Sears Barrett, A.I.A
Master of Architecture
University of Oregon
Bachelor of English Literature and Fine Arts
Colgate University, Hamilton, NY
Sears began his architectural career working as a Vista volunteer in the poorest neighborhoods in Denver. Similar to legal aid, the Community Design Center offered free architectural services to neighborhood organizations focused on improving their facilities. This led to a leadership position at Denver Free University where he coordinated the educational program of the nations largest community based free school.
An interest in construction and a fascination with solar design inspired the next chapter in Sears’ career. In 1978 he founded one of the first design-build firms specializing in Passive Solar design. After completing a number of earth integrated, passive solar homes Sears was asked to join the staff of The Solar Energy Institute (now known as The National Renewable Energy Institute). Sears was responsible for conceiving and managing research programs on the performance of passive solar designs.
In 1984 Sears decided to return to his primary love of design. His goal was to fuse the lessons learned at the Solar Energy Institute with elegant, site sensitive residential design. For over twenty years his firm has built a reputation for designs that demonstrate creativity, an artful use of materials, and a fine sense of proportion.
What is most exciting to Sears is the increasing interest among his clients in conservation and sustainability. “We have always applied passive solar design principles to our work when the site allowed. Now we have many clients who are looking for that unique blend of sustainability and elegant design.