Learning institutions are workshops for transforming the future of our world. Guided by this conviction, we approach educational design equipped with the best evidence available to increase learning and enhance student outcomes. We have a wide base of experience, from specialized laboratories, to state-of-the-art libraries, to vibrant student life centers, to active-learning classrooms. Our education-focused professionals view each project as an opportunity to help schools attract the brightest students and faculty—spaces that inspire creativity, invite exploration, and transform futures.
Elissa L. Kellett, AIA, LEED AP BD+C
Global Higher Education Practice Leader
Elissa Kellett collaborates with design and planning experts to lead and grow the firm’s global higher education practice. She has devoted a 36-year career to helping colleges and universities envision and realize capital projects that further their mission and reflect the unique character of their institutions.
Elissa's expertise is comprehensive, covering all phases of planning, visioning, design, construction and post-occupancy evaluation across the continuum of higher education, including community colleges, four-year institutions and graduate programs.
A registered architect in Virginia, West Virginia, Maryland and Washington, D.C., Elissa has accreditation in sustainable design and a Master of Architecture degree from the University of Michigan.
She shares her expertise through mentorship, publications and presentations via professional organizations, such as the Society for College and University Planning (SCUP), American Association of Colleges and Universities (AACU) and Tradeline.
Joe has focused his career on the design, vision and creation of higher learning environments for state and collegiate institutions, as well as performing arts, library and academic research facilities. He brings a passion and talent for transforming buildings through design and planning innovations. Joe is also very experienced in designing for and collaborating with the National Park Service and various state-level historic preservation commissions.
Erin P. Froschheiser, RA, NCARB, LEED AP
Associate, Project Manager
With more than 16 years of experience, Erin stands out to LEO A DALY’s clients for her service-oriented style of leadership and successful track record of delivering complex projects. She believes wholeheartedly that today’s facilities should meet the needs of their users, while maintaining adaptability.
Erin’s wide-ranging experience informs her ability to foster consensus among stakeholders. She has led numerous projects, including new and renovated university athletic and academic facilities, rehabilitation of century-old commercial buildings and new, luxury apartments such as those in the Capitol District. Her projects have received awards from Omaha by Design and the Preservation Association of Lincoln.
Cindy A. McCleary, AIA, NCARB, LEED AP
Cindy has focused her 18-year career on public and educational architecture. An expert in visioning and consensus building, she is particularly adept at guiding and facilitating special interest groups, public sector clients and multiple stakeholders to realize strategically driven results. Her experience as a programmer and planner of public and academic libraries, civic and educational facilities, city halls, police, fire and community buildings, courts, law enforcement and police-forensic facilities has earned her a reputation for advanced thinking and strategically-driven design processes.
Kristi M. Nohavec, PE, AIA, LEED AP
Market Sector Leader - Education
Kristi is one of 14 individuals in Nebraska dual licensed as a professional engineer and a registered architect, and she holds PE licenses in 10 states. Considering her own love of learning, it should come as no surprise that she leads the Education market sector for our Omaha studio. Her expertise is often called upon for projects nationwide, and her ability to apply an architect’s creativity while solving engineering problems leads to many innovations for our clients.
In 2016, the University of Nebraska-Lincoln’s Architecture Friends Association named Kristi Outstanding Alumni of the Year. She has earned the Distinguished Service Award from the American Institute of Architects and been recognized as Engineer of the Year by the Eastern Chapter of the Nebraska Society of Professional Engineers.
Kristi's work has been published in CITYLAB and her leadership helps drive innovation across our Education portfolio. She spends much of her free time volunteering in the Omaha community, including mentoring women leaders through the American Legion Auxiliary.
Douglas M. Peters, AIA, LEED AP
Senior Design Architect
Doug is an experienced project designer in religious, educational and historic facilities, and has a solid background in master planning, architectural design and architectural illustration. He consistently receives commendations from clients for his ability to discern the needs and wants of communities impacted by his design and to build consensus among members.
Doug uses a highly visual exploration process to study multiple design solutions quickly, assisting the client in evaluating concepts and accelerating the design decision process.
Mark is a licensed architect with more than 35 years of experience working with public and private higher education clients. He is passionate about creating collaborative, creative designs that meet evolving student, staff, and community needs. With expertise in master planning and project programming, he works to blend new technology with existing campuses and create inspiring student spaces, including students life centers, dormitories, libraries, and technical classrooms.
Alex Ward is an award-winning architect with more than 26 years of experience designing institutional, commercial and residential projects in the United States and abroad. His designs emphasize a refinement of details, bold expression of materials and the creative integration of lighting and landscape. As Director of Design for the Los Angeles office, his responsibilities include the development of design from concept through construction. He is also a member of the Design Excellence Committee guiding the overall design direction of the company.
Ron is a design architect with 30 years of experience specializing in higher educational facilities. His award winning work for colleges, universities, and research institutions has earned him 18 national design awards, 48 regional design awards, and 62 local design awards. His philosophy of designing physical environments to enhance lives is the starting point and touchstone for each of his designs. Ron strives to understand what issues will impact individuals – whether it is space limitations, sustainability practices, materials or flexible use. His portfolio reflects his use of sustainable strategies, and includes two recently LEED Platinum certified education projects: Florida Atlantic University College of Engineering and Computer Sciences and Florida Gulf Coast University Academic 7.