People

April Hughes
AIA, NCARB, LEED AP BD+C

OWNER, MANAGING PRINCIPAL

April Hughes, AIA, NCARB, LEED AP BD+C is Owner and Managing Principal at HPZS. A graduate of the University of Kansas, in 2014 April was named AIA Chicago Dubin Family Young Architect of the Year, and in 2013 she was the recipient of the AIA Illinois John Wellborn Root Award. Hughes is leading the firm, starting a new chapter in its history as a woman-owned business by embarking on a path to design and preserve a sustainable future for the Chicago community.

April has extensive sustainable design experience, highlighted by the completion of three LEED Platinum and one Gold project. She has collaborated on the creation of the Smart Code Sustainability Module, the City of Chicago’s Public Building Commission Water Reuse Manual, as well as the recently published Living Cities: Transforming APEC Cities into Models of Sustainability by 2030.

A leader in Chicago firsts, April collaborated on the design of Chicago’s first greywater system for a single-family residence, and one of the first variable volume vent hood installations for a restaurant kitchen in the City; her work has resulted in Chicago's first net-zero single-family residence (Yannell Residence) and first net-zero commercial building (Harmony House).

April’s work has appeared in the Chicago Tribune and reviewed by architectural critic Blair Kamin, Chicago Realtor, Shore Magazine, the Living Well Network, ABC7News Chicago, Elle Décor and numerous other publications. She was a featured interview by Geoffrey Baer on WTTW-Chicago (PBS) for the Yannell Residence on “Chicago Tonight.”

April is a contributing editor to GreenBeanChicago.com. She has contributed to the best-selling Sustainable Urbanism: Urban Design with Nature to the American Institute of Architect’s Young Architects Forum (YAF) Connection Magazine. She was a finalist in the national USGBC Emerging Green Builders Design Competition (2003) as well as AIA Chicago’s ReThink/ReDesign/ReCycle Competition (2004).

Henry Zimoch
AIA, SENIOR PRINCIPAL

DIRECTOR OF HISTORIC PRESERVATION

Henry Zimoch, AIA is a Senior Principal at HPZS, and is the firm’s Director of Historic Preservation. A Chicago-area native, he graduated from the Illinois Institute of Technology in 1975 while working for the firm of Dubin, Dubin Black & Moutoussamy. Leaving DDB&M in 1978 he spent three years working for Marvin Ullman & Associates, and another three years as a field superintendent for a boutique general contracting company. Henry opened his own office in the Monadnock Building in 1984 and in 1991 joined Wilbert Hasbrouck, James Peterson, and Jay Sirirattumrong to form HPZS.

In his 23 years with the firm, Henry has continued to develop his expertise in historic preservation, renovation, and restoration through his work on some of the Midwest’s most significant historic structures. These include the People’s Savings Bank by Louis Sullivan (winning both The President’s Historic Preservation Award and the Chicago Chapter AIA Honor Award), Soldier Field, the Civil War era Seneca Grain Elevator, and the John Christian Residence by Frank Lloyd Wright.

Henry Zimoch has been a member of the AIA for over 25 years. He has written several magazine articles regarding the firm’s work. He also accepts speaking engagements that focus on the architecture and history of Chicago.

Henry is an avid collector of Frank Lloyd Wright and Prairie School books and memorabilia that extend from the sublime (the rare 1972 Japanese book by Nobumichi Akashi Frank Lloyd Wright in Imperial Hotel) to the mundane (a box of matches from the Imperial Hotel with a faux FLLW design). He also enjoys backpacking and films, including the early history and development of film technology and the movie industry.

Kelly Moynihan
AIA, NCARB, WELL AP, CPHC®, LEED GA

PRINCIPAL

Kelly Moynihan, AIA, NCARB, WELL AP, CPHC, LEED Green Associate, serves as a Principal at HPZS, a design leader that pursues the preservation and creation of carbon-free, equitable, high-performance projects.

A graduate of the University of Minnesota and Illinois Institute of Technology, she has been integrated in the Chicago Architecture Community for over ten years, making connections across communities. Kelly is a multi-faceted architect, licensed in Illinois, Minnesota, and Wisconsin, with experience in multiple project types and scales including affordable housing, K-12 and higher education, historic preservation/renovation, adaptive reuse, and commercial interiors.

