Engineer of the Moment: Valentine's Day Special
At LERA, we value our ability to cultivate an open, collaborative relationship with the architects that we work with. So much so, in fact, that some of our engineers have taken to marrying them! Get to know the personal side of LERA with our Valentine's Day profile of two bona fide A-E power couples:
ADAM KIRK, PE, Associate
Adam and his wife, Andrea, married in 2013. Having met in architecture design studio as undergraduate students, they remained friends for seven years before they started dating, proving that engineers never give up on a passion project!
With LERA since 2010, Adam works on a wide variety of projects, and is currently on the design team for the Lucas Museum of Narrative Art in Los Angeles, CA. In 2016, he was named the Editor in Chief of Cross Sections, the quarterly publication of the Structural Engineers Association of New York (SEAoNY), for which he has been a Member of the Publications Committee since 2010 (rising to Chair in 2016). Andrea is an architect with Mitchell | Giurgola Architects, and most recently worked on LaGuardia Community College's Center III Building Renovation and Recladding in Long Island City, NY.
At home, the A-E couple avoids "talking shop." However, Adam admits, "It's nice having someone that understands your struggles." Likewise, Andrea tries not to vent any frustrations she may have about working with structural engineers to her husband. Although they have yet to work together professionally, the possibility has been discussed. Have they ever thought about starting their own design firm? "It's a dream of ours; maybe some day."
Adam and Andrea live in Brooklyn with their dog, Zoey, a 10-year-old lab mix.
Pictured left to right: Adam and Andrea; Eddy, Stephanie and their dog, Hayan.
EDDY ROBERTS, PE, Senior Associate
Eddy met his wife, Stephanie, through a mutual friend from college, who had been secretly matchmaking behind the scenes for months. After dating for four years, they held two weddings -- one in the U.S., and one in Stephanie's home country of South Korea -- and will celebrate their fifth anniversary this April.
Eddy joined LERA in 2007, and specializes in the structural design of tall and complex buildings. One of the proudest moments of his career came when the Lotte World Tower topped out in March 2016 in Seoul, South Korea. Eddy saw the project through from beginning to end, having started as a young engineer on the project team in 2009 before becoming the Project Manager in 2011. At 555 m (1,820 ft) tall, Lotte is the fifth tallest building in the world. Eddy enjoys taking some time away from work to co-teach a graduate architectural course at the University of Pennsylvania, where he lends his structural expertise to often creative and far-reaching student designs. Stephanie is an architect at HOK, where she has worked on a number of local projects.
What's it like being married to an architect? "Incredibly fulfilling," says Eddy. "As a structural engineer who also studied architecture, I get to live somewhat vicariously through her work and vice versa. We enjoy discussing our ideas about architecture at home, and sharing our respective insight from different corners of the industry." Have they ever wanted to work together? "We would love to if the opportunity arose," says Eddy. However, he concedes that their competing styles of design can lead to some heated debates. "She's more of a minimalist, whereas I tend towards more elegant, yet structurally interesting designs."
Eddy and Stephanie live in Astoria with their dog, Hayan, a three-year-old Maltese, and enjoy taking architecture-oriented trips together, such as a recent trip to Copenhagen as part of a larger tour of Northern Europe.