AIA Redwood Empire Perspective Series


12:00 pm - 2:00 pm


Perspectives: Women Leaders in Architecture, Design, Business & Beyond

2.0 LUs

As Gabrielle Bullock, FAIA remarked during AIA’s webinar The State of Equity in Architecture, “I see this as a real cosmic reset given what we have been dealing with. The health pandemic and the racial injustices that have been spotlighted the last couple of months. It is now or never to have this conversation. It is impacting our society. Our design.”

Our local panel discussion will build on this idea and will highlight a number of women leaders in the North Bay and their journey and shared experiences to the top of their profession. Our panelists come from a variety of firm types, serve in a variety of senior management roles, and are not all architects. Their voices are unique and their stories are important…to be heard by all people, regardless of gender.

Moderated by Je’Nen Chastain, MBA, Assoc. AIA.

Je’Nen Chastain is the founder of Apostrophe Consulting, a management consultancy serving professionals in architecture and the creative fields. With expertise in marketing, leadership development, and strategic planning, Je’Nen is passionate about developing next-generation practice leaders. She is a Co-Host of Practice Disrupted, a brand-new podcast by Practice of Architecture and Gābl Media, exploring the changing nature of practice. A recipient of the 2017 AIA Associates Award, Je’Nen holds both a B.Arch. and an MBA. She previously spent a decade in the Bay Area, collaborating with award-winning firms in their design, marketing, and business development efforts.


The following panelists will share their perspective, experience and insights:

Jessie Whitesides, Architect, NCARB, Principal, Asquared Studios Inc.  

Stacey Walker, IIDA, Principal, TLCD Architecture

Debra McGuire, Architect, Associate Principal, QKA

Christine Talbot, PLA, Principal, Quadriga Landscape Architecture

Register in advance for this meeting:

After registering, you will receive a confirmation email containing information about joining the meeting.


Jessie Whitesides

Jessie has over 25 years experience as a designer and an Architect. As one of the principals of Asquared Studios she brings an enormous talent for simple and elegant design. She specializes in Winery, Hospitality, Agricultural, Restaurant, Single and Multi-Family Residential, and Mixed Use design. Jessie has traveled extensively around the world and enjoys working with a diverse group of clients and professionals. She has been working and living in Northern California for the past 20 years and has found a passion not only for the Historic California Barn  Vernacular (to which her design sensibilities offer a modern and contemporary flair), but also for the Modern + Minimalistic Aesthetic. Her experience has taught her to be an exceptional project leader, always striving to maximize the opportunity for projects to be completed on time and on budget.



Stacey Walker

As the Interior Design Principal at TLCD Architecture, Stacey’s approach balances an inherent sense of how design influences peoples’ use and enjoyment of space with the technical execution skills which make for a successful built environment. Her early experience with complex projects on the East Coast influenced her commitment to design excellence, which she brings to a wide range of project types at TLCD. She brings an enthusiasm for listening and creating quality interior environments that are warm and welcoming, and support the inhabitant experience. Stacey takes the same human-centric approach to leadership, helping to shape growth and expansion by fostering professional development opportunities for the entire TLCD family.


Debra McGuire

After graduating from California Polytechnic State University, San Luis Obispo with a Bachelor of Architecture, Debra spent several years in the Central Valley and Mount Shasta, California, before moving to Santa Rosa. Debra started at Quattrocchi Kwok Architects in 2000 and became an Associate in 2010, working as a project architect for several educational projects over the years, but also providing firm-wide support for technical knowledge and office standards.  In July 2019 she became Director of Practice which allows her to fully dedicate time to staff education and mentorship. She has been an integral part of the QKA management team as the firm continues to grow in size and expand their reputation for thoughtful and innovative design of K-12 facilities.


Christine Talbot

With over 20 years’ experience in design, management, and implementation of both public and private landscapes Christine’s passion for design is rooted in making every day experiences more livable and more engaging. With a deep interest in creating safe, beautiful and functional spaces, Christine has been integral in the design and management of a variety of project types and sizes ranging from the rehabilitation of public parks and schools to master plan and infill developments. As President of Quadriga, Christine strives to create a supportive and engaging workplace, while continuing the firm’s history of community involvement and engagement. Some recent projects include Kunde Hall and Lindley Center for STEM at SRJC, Caritas Village in Santa Rosa and, co-creating Midtown Fourth a neighborhood traffic calming effort in Santa Rosa.




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