"Creativity oozes out of his fingertips." That's what colleagues say about James McNeal.
James has an ability to approach each project as a brand new opportunity, starting with a conversation with his client about their dreams, and building ideas throughout the process. The process? Clients get sketches at each stage, so they know exactly what's coming up. No surprises, no stress. No other Architect walks side by side with clients like James McNeal does; no other Architect communicates so well through sketches done right at meetings. You'll start thinking about your project three dimensionally, just as James sees it all along.
Prior to founding James McNeal Architecture and Design in 2015, James was Partner and Vice President of Design for Charles Cudd De Novo. Prior to joining Charles Cudd De Novo, he was Principal Architect and owner of De Novo Architects in downtown Minneapolis, Minnesota.
James McNeal Architecture and Design has numerous projects in Minnesota, Florida, Colorado and is certified to work throughout the United States.
Heather has an associates degree in Architecture from University of Toledo. Worked in Ohio with Horne and King Architects on residential, small commercial projects and municipal building. She also owned her own residential deign business where she designed custom homes and additions.
Heather is passionate about listening to clients and helping compiling ideas, needs and wants. “I love seeing client's face when their dreams becomes a reality!” she says. She is excited to be part of the JMAD Team where there is so much creative energy and collaboration.
She moved to MN in 2011, loves being outside paddling kayaks, riding bikes, and having fun with her kids!
Angela Liesmaki is a design professional with more than five years of experience in commercial and residential architecture. Having worked on a variety of projects types ranging from office remodels, to custom homes, to international airports, she is captivated by inspirational, impactful and creative design. She thoroughly enjoys the process and collaborating with clients and team members to create a well-conceived design that expresses each client’s personality, fulfills their aspirations and enhances their daily lives. Her skills include conceptual design, visualization, hand drawing, 3D computer modeling and rendering.
Angela attended the U of MN College of Design receiving her Masters of Architecture and St. Olaf College receiving a Degree in Studio Art and Mathematics. With a passion for artistic design, she has studied and continues to practice photography, painting, drawing, sculpture, art history, wood burning and more, each of which have influenced her design process and aesthetic eye. She enjoys traveling, concerts, piano, cooking and is a huge fan of dogs. She gives back to her community by mentoring design students, reviewing presentations at the College of Design and volunteering in art programs.
“Architecture provides the opportunity to be creative; to express concepts, values and personalities. It is a visual art that has an impact on the daily lives of each person experiencing the design. It should provide a sense of comfort and familiarity that resonates with the user. At the end of the day, when someone pulls up in their driveway and enters their home, they should feel a sigh of relief that they have made it to their home where they feel safe and can build memories during each season of their life.”
For over a decade, Paul Karlson specialized in residential architecture, combining his technical and artistic experience into one craft. He also drafted hospital and school projects in Madagascar and India, retail stores around the U.S., and civic and multifamily projects around Minnesota.
Starting out as a custom furniture maker's assistant, he proceeded to study at North Dakota State University, the Architectural Association in London, and Iowa State University, achieving the A.I.A. Certificate of Merit, a Masters in Architecture, and a Masters in Community and Regional Planning.
Paul also worked for the U.S. Government in Poland as a Peace Corps grant writer, winning E.U. funds for 13 port cities' redevelopment plans, and for Poland's first eco-education park.
As a college adjunct instructor, he taught a wealth of architecture and interior design courses, earning high student ratings at Brown College, Dakota County Technical College, Minneapolis Community Technical College, and Century College.
Sometimes you can see Paul performing in the Minnesota Orchestra's choir or serving on boards for public interest organizations in the Twin Cities.
In Mark’s first meeting with JMAD, Jim expressed that his desire is to do nothing but projects that were inspiring and artful. This was right up Mark’s alley due to his background as a professional woodworker and architectural designer. He has a passion for craftsmanship community repair and sustainability as well.
“I’ve been finding inspiration in the question of “Do we work for our houses or do our houses work for us?” He looks forward to seeing however culture answers this?
Laura Tracy is the Office Manager at JMAD. With more than five years of experience in the home remodeling industry, she has a variety of skills in design, organization and marketing that lends itself well to this industry and she has developed a love for helping people bring their dream home to a reality. “I fully believe that it takes a village to create a unique individual space and I love being the go-to person behind the scenes helping productivity happen. The more efferent we are and the better tools we have help us to be the best we can be for our clients”
Laura attended the University of Wisconsin La Crosse and now holds a bachelor’s degree in Theatrical Design and Management. Her love for design and creativity paired with her organizational and leadership skills make for a great combination to help others succeed in their creative endeavors. Once the remodeling industry got ahold of her, it became clear that her variety of skills in design, photography, marketing, social media, management, sales, and communications have made her position here with JMAD a great fit. “I love working with a creative company that strives to make their clients happy, employees happy and can have fun along the way.”
“Creativity comes from Trust. Trust your instincts and you’ll inspire.” – Rita Mae Brown
Sher McNeal is the bookkeeper for James McNeal Architecture and Design. She has an extensive background in corporate business with an MBA from Colorado University. In addition to her position with JMAD, Sher runs a hypnotherapy business, is a minister and loves to spend time with her two Cavalier King Charles.