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Eppstein Uhen Architects Continues Leadership Transition

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Greg Uhen, Current CEO Announces New Leaders

MILWAUKEE, WI, July 21st , 2021Greg Uhen, Eppstein Uhen Architect’s (EUA) current CEO is announcing leadership team transitions, effective October 1st , with Rich Tennessen moving to CEO, Kristin Dufek named as President and John Chapman as Vice President. Uhen will remain on the Board of Directors through 2023.

EUA is Milwaukee’s largest architecture firm with locations in Milwaukee and Madison, WI and Denver, CO and this marks the next phase of long-term transition planning that has been in the works for over 17 years. As EUA continues to grow and geographically expand, plural leadership becomes even more important to the success of the organization.

Regarding the planned transition Tennessen said: “Many architecture firms get tripped up on succession planning, we’ve been planning this for a long time and it’s fulfilling to get past the pandemic, to get to this point. Our leadership team includes more than just a few people, it’s our Practice Team, Principals, Associates and other leaders within the firm that are positioning us for a positive future.”

Rich Tennessen’s move to CEO comes after serving as EUA’s President for the past 10 years. He will continue to be integrally involved in leading EUA’s mission and vision, also leading overall strategy for future growth of the firm. Regarding this move Greg Uhen stated, “I’ve known Rich for a long time, and when I hired him over 20 years ago, I knew the day would come when he would lead this firm. His perspective and unique qualities complemented my leadership style and influenced our firm immensely. He is everything I’ve expected and more. I couldn’t be more confident in his ability to lead EUA and take us to new heights.”

In the promotion to President, Dufek will be taking over EUA’s day-to-day operations, working closely with Tennessen and Chapman, as well as utilizing the skillsets of other leaders across the firm. Newly announced CEO Rich Tennessen said, “With this transition, I’m the most excited about recognizing Kristin’s impact and influence at EUA. She has shown time and time again that she has what it takes, through hard work and influence, so I know she is going to shine in this role.”

Dufek joined EUA 19 years ago as a Healthcare Architect and Planner and helped jumpstart EUA’s presence in the Healthcare market. During her tenure at EUA she transitioned to Healthcare Studio Director, and most recently served as Vice President where she has been involved in various facets of leadership within the organization. In her role as President, she will have expanded exposure to EUA clients, core markets and geographies, and increased visibility within the communities where EUA serves.

Dufek reflected, “I was drawn to EUA almost 20 years ago by how grounded the firm felt, with such a solid reputation for design and business integrity. I chose to grow my career here because of the caliber of the people I work with.” When asked about the future, she commented, “EUA succeeds because of our exceptional people who love the practice of architecture and who trust and challenge each other, which translates into the way we serve our clients. We will continue to be the go-to architecture firm that solves complex problems, really well. As President, I’m excited to do what I love to do, to engage with clients and help our talented team members grow in their own careers.”

When asked about EUA, long-term client Catherine Jacobson, President and CEO of Froedtert Health said, “EUA is one of our most important partners helping us to extend our mission and increase our impact in the community. In life and in business, so much comes down to the people who you work with to solve issues. Rich and Kristin genuinely care and move us forward together. They are both thoughtful and authentic which are great qualities to have leading a company with whom we partner.” Uhen will be transitioning from his current design leadership role, selling a majority of his controlling shares in the company, and moving to a more advisory board position for the upcoming years; still staying active in the Milwaukee community and the Third Ward. He plans to continue leading the design through completion for his current projects, including the Fiserv Forum and Deer District master planning, Komatsu Mining Corporation Headquarters, Rite Hite World Headquarters, and the Marriott Tribute Hotel in the Third Ward, among other current projects.

Backfilling Uhen’s leadership in Design, Chapman will be taking an enhanced role in influencing design across the firm. He will maintain his active involvement with clients as well as expanding his reach outside Madison to all geographic locations within the firm. Regarding this occasion, Uhen stated, “It is really rewarding to get to the point of my career where I can now watch EUA from a different vantage point. I will always stay connected with EUA, doing what I can to help the firm grow. I’m looking forward to this next phase of my life, to spend time seeing the world and enjoying time with friends and family.

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