Sam is an artist and licensed architect whose approach is one of creative pragmatism. Her practice is informed by her varied experiences, which include getting a BFA in printmaking and drawing from the California College of the Arts, deepening her knowledge of architecture while living in a hanging tent at Taliesin West, contributing to many civic and institutional projects at EHDD in San Francisco, and improving the built environment through affordable housing at LEVER in Portland.



What happens to all the books that can’t be contained in a library’s shelves, and how do they store them safely? Phase 4 of the UC Northern Regional Library Facility answers that question with a 28k sf addition to the existing facility in Richmond, CA. The unique structure houses 3.1 million books in high-bay shelving which rise 30’ above an ultra-flat concrete slab. The project includes an adjoining administrative area with views of a protected meadowland.To protect such a valuable collection, the book storage area had to be windowless, but that didn’t mean it had to be boring. Without inflating the limited budget, I was able to add visual interest to the corrugated metal rainscreen: By alternating colors in the standard size panels, I created a pattern of ISBN barcodes for meaningful books selected by the UC librarians. The result is a structure that abstractly nods to its purpose and contents.


Portland, like many American cities, is facing a housing crisis. In 2017, Portland put out an affordable housing mandate to help address this growing inequity. Dekum Court Phase 1 provides 47 units of affordable housing in two 3-story wood-framed buildings. Located in a residential neighborhood of North Portland, the massing and shades of blue paint keep Dekum Court in scale with surrounding single-family houses.I care deeply about inclusive design. I ensured not only that all accessibility codes were followed, but that the units and surrounding site are equitable and enjoyable for all the project’s residents.


Albina One is a new multifamily affordable housing building in a Portland neighborhood which is part of the historic lower Albina district. The design and color palette of Albina One acknowledges its history by taking inspiration from Afrofuturist art and design. To further center local talent, a building-scale mural will be commissioned from a local artist.There was a code mandate to have a green roof, but it would have been inaccessible and therefore not an amenity for the residents. With over half the site open for landscaping, I was able to show that we had equivalent green space to the roof, but at the ground level where both building residents and local pollinators could enjoy it.


The UCSC Coastal Biology Building is part of a campus expansion along the Pacific Ocean bluffs in Santa Cruz, CA. It houses teaching labs, offices, a large seminar room, and a seawater classroom for the study of the coastal sciences.This project was a true learning experience. From figuring out how to gracefully run conduit to glulam column-mounted projectors, to coordinating a vertical wood siding clad blind door, there were ample opportunities to find creative solutions to practical problems.


Side projects for fun or team bonding