I Am AIA:
Born in Sweden, Ola brings a unique, international perspective to FSi. He joined the firm in 2012, becoming a Principal in 2019. He specializes in public works projects like community centers and recreational facilities. He combines engineering and project management expertise with a passion for sustainability and community that contributes to FSi’s values and priorities. Ola also leads FSi’s DEA efforts as chair of the internal committee. His collaborative approach helps projects run smoothly and adds to FSi’s unique work culture and strong relationships with clients and building owners.
WHY DID YOU JOIN AIA SEATTLE?
I think it’s important to support organizations that are out there promoting our industry. As an engineer, I feel that I should play a part in supporting architects. AIA brings important subjects into focus and we learn from them. I love collaborating and being part of those conversations.
WHAT IS THE VALUE OF AIA TO YOU?
Relationships with people are the most important part of what I do. The people I meet through AIA and the long-term collaborations we create are what make my job fun. I’ve learned a lot from talking to people with different backgrounds and perspectives. We all need to be part of the conversations like the ones they have in the AIA culture cohort. It’s helped me become more aware of diversity in real practice. It’s helped FSi become a more diverse workplace. I get energy from those conversations.
WHAT RELATIONSHIPS HAVE YOU CREATED?
I’ve met so many people through my participation in AIA. I get to strengthen the relationships I already have, which is a great benefit. And I get to meet people I would never come across in the usual course of doing business. Both of those things are important to me, and to FSi.
WHAT PROJECT ARE YOU WORKING ON NOW?
Wow! So many projects. As a principal at FSi, I touch a big percentage of our work. Right now I’m pretty excited about the civic complex for the City of Monroe, the revamp of the Seminar 1 Building at Evergreen, and the Way Station for Unity Northwest, up in Bellingham. Each of these projects is a chance to have real impacts on people’s lives. This is why I do what I do. We create change in the world by changing a community.
HOW DO YOU EXPLAIN WHAT YOU DO FOR A LIVING?
I lead teams that create environments that support people’s health, well-being, and happiness. Every day, I get to work on projects that make a difference in somebody’s life, whether it’s supportive housing, healthcare, a community center, or a transfer and recycling station. It’s satisfying at a really deep level.
IF YOU COULD SUM UP YOUR OUTLOOK ON LIFE IN A BUMPER STICKER, WHAT WOULD IT SAY?
“Keep growing, sharing, and finding joy in the journey.” I guess that’s kind of a long bumper sticker, but I think those are all important to building a great life for myself and the people around me