Tom Kubala, FAIA


Their life-long goal as architects has ever been to make a building that smiles; with that seemingly innocuous aim in mind, Tom Kubala and Allen Washatko began, in 1980, an architectural practice in the basement of Tom’s rented townhouse with the help of a friend’s $150 ‘microloan’. Although their studio now numbers 30 members, the grail of making living architecture has persisted, evolved, and matured. This singular desire forces one to examine the very meaning of aliveness and how it applies to the design of a building. Christopher Alexander’s latest writings, The Nature of Order series, has been required reading for the entire studio over a 15-year period. The work of ecologists, in particular, because of their emphasis on larger systems, has also helped to shape the process by which the firm engages a client and a building site.

Regenerative design has been the natural by-product of a life-seeking architectural practice.

  • Master of Architecture, University of Illinois at Champaign-Urbana

  • Bachelor of Architecture, University of Illinois, 4th year in Versailles, France at the Ecole des Beaux Arts

  • Registered Architect in the States of California, Minnesota, and Wisconsin

  • 2019 “The Integration of Modern Architecture and Engineering” Marquette School of Engineering

  • 2019 “Meaningful Space” Milwaukee School of Art and Design

  • 2018 “Color & Inner Light” Distance Lecture to ‘Building Beauty’, Sorrento, Italy

  • 2018 “In a World Where Buildings are Alive” Madison College

  • 2018 “Why Paint” Ovation Jewish Home

  • 2017 “Tracing the Organic, Finding Sullivan’s Thread in Christopher Alexander” Wade House, Greenbush, WI

  • Guest lecturer, UWM School of Architecture and Urban Planning

  • 30 year member of the Cedarburg Landmarks Commission

  • Charter member of the Ozaukee County Branch of the NAACP

  • Former President of the Cedarburg Artists Guild


First Unitarian Society: Meeting House Addition

Zhongguancun Elementary School No. 3

Schlitz Audubon Nature Center

Urban Ecology Center

Cincinnati Nature Center

John Michael Kohler Arts Center