Stonehill & Taylor Architects announces expansion

New York—March 3, 2009—Paul Taylor AIA, president of Stonehill & Taylor, and Henry Meltzer AIA, executive vice president, today announced that Stonehill & Taylor, the Manhattan-based architecture and interior design firm, will bring on three new equity owners. The announcement comes on the heels of yet another year of extraordinary growth for the firm. Architects Neill Parker, Jr., Michael Suomi, and Christina Zimmer have each been instrumental in securing that success and will now join the management team charged with maintaining it. Parker, Suomi, and Zimmer will assume the new title of principal.

This marks the firm’s first management change in ten years: Since John Stonehill retired in 1999, Paul Taylor has been the sole equity owner in the firm. For Taylor and Meltzer, the decision to expand the management team was part of a natural evolution.

“Over the years Stonehill & Taylor’s clientele and breadth of services has expanded, and our prominence in the industry has grown,” said Taylor, who will continue to serve as president. “It is a strong and hopeful sign for the firm that we are able to grow the partnership like this, and we are tremendously proud of our entire staff for making it possible.”

Stonehill & Taylor’s new principals have made significant contributions to the firm over the years. Neill Parker, Jr., who has been with the company for 21 years, oversees the firm’s growing academic residence practice and historic preservation projects, in addition to its hospitality work. In his five years at the firm, Michael Suomi has nearly doubled the firm’s interiors business, which he heads. Christina Zimmer, who has worked at the firm for 10 years, is a key manager of Stonehill & Taylor’s booming hospitality practice.  

It is significant that this announcement, which coincides with a number of new project wins, is being made during a national economic downturn. Taylor planned carefully for this year and those to come, monitoring the early signs of the slow-down and adjusting company strategy accordingly. As a result, the firm is unusually well-positioned to achieve its current goal: sustainable growth.  In fact, notes Taylor, in some ways the economic climate has actually helped the firm to keep a healthy check on its pace of growth.

Stonehill & Taylor attributes its success at least partly to the fact that it has always acted as more than an architecture and design firm for its clients. Unlike most firms, Stonehill & Taylor tends to work directly with property owners, assuming a crucial role in the team very early in the process. As a result, Stonehill & Taylor often takes on responsibility for site selection, consultant hiring, and business development consulting as well as its more obvious services of architecture and design.

“Stonehill & Taylor’s business philosophy—of genuine partnering, consultancy, and advocacy—goes back years. Neill, Mike, and Christina embody that philosophy and we are confident they will foster it. This will be the key to maintaining the vibrancy of the firm and the longevity of our success,” said Taylor.

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