SOM mourns the loss of Managing Director Rod Garrett, who died unexpectedly on June 27, 2014, while visiting Chicago. A highly respected architect and colleague, Garrett was responsible for the day-to-day work and operations of the firm's office in Washington, D.C. His varied and distinguished design work was concentrated in civic and government buildings, primarily for the federal government. In 2013, he was elevated to fellowship in the American Institute of Architects (AIA).
Garrett was a graduate of Oklahoma State University, where he received a Bachelor of Architecture in 1983 and a Master of Architecture in 1985. He joined SOM’s Washington office in 1986 and was successively promoted to Associate, Associate Director, and Director.
Garrett was the senior designer of many important SOM projects, including the U.S. Census Bureau Headquarters; U.S. Patent & Trademark Office Headquarters; FBI Metropolitan Washington Field Office; U.S. Embassy in Ottawa; U.S. Department of State, Standard Embassy Design Program; National Museum of American History, Smithsonian Institution; C4ISR Center of Excellence; and National Defense University, Lincoln Hall.
Garrett led SOM’s Government Design Group and collaborated with numerous people across offices. His long association with the National Capital Region and his irrepressible interest in the region's buildings and public realm made him an expert in the built environment of Washington and its environs. He was generous with his knowledge in collegial and academic settings, lecturing and serving on juries for AIA DC, Catholic University, Howard University, and The National Building Museum’s program for public school enrichment.
Garrett was a convivial colleague who was extremely dedicated to his craft. He is survived by his wife Rachel Garrett, and their two sons, Benjamin and Nathaniel. Donations can be made in Garrett's honor to an educational fund established in his name.
The Rodney E. Garrett Children Educational Fund
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