Brenda So

Brenda So

Los Angeles, CA, US

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I am an architectural designer with 8+ years of professional experience. I grew up in Phoenix, Arizona, and moved to California to attend USC School of Architecture. During my education I interned at Orcutt|Winslow in Phoenix, Arizona, and Gruen Associates. After my five year B. Arch program, I stayed in the Los Angeles area and started working for Gruen Associates full-time followed by another few years at Montalba Architects, Inc. At both firms I gained experience in all the phases of an architectural project from schematic design to construction administration. I worked in different scales and types of projects from retail to urban design. I'm confident in my drawing, design, and 3D modeling skills. On my own time I love to paint and graphic design. 


SO|DA inc., Los Angeles, CA, US, Project Manager / Job Captain

Working with my twin sister and her husband, I currently work on adaptive reuse buildings and commercial restaurant spaces within the Los Angeles area. I have gained experience working with developers, learned more about the planning process for commercial buildings, and have a better understanding of the relationships between Landlord and Tenants.

Sep 2016 - current

Montalba Architects, Inc., Santa Monica, CA, US, Project Manager / Job Captain

I started working with Montalba Architects, Inc, as a Junior Designer working on high end retail projects. After a year I moved up to a Project Manager position, managing and producing documents for Nobu restaurants. In my years at Montalba Architects, I worked and completed projects such as Ports 1961, Elizabeth and James, Carolina Herrera, and Duty Free stores at LAX. I enjoyed working in a fast pace office and had the opportunity to travel to many cities.

Mar 2013 - Aug 2016

Gruen Associates, Los Angeles, CA, US, Junior Designer

Junior Designer working in production of construction documents and construction administration. I started out working as an intern in 2008 for the Pacific Design Center Red Building helping with construction admin. I moved onto working on a high end residential home and other urban planning projects. During my last two years at Gruen, I worked mainly on high end retail such as Dior, Bvlgari, Louis Vuitton, and Equinox Fitness Center. I helped make 3D models and physical models as well. Also, I coordinated lunch presentations with reps and was the librarian for the office sample library.

Nov 2009 - Dec 2012

Orcutt|Winslow Partnership, Phoenix, AZ, US, Intern

During my first two years at USC, I interned for Orcutt|Winslow in the summer. There I worked with the hospitality and education teams. I worked on 3D modeling and renderings. I also worked in programming sessions and interior design mood boards. It was a great experience because the project manager I worked under took me to client meetings and on-site project visits to get a better perspective of the reality of a project.

May 2006 - May 2007


University of Southern California (USC), Los Angeles, CA, US, BArch, School of Architecture

At the School of Architecture at USC, I spent five years learning the basics of architectural design, engineering and business. The first three years were regular studio classes working on projects such as housing, theatres, and a boathouse. My fourth and fifth year topic studios were focused on an eco park on Catalina Island and a large urban project in downtown Los Angeles. The summer before my fifth year I studied abroad with the American Academy in China. We traveled to India, South Korea, and China. There we studied ancient and contemporary architecture, as well as urban studies.

Aug 2004 - May 2009

Areas of Specialization