Global architecture and design firm Perkins and Will announced today that Casey Jones, former Director of Design Excellence at the U.S. Department of State and the U.S General Services Administration, has joined the firm. For the last two decades, Jones’s advocacy for excellence in the design of public architecture and civic spaces has positively transformed communities, neighborhoods, and cities around the world. Jones will now lead Perkins and Will’s civic buildings strategy globally, and oversee best practices for the design of public spaces and buildings.
“Casey’s insights will be central to our firm’s continued evolution as we sharpen our focus on civic projects,” says Perkins and Will CEO Phil Harrison. “His comprehensive understanding of how these projects are achieved, from conception through procurement and delivery, will be invaluable to our clients in the civic sector. He knows this space better than anyone.”
“I’m excited to be part of a firm that has such an obvious commitment to improving civic life,” Jones says. “Perkins and Will’s global reach and resources present an enormous opportunity to strategize with clients and colleagues about how to create projects that improve communities and give more than they take. Civic buildings represent our collective aspirations and speak to who we are as a society. I’ve spent my entire career on this issue. For me, there is no more-important responsibility.”
Jones will work with design teams across the firm’s architecture, interior design, landscape architecture, and urban design practices – areas that he oversaw in his most recent role as the U.S. State Department’s Deputy Director for Overseas Building Operations. There, he led more than 800 professionals on the design, construction, operations and maintenance of hundreds of ongoing projects, ranging from new embassies and consulates to the renovation of existing properties. Prior to that, he served as the U.S. State Department’s Director of Design Excellence, during which he established the Excellence in Diplomatic Facilities Initiative to elevate the quality of embassy projects. This followed his service as the Director of Design Excellence at the U.S. General Services Administration. The program’s founder, Ed Feiner, heads Perkins and Will’s Design Leadership Council.
“Casey has a vision, which he backs up with skilled delivery,” Feiner says. “I’ve watched him thrive in governmental work, which can present some very exacting design and management challenges. His decades of contributions to architecture, taken as a whole, exemplify how well-designed public spaces can reflect the best of humanity.”
In addition to his experience in overseeing large-scale civic architecture projects, Jones has helped develop design and construction strategies for clients such as the Whitney Museum of American Art, Yale University, Motown, the Mexican Ministry of Culture, and the History Channel. He is a fellow of the Design Trust for Public Space, where his work helped lead to the 2002 decision to reverse New York City’s planned demolition of the High Line. He was also associate director of the Van Alen Institute, which explores how design can enrich our lives. Jones has taught courses on urban design at Columbia University, University of Michigan, and Parsons School of Design. He has a master’s degree in architecture from the University of Michigan and a bachelor’s degree in architecture from the University of Virginia.