With its 50th anniversary on the horizon, BVH Architects has made some changes with an eye toward the next 50 years.
The architectural firm, which has offices in Lincoln and Omaha, recently shuffled its leadership with an eye toward transitioning to the future.
Kristine Dorn, based in the Lincoln office, has taken over leadership of the firm. Her official title is vision director, but she said she essentially has the role of president. She also has been promoted to a principal in the firm.
Dorn said the move, as well as other leadership promotions and the naming of other principals, is part of a gradual leadership transition.
Former President Paul Jeffrey will remain as chairman of the board.
BVH, which will celebrate its 50th anniversary next year, also named Mark Bacon creative director, Clay Lewis finance director and Steve Miller practice director.
“I'm honored to have the opportunity to lead BVH and the talented people who work in both our studios toward a new era,” Dorn said in a news release. “This comes at a transformative time in our industry, and our new direction reflects that.”
One of the transformations the company is going through is with the use of technology.
BVH, which was an early adopter of green building technology, is trying to keep up with the rapidly changing technology in its industry.
One example of that is an app a staffer created to document restoration work the firm has been doing at the state Capitol.
The app "allows us to document every nook and cranny" of each room and functions almost like virtual reality, Dorn said in an interview. The app also has the ability to produce charts and graphs that outline statistics on where the design process is and provides a handy photo archive of the work being done.
It's a big change on the Capitol project, where BVH has had a presence almost continually since the 1970s.
Still, technology is just one part of BVH's focus going forward.
"Although technology is great, it's still just a tool," Dorn said.
There is a need to marry that technology with a really strong team of experts, Dorn said, which is what BVH is attempting to do.
Dorn, in her role as vision director, has responsibility for shaping the firm's strategic vision while the other execs each focus on a specific area of the business.
Dorn said the choice of a Lincoln employee to lead the firm -- Jeffrey is based in Omaha -- has no real significance. Even though the Lincoln office is nearly twice as big as the Omaha one, she said the firm tries hard to blur "the boundary that happens to be at the Platte River."
"At this point, it's less about geography and more about skill sets and the highest and best purpose," she said.
Dorn said BVH wants to have an impact in Lincoln, Omaha "and any community where we work."