alum profile: JILL HAUCK SPAEH

January 12, 2011 § Leave a comment

This semester, Jill Hauck Spaeh (BS ) is teaching IAR 332 Material, Methods and Technologies. Last semester, we featured her work for the All Saints Episcopal Church Hall. Here is a more detailed profile of this successful alum and adjunct faculty member:

Briefly describe the path your career has taken since graduating from UNCG:

After working for a contractor for 2 years, I headed to Virginia Tech for grad school (MArch’94), then headed out to Vail, CO to design ski venues. I went to Europe for 4 years, first in Belfast, Northern Ireland then to Germany working for Behnisch Architecten in Stuttgart Germany.  I returned to Vail with a son and husband to work for CCY Architects designing for the rich and famous! I am now back in Greensboro and running my own practice while raising three wonderful children.

What are your currently working on?

My current projects include three large residential remodels, a project reinventing some 1960’s modern pre-school buildings, a studio for a fabric print designer, and some consulting for an architectural firm out of VA.

What are you passionate about in design?

Regardless if I am designing a stair, a piece of furniture or an 8,000 sq. ft. building. I look at each project from a holistic view; nothing is ever in isolation and must be/become part of a greater environment. I love that each project comes with new challenges, new requests from the client, and new opportunities to learn!

What projects are you most proud of?

Working for the world class Architects Behnisch in Germany was a dream come true, this level of design is a very amazing and humbling place to learn and grow.

Recently (2009), All Saints Episcopal Church Hall renovation is by far the most fun and I think most successful.

What is your approach to your designs?

Listen, listen, listen…develop a strong concept and the rest will fall into place.

What do you enjoy beyond your work?

Trail running (while my kids bike along), skiing, and an occasional triathlon.  We travel to Europe yearly,  and I enjoy cooking when I have time. Mostly however, when I’m not working I’m wearing my mommy hat, and this by far has been my greatest gift! I love being a mother! I also love all kinds of music and the theatre.

How did UNCG prepare you for your career in design?

Very well! Even as an architect I design from the inside out and often hear from clients “hmmm you don’t work like I thought an architect would work!” I take this as a major compliment and credit my interior architectural approach as the reason. I still keep sketchbooks (must have some 50 of them by now) and this was a methodology I picked up while studying at UNCG.

What are some suggestions you have for current students as they begin to think about their careers?

Even with the strength that computers add, learn how to sketch, how to convey your ideas with a pencil. Become comfortable with your strengths, but don’t be afraid to try something new….be patient, good design takes time! Oh, and don’t be afraid to use all that theory you’ve learned- it’s the base of great design.

Some of her beautiful work:

interior from her time in Vail. photo credit: Jill Spaeh

exterior from her time in CO. image credit: jill spaeh

model from her work in Germany. image credit: Jill Spaeh

interior of a private residence renovation. image credit: Jill Spaeh


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