illinois; Chicago Public Schools; and William Rainey Harper College. Figenholtz is a LEED Accredited Professional and earned her Bachelor of Science in Architectural Studies from the University of Illinois at Urbana – Champaign. She currently serves on the AIA Chicago Board of Directors, and is heavily involved in the US Green Building Council and ACE Mentor Program of Chicago.

The Chicago office of Perkins+Will is the firm’s founding office. Established in 1935 by Lawrence Perkins and Philip Will, Jr., the office remains the largest in the firm, harnessing the expertise of more than 250 architects, interior designers, and planners. The office’s multi-disciplinary work spans nearly every sector including higher education, K-12 education, healthcare, corporate, commercial, civic, and science and technology. From its acclaimed Crow Island School to the award-winning Rush University Medical Center Hospital Tower, the Chicago office has a legacy of award-winning design excellence. The Chicago office has garnered hundreds of awards from prestigious industry publications and organizations in the region and around the world.