Women in Architecture Award GSBS Architects “Firm of the Year” / by SHOKO SMITH


Women In Architecture, Salt Lake Chapter, has named GSBS Architects Firm of the Year for the second time. WIASLC  has a  singular goal of gender parity in the field of architecture through three core strategies: Community, Mentoring, and Advocating.,  GSBS Architects was selected for excellence in creating a forward-thinking, flexible and employee-oriented work environment in firms with more than 20 employees. The firm first won the award in 2016.

The criteria for judging were career development, flexibility, communication, benefits, diversity and inclusion, and firm amenities.

Forty-eight percent of the GSBS staff is women, and are represented at every level from board member to the newest interns. Employees are from all over the world, including people from many U.S. States and eleven countries.     The firm practices in five different disciplines – architecture, planning, landscape architecture, interior design, and economic consulting – are housed in an open-office environment, which encourages collaboration and knowledge sharing between disciplines.  


GSBS offers many career development opportunities for employees at every level. The firm also encourages mentorship through small “studios”designed to answer questions, give assistance, and provide personal advocacy.    

“GSBS Architects embraces diversity in all its forms,” said firm principal and board member Valerie Nagasawa. “By expanding the contribution of women and welcoming people of varied backgrounds and nationalities, we’re making GSBS a more vibrant place to work, and gaining a competitive edge.”

Interior Designer Jill Miles has benefited from the firm's flexibility. “I have always appreciated that “GSBS has been willing to accommodate a non-traditional work schedule to enable me work and also take care of my family,” Jill said.  Arezoo  Sharp,  Associate AIA, agrees. “The flexibility GSBS allows employees to have in their work hours, and ability to work from home has helped me immensely in keeping up with my career while having and raising my kids.”