Founding partner and principal Lisa Folkins is an urban planner with 30 years experience. She supports the integration of architecture, landscape architecture, and site planning to create vibrant communities. She understands the interplay of buildings, natural landscape and infrastructure to create livable, engaging spaces that encourage people to interact. Lisa is committed to sustainable practices and incorporates these into the design of master plans to create healthy vibrant communities, while preserving the natural features of the site.
Alex Shkerich is a principal and founding partner of Communita Atelier. He is both a skilled manager and thoughtful practitioner. In addition to being an experienced and accomplished designer, Alex contributes a highly-refined technical expertise to all Communita Atelier’s work -- ensuring creative, sound, and constructible solutions to complex design challenges. His acumen for detail carries over to an intuitive, thoughtful approach to integrated, large-scale site design and implementation.
Lara Normand is a graduate of the MLA program at the University of Washington. Lara’s professional work has encompassed urban streetscape design, specialized healthcare facility gardens, rooftop terraces and residential site planning and design. She has in-depth knowledge of and appreciation for plants and soil technology. Outside the office, she dedicates time to volunteer groups such as the Rainier Valley Food Bank and Bicycle Advisory Board.
Noelle’s experience executing art installations throughout the world deeply informs her work as a landscape architect. She brings craft and resourcefulness to solving design and construction issues. She has worked on a broad variety of multidisciplinary projects including private development, senior living, academic campuses, sensory gardens, transportation facilities, art installations, and urban open space. Integrating far-reaching goals into construction details reflects Noelle’s deep knowledge of materials, water-efficient and native planting, social sensitivity, and project efficiency. Motivated by nature in our urban environment, she is passionate about cycling, running, and gardening.
Mellyana Kumala earned her BLA in Indonesia and her MLA in Germany. Her love of travel and experiencing new cultures informs her thoughtful approach to place-making and creative responses to social aspects of design. With extensive experience designing community plans and site designs, Mellyana brings a holistic vision that brings people, site conditions, and ecological considerations to the forefront. She is also proficient in creating precise and efficient project documentation that cleanly communicates designs.