Member Profile: John Quiter, AIA
John Quiter is a semi-retired Bay Area architect who runs a small design practice from his Berkeley Hills home.
He attended Iowa State University and graduated with a Bachelor of Architecture Degree in 1972. After graduation, he worked for four years in Atlanta for Miller Waltz Deidrich Architects and followed that with extensive travel in Europe and North Africa. In 1980, he joined Cuningham Architects in Minneapolis, a firm of ten people doing work in residential and religious architecture and in adaptive reuse of historic structures.
His first major project for the firm was the Breck Chapel of the Holy Spirit, which won a Minnesota AIA 25-year award in 2008. The 25-year award is given to a sole project each year that has stood the test of time for design excellence. In 1982, Mr. Quiter became a shareholder in the firm and, in 1997, following John Cuningham’s initial leadership, he became the second president of the organization.
Under his leadership, the organization grew from 30 people in a single location to over 200 people with offices in four U.S. cities plus Beijing, Madrid, and Seoul Korea, and expanded its design services to include the hospitality and entertainment, educational, healthcare, housing, religious, urban planning and office markets. Design services in those markets included Architecture, Planning, Sustainable Design, Interior Design and Landscaping. The organization is viewed as a design leader in its various markets. Its work is frequently published and it has won numerous design awards including three AIA Minnesota 25-year awards in eleven years.
In 1998, he moved from the Minneapolis office to the Los Angeles office to help solidify a merger with a Los Angeles firm. Mr. Quiter’s leadership extended beyond the firm to the community. He chaired the ULI LA Urban Plan program for 6 years and served on the ULI LA Executive Committee for 5 years. He was a founding Board Member of Environmental Charter Schools, an organization that addresses the needs of underserved students in South Los Angeles. He served as President of the Board of that organization as it grew from one school with 100 students to three schools with over 750 students.
In 2012, Mr. Quiter retired from his position of Chair of the Board of Cuningham Group Architecture and moved to the Bay Area to be closer to his family. He recently completed a new home, a contemporary LEED Platinum structure in the Berkeley hills, for himself and his wife.