Whitten Architects recently expanded our team with the addition of architects Alyssa Phanitdasack and Adam Darter. We asked Alyssa and Adam to share a bit about their backgrounds and influences.
Having grown up in a suburb of Miami, Alyssa's early childhood was shaped by the flora and fauna of the Everglades. She loved learning about each plant and creature and how everything worked together to create full and rich ecosystems. She received a Bachelors of Arts in Biology and Visual Arts with an emphasis on sculpture from Bowdoin College. While there, she studied abroad in Copenhagen, which was formative in shaping her design values and aesthetic. Drawn by an admiration for timber framing and a deep interest in sustainability, she moved west and graduated from the University of Oregon, after studying abroad at the Emily Carr University of Art and Design in Vancouver, British Columbia.
Following internships with architectural firm Xian Dai in Shanghai and the Seattle Architecture Foundation, Alyssa worked for design firm CO Architects in Los Angeles before moving back to Maine in 2016. Since moving back to Maine, she has worked with PDT Architects (now CHA) and SMRT Architects and Engineers on a variety of project types. In addition to being a Registered Licensed Architect with NCARB and AIA, Alyssa is the President of the Portland Society for Architecture and a board member of the ACE Mentor Program of Maine.
At Whitten Architects, Alyssa finds that her approach to architecture is to balance discovery and craft with logic and reason to shape the experience of a space that conveys a relationship to light, a connection to the outside, and a sensitivity to program and place. Alyssa was attracted to WA's diverse portfolio and the firm's philosophy of working with the site to create unique solutions that are individually tailored for each client.
When she's not at her desk, Alyssa is slowly renovating a 70's Gambrel style house in Yarmouth, playing the guitar, and enjoying the ebbs and flow of each season in Maine.
Adam grew up living in a housing development that was under construction, so he spent much of his childhood climbing into foundations, running through newly framed houses, and asking contractors what they were doing. This experience subconsciously piqued Adam's interest in architecture, particularly in the process and how things are put together.
Adam went on to receive his Bachelors in Architecture from Roger Williams University. After an internship with SLAM Collaborative, he worked for Andre Kikoski Architect, a small New York firm specializing in private residential, commercial residential, and hospitality projects. From there he went on to work at Wimberly Interiors, a global firm specializing in hospitality interiors.
As a registered architect and LEED AP, Adam is well versed in LEED standards, which provides him a foundation to design and build more ecologically conscious homes that have a strong relationship with the natural surroundings of a site.
Adam was attracted to Whitten Architects because of the firm's site-specific design philosophy integrated in the natural landscape. He also appreciates the firm's attention to detail and that even the smallest design decision is given the time and care it deserves. Adam believes that each team member brings a different perspective and set of skills to the table and that learning from them and creating with them is what makes each project special.
In his free time, Adam enjoys soccer, archery, and hiking.
We are happy to have both Alyssa and Adam on board!