Starting as a one man show, his talent and passion has attracted others to want to work on his team. Only two years later, the senior architect now has a team of three other architects and an interior designer, with two more potential openings this year to continue work in his thriving studio.
“His commitment to providing the best service to our clients and mentoring his team, not just in Orlando, but Jacksonville as well, truly illustrates the strength of his character, and I believe we are all better architects for having Jeff as part of the RS&H team,” said Vice President Jonathan Cantor.
Recognizing his talents, RS&H nurtured and supported Jeff in creating an environment where the employees can focus on collaborative design and provide tools to help them grow, such as project management, presentation, and public speaking workshops, to name a few.
While currently the studio is located in a conference room deemed “The Architect’s Den” by their fellow engineers, there are plans to upgrade the space, providing more furniture for collaboration.
Itzel Lozada, an architectural associate in Orlando, is part of Jeff’s team. She left her former employer to follow Jeff to RS&H because of his work ethic, professionalism, and talent.
“Being an apprentice under Jeff means you’re going to work hard because he likes to be successful in all aspects of the project, especially bringing the project within or under budget,” Itzel said.
During projects, Jeff makes a diligent effort to maintain communication and respect among his team.
Architectural associate Matt Wall in Orlando agrees that Jeff’s talent and knowledge of architectural design is the basis of why Jeff continues to do great work and be respected within RS&H. But, the reason clients and coworkers love to work with Jeff is his great attitude, Matt said.
“He always has cool, calm, and collected demeanor, no matter how busy we may be,” he added.
From Jeff’s humble perspective, he enjoys collaborating and exercising his leadership skills to help his team. He takes the time to teach younger architects about the industry because he wants everyone to always be striving to create a better patient experience with RS&H’s designs.
And it’s working. His colleagues claim he’s an excellent mentor to learn from in a field where there’s so much information to absorb and apply on a daily basis.
“The work is always going to be challenging, but there’s room to grow and succeed,” Itzel said. “But even when the work might get hectic or difficult, under Jeff’s leadership, we all get along well, which makes the work enjoyable.”
Jeff Smith received his bachelor’s in architecture from Auburn University, is a licensed architect in Florida, and is an active member of the American Institute of Architects. Jeff was recognized with the RS&H 2017 Corporate Project Manager of the Year award.