Sasaki Appoints New Associate Principals
Sasaki is delighted to congratulate Carla Ceruzzi, Philip Dugdale, Margit Liander, and Meredith McCarthy on their recent promotions to associate principal. Each of them brings fresh thinking and new approaches to leadership that enable Sasaki to uphold our commitment to diversity, collaboration, and progress.
“Our resilience as an integrated design practice is rooted in our ability to provide pathways for emerging leaders that offer fresh perspectives and lead us towards innovative opportunities,” says Sasaki CEO, James Miner. “We believe that design is a collective, contextual, and values-driven exercise. Through our 70 years of practice, we have affirmed that diverse perspectives, blended disciplines, open exchange, deep engagement with clients and communities, commitment to context, and curiosity about new ways of thinking and making, will always unearth stronger design than a vision hewn by one author ever could. Individually, Carla, Philip, Margit, and Meredith are bold, ambitious and provocative practitioners; together, they are outstanding collaborators. At Sasaki, that’s what makes a leader.”
Carla Ceruzzi, AIA, LEED AP BD+C is an architect in Sasaki’s campus architecture practice with broad involvement in design, master planning implementation, and project management. She has significant experience working with institutional clients, and particularly enjoys projects that serve a diverse public. Her work seeks to build consensus around design solutions that are grounded in a deep understanding of each project’s aspirations, program, and site. She finds great fulfillment in helping clients develop design solutions that meet their needs within real-world budgets. Carla’s built experience includes academic, residential, student life, recreation and wellness, performing arts, and library spaces. She collaborates closely with landscape architects and planners to develop architectural designs within the context of both existing campus landscapes and ongoing site and strategic planning projects.
“The breadth of Carla’s skill set—from design, to technical thinking, to leading teams and representing clients’ interests—truly represents what it means to be a leading architect today,” says Sasaki principal and Chair of Architecture & Interior Design Victor Vizgaitis. “She sees our world not just in terms of what makes a great and responsible building, but what makes a great place that is interwoven with all aspects of the human experience.”
Philip Dugdale, ASLA, PLA is a landscape architect and co-director of Sasaki’s office in New York. He is responsible for the realization of a wide range of projects from pop-up parklets and urban plazas, to large-scale landscape planning, public parks, and waterfront developments. Philip brings proven experience in realizing complex urban sites across a range of scales, often collaborating with large multidisciplinary teams.
Philip looks to create dynamic, experiential landscapes that integrate art, ecology and resiliency. A systems thinker, he aims to balance the complex infrastructural demands of our urban environments with the evolving social, environmental, and cultural needs of today’s public spaces.
“Philip is the embodiment of what Sasaki does best—collaborating naturally with large, integrated teams internally and externally,” says principal and Chair of Landscape Architecture, Civil Engineering, & Ecology Michael Grove. “He has dedicated himself to honing the professional skills that contribute to Sasaki’s special sauce—design excellence, relationship building, and a fervent belief in a strong firm culture centered on authenticity and camaraderie. I am excited to see how Philip continues to lead, and to the future successes his leadership will add to Sasaki’s growth.”
Margit Liander, AICP is a planner and project manager in both Sasaki’s urban and campus practices. She brings her public-minded perspective and strong understanding of the interrelationships of institutions and cities to a range of projects within the firm. Margit has extensive local and national master planning experience for large-scale communities, urban districts, park systems, and university campuses. She manages complex multidisciplinary projects and works closely with a range of public and private sector clients.
As an urban planner, Margit aims to shape cities and universities around their people and communities. She strives to create visionary, yet realistic and sustainable solutions based on a strong understanding of the physical, regulatory, and cultural context. She believes that meaningful community engagement is key to ensure an equitable planning process and an implementable plan. As a result of her experience working with a range of urban stakeholders, Margit is an effective communicator who adapts easily to different audiences.
“Margit is an accomplished and versatile planner who can seamlessly move between markets and project types,” says principal and Chair of Planning & Urban Design Tyler Patrick. “She adeptly balances client needs and expectations with the voices of the communities with which she works. Within Sasaki, Margit is deeply engaged in the life of the firm and serves as a mentor to many of her colleagues.”
Meredith McCarthy, AIA works in both the commercial architecture and corporate interiors markets, excelling at taking projects from initial programming through design and construction. Meredith enjoys the problem-solving challenges that design presents, as well as the client relationships that emerge from meeting those challenges together. She’s a storyteller at heart, and seeks to find the narrative and vision in every project she takes on. Meredith often pushes ideas forward, working to develop concepts into implementable strategies and designs, always staying true to the overarching goals of the client and the project. She thrives in collaborative and creative environments, guiding teams through the design process while always looking to learn from her experiences and her teammates.
Having had great mentors herself, Meredith is passionate about opening doors and creating opportunities for people to grow and learn. As a Board Member for the Hideo Sasaki Foundation, Meredith leads the various youth design education programs offered throughout the year. She understands the benefits and strengths that diverse voices bring to design and is focused on making more equitable and inclusive pathways to help those voices be heard.
“Meredith brings such an incredible passion not just for the act of making architecture, but for making sure architecture can come from everyone,” says principal and Chair of Architecture & Interior Design Victor Vizgaitis. “As a founder of the Sasaki Foundation’s Summer Exploratory Experience in Design program and an incredible practitioner, her outreach to the future of the profession as well as the current communities we work in brings a richness to our design that wouldn’t otherwise be possible.”