Reflecting recent growth and an evolving global presence, the architecture and urban design firm Cooper Robertson has announced the elevation of two architects to partner: Erin Flynn R.A., LEED AP, an experienced practitioner known for award-winning cultural and museum work, and Mike Aziz, AIA, LEED AP, recognized as an expert on urban design, campus planning, and computational design.
With these appointments to its most senior decision-making team, Cooper Robertson empowers a new generation of emerging leaders at a noteworthy moment in the firm’s history. Building on a successful record of transforming cities, creating cultural landmarks, and crafting memorable, sustainable and resilient places, in 2019 the firm celebrated its 40th anniversary and expanded its staff, while launching valuable data-driven research initiatives and taking on important new institutional, educational, and mixed-use commercial commissions.
Recent wins for Cooper Robertson include prestigious cultural projects such as a new master plan for Pennsylvania’s Brandywine Conservancy & Museum of Art, and notable international work such as an expanded campus for the Lyford Cay International School in Nassau, Bahamas. The new partners Aziz and Flynn have also led the firm’s involvement in numerous publications, lectures and special projects such as the ongoing PROJECT NY smart city mapping platform, the American Institute of Architects (AIA) New York Chapter’s Net-Zero Neighborhoods initiative, and emerging research into new universal design strategies for cultural facilities.
According to Cooper Robertson’s managing partner, Donald Clinton, AIA, MRAIC, LEED AP, the new roles for Flynn and Aziz reflect an emerging diversity of design and planning work as well as an evolving presence in the fields of architecture and urban design. “We’re proud to say that Erin Flynn and Mike Aziz represent the next generation of leadership at Cooper Robertson,” says Clinton, who is frequently cited for expertise in complex urban transformations. “Respected by clients, peers, and colleagues, they are deeply experienced practitioners and mentors, able to meld technical expertise and managerial skill with a spiritof innovation that pushes our work forward in meaningful ways.”
In their elevation to partnership, Flynn, Cooper Robertson’s Director of Architecture, and Aziz, the firm’s Director of Urban Design, now join currentpartners and directors including Clinton; Bruce Davis, AIA, LEED AP; and John Kirk, AIA; Scott Newman, FAIA; and Brian Shea, FAIA. “As we look to the future and explore new ideas for shaping the built environment,” says Clinton, “Erin Flynn and Mike Aziz’s leadership and perspectives will be instrumental.”
Adding to the announcement, Cooper Robertson has also released information about the two individuals:
Erin Flynn, RA, LEED AP, Partner
With over 20 years of experience in cultural and museum work, Erin Flynn is regarded as an expert on planning, design, and programming strategies for urban museums serving diverse patrons. A trusted advisor for institutional leaders nationwide, she has been instrumental on such notable commissions as the Whitney Museum of American Art; the Fowler Museum at UCLA Planning Study; the award-winning Gateway Arch Museum in St. Louis; the upcoming Studio Museum in Harlem; a museum expansion at Princeton University; as well as the recent renovation work at New York City’s Museum of Modern Art.
As Cooper Robertson’s Director of Architecture, Flynn has also played an important role in mentoring and managing project teams while also supporting business development for the firm’s cultural and museum practice. She also manages quality control and systems research, develops and advances the implementation of building technology in the firm’s work, and ensures best practices in design and management of projects.
In her new role as a partner, Flynn joins Cooper Robertson’s management committee, helping to set firm-wide strategy and chart new paths for growth. A LEED-accredited professional, Flynn is a registered architect in New York State, and holds a Bachelor of Architecture from the University of Oregon.
Mike Aziz, AIA, LEED AP BD+C, Partner
An expert on large-scale planning efforts, smart city strategies, and waterfront revitalization, Mike Aziz’s background includes over 15 years of award-winning work in urban design, campus planning, and computational design. Named to Building Design + Construction magazine’s prestigious 40 Under 40 list in 2019, Aziz has been instrumental in advancing many of Cooper Robertson’s most important recent projects as the firm’s Director of Urban Design. Notable work includes a new master plan for a major university in the Mid-Atlantic region; Riverton, a 425-acre brownfield redevelopment anticipated to be the largest mixeduse development project in the NY/NJ region; master planning efforts for Longwood University in Virginia; a master plan for Georgia State University in Atlanta; a large-scale mixed-use development on the Brooklyn waterfront; and an upcoming computational design study for Net-Zero neighborhoods in New York City.
Known as a leader in the East Coast planning community, Aziz serves on several advisory groups focused on waterfront planning, water quality, and resilience. He has been a critic and guest lecturer at Yale University, Columbia University, the University of Pennsylvania and New York Institute of Technology, and is also author of the 2010 book Reshaping Gentrification: An Urban Design Proposal for the Redevelopment of Columbia Heights. In his new role as a partner, Aziz joins Erin Flynn on Cooper Robertson’s management committee. A graduate of the University of Maryland and Savannah College of Art and Design, he is a registered architect in New York and a LEED Accredited Professional.