The Legacy Award recognizes and honors a person, company or organization whose contributions have advanced the Interior Design profession and enriched Interior Design in Oregon. They show exemplified traits with values held by the IIDA Oregon Chapter, including advocacy, mentorship, design innovation and sustainable leadership. Congratulations to the 2019 winner of the Legacy Award: Craig Norman! Learn more about Craig in his video feature:
Film credit: Videos filmed and edited by Bryn Silverman.
Name: Craig Norman
Appellations: Principal, LEED AP
Place of Work: GBD Architects
Design Leader: Craig Norman is one of GBD’s lead principals and has been involved in designing and building impeccable spaces in Oregon, as well as California, Washington and Colorado for over forty years. His background as a licensed architect along with a detailed, thoughtful eye for interior design, sets him in a different class of designer. In addition to his decades as a designer, he is also a strong leader, advocate and mentor in the Portland design community.
Craig’s early career and experience at GBD lead him to start his own architectural firm, Graham Eberle Norman, in 1979. Owning his own firm allowed him to truly know the business aspects of the profession – from ownership, to management, to design, to production, to construction administration. His firm (now continuing to practice as GEN Architects), collaborated with GBD on The Henry Condominiums (1999-2002) in the Pearl District. This project set a new standard for luxury housing in Portland and was a perfect transition for Craig’s second career back to GBD in 2006. Since rejoining GBD, he has shared his passion for design with clients and empowering the next generation of designers to think both critically and creatively.
Throughout his career, Craig has demonstrated an innate understanding of architecture and interior design. His experience includes a diverse mix of clients and project types, including corporate and commercial, mixed-use, multi- and single- family residential, hospitality and resorts, and medical office. His exceptional ability to create comfortable, beautiful spaces is clearly demonstrated through every project he has touched. Craig excels at understanding the needs of his clients by listening to their concerns and crafting solutions that meet the vision and goals for the work. Craig is amongst the very best interior designers due to his core belief that the ideal design solutions are those born of a real response to the daily needs of the people who use the spaces.
Some of Craig’s notable IIDA/AIA award-winning projects include: Bellevue Tower, Bellevue Tower Showroom, The Casey Condominiums, The Kiln Apartments, AKQA Portland Headquarters Office and Touchmark’s Corporate Office.
Advocate: Over the years, Craig has been involved in IIDA (even serving as a board member), AIA, BOMA, IFMA and many other organizations in Portland, both directly and indirectly. Furniture vendors often seek him out for his opinions on their products, and clients instantly trust him with the design of their spaces. Craig works with all the interior design schools in Oregon and gives freely of his time. In addition to being a licensed architect, Craig long ago passed the NCIDQ exam. He encourages those in the interiors profession to complete their license exam as soon as possible.
Mentor: First and foremost, Craig is a mentor to ALL of GBD’s staff. Whether it be an interior designer, an intern architect or senior staff, Craig always takes the time to explain design intent, process and expected outcome. In the GBD mentorship program, Craig is always a mentor to prospective designers. Craig is also frequently a teacher: at GBD, at the U of O, at PSU and Oregon State, as well as at some of the non-accredited design schools. His crossover skills as an architect and interior designer make him the perfect mentor for any junior or future designer or architect.
Community Involvement: As noted above, Craig has been directly or indirectly involved in most of the major organizations related to building design. At GBD, we have a strong commitment to the community, working with local organizations such as Architects In Schools, Habitat for Humanity, State Universities, Oregon Food Bank, the City of Portland, and many, many others. Craig is always one of the first to put on a hairnet and bag carrots, or put on gloves to pull weeds. His dedication to help others extends to all aspects of the community.