Alumni portfolios

  • GEDC Affordable Family Housing, San Francisco, CA.
    GEDC Affordable Family Housing, San Francisco, CA.
  • Joseph Jensen Water Treatment Plant, Granada Hills, CA.
    Joseph Jensen Water Treatment Plant, Granada Hills, CA.
  • Muni Metro East Light Rail Maintenance Facility, San Francisco, CA.
    Muni Metro East Light Rail Maintenance Facility, San Francisco, CA.
  • Cecil Williams Glide Transitional Housing, San Francisco, CA.
    Cecil Williams Glide Transitional Housing, San Francisco, CA.
  • Drawing of streetscape in Jeitou, China.
    Drawing of streetscape in Jeitou, China.
  • Drawing of gate in Jeitou, China.
    Drawing of gate in Jeitou, China.

Rod Henmi

Biography 

Rod Henmi (MArch/MUD82) believes passionately that the highest quality of design should be committed to improving the lives of the underserved and enhancing the civic realm. For this reason, as a practicing architect for over thirty years, he has focused on improving design quality for two underserved building types—affordable housing and industrial architecture. He has completed over 1,700 units of affordable housing and numerous water/wastewater treatment and maintenance facilities. Henmi's buildings demonstrate a key principle: elegance from necessity. This is the idea of pushing hard on the constituent requirements of program, process, site, structure, climate, and community involvement in a creative manner that melds expression with rigor.

Henmi has an extensive academic career, as well, having taught at Washington University and UC Berkeley as well as serving as a guest critic at multiple universities. He co-authored with Iain Fraser a seminal book on the relationship between drawing and design: Envisioning Architecture: An Analysis of Drawing. He is also active as an advocate for the advancement of minorities and women in architecture through his involvement with the National Organization of Minority Architects (NOMA). Until 2008, he partnered with Michael Willis, FAIA (BA73, Arch; MArch/MSW76) at Michael Willis Architects as principal and director of design. Henmi now serves as director of design at HKIT Architects in Oakland, California. The buildings illustrated in the photos were completed with Michael Willis Architects during his time there. He also includes two travel drawings from China to illustrate his continual use of hand drawing and his advocacy for its importance.