Kelly is a certified Passive House Consultant and WELL Accredited Professional with an eye toward maximizing energy efficiency within building envelope assemblies and systems while creating beautiful, healthy places for humans. She has led projects that prioritize sustainability, achieving certifications such as LEED Platinum, Passive House Certified, and Living Building Challenge Petal Certification.  Prestigious accolades include awards at the national level, AIA COTE Top Ten, the highest honor for sustainability (Keller Center, University of Chicago), and regional awards from AIA Chicago (Distinguished Building, Interior Architecture), Urban Land Institute (Vision Award – Excellence in Environmentally Sensitive Design and Community Engagement), AIA Illinois (Sullivan Award, Best Project of the Year), and Landmarks Illinois (Richard H. Driehaus Preservation Award, Adaptive Reuse).

Kelly is actively involved as Co-Chair of the AIA Chicago Environment Knowledge Community, Board Member of the Passive House Alliance Chicago Chapter, and Illinois Green Alliance, developing educational programs/events focused on strategies for decarbonizing the built environment.  Kelly reveres mentorship through AIA Chicago’s Bridge and WING programs, promoting the acceleration of women in architecture leadership inside and outside HPZS.

Travel and food are her passions; she is happiest sipping rose at her Wisconsin lake cabin or twirling Bolognese in the Italian Riviera.

Natalie Hicks
AIA, NCARB, LEED AP BD+C

TECHNICAL LEADER, SENIOR ASSOCIATE

Natalie Hicks, AIA, NCARB, LEED AP BD+C is a Senior Project Manager and Technical Leader at HPZS. She completed her undergraduate and graduate degrees at the University of Illinois Urbana-Champaign, earning an MBA and Master of Architecture, Structures Option. In 2018, Natalie was in the first cohort of graduates from the AIA Chicago transFORM program, an intensive and interactive series of classes centered on skill building for the business of architecture.

Natalie began her career in structural engineering, working on multiple higher education and civic projects. After a few years, she transitioned to project architecture and eventually project management of major commercial renovations and ground-up projects. Her career project experience varies and includes healthcare, commercial office, religious buildings, institutional, and K-12, among others.

Throughout her career, Natalie has been actively involved with various professional organizations. She has been an active member of AIA in three cities. She currently sits on the Board of Directors at AIA Chicago and is a Co-Chair of the EDI Committee. Natalie previously was the Co-Chair of the Illinois Green Alliance Emerging Professionals Committee and a member of the Board of Directors. She was involved with Chicago Women in Architecture for many years, serving in various roles such as President and Membership Chair. Volunteering and giving back to the profession and communities continues to be one of her passions. She volunteers for Dress for Success, an organization which helps women to succeed in entering the workforce.

In her free time, Natalie enjoys spending quality time with friends, family, and her wonderful pets, two cats and a bunny. She loves concerts, festivals, trying new restaurants, and staying active either at the gym, on her bicycle, or a long walk through the city.

Sheila Schaefer
AIA, IIDA, LEED Green Associate

SENIOR ASSOCIATE

Sheila Schaefer, AIA, IIDA is a Senior Associate and Senior Project Manager at HPZS. A registered architect with Undergraduate and Masters of Architecture Degrees from the University of Illinois, Champaign-Urbana, as well a Professional Diploma in interior design from the Harrington Institute of Interior Design, she is HPZS’s resident registered interior design specialist.

Since joining the firm in 1994, Sheila has been the firm’s leader in projects where architecture and interior design play a significant role in project delivery. The partnership of her architectural skills with expertise in space planning, and interior finish and furniture selection has resulted in the successful completion of a number of residential and commercial projects, including several historical renovation projects where specific attention to the existing historic architectural elements have been accentuated to provide an interrelation between the existing and the new. Sheila’s work includes the adaptive re-use of an existing 150 year old barn to a community center at Vehe Farm in Deer Park, master planning and renovation of Resurrection Lutheran Church, interior design of the Fort Massac State Park’s Visitor Center and Prairie Avenue Bookshop, interior renovation and additions to several residential properties, and interior build-out of various corporate offices such as Edison Credit Union, Land America, and Eaglemark Financial Services.

During Sheila’s twenty years at HPZS, she has held a teaching position at the Harrington Institute of Interior Design for interior programming where she helped guide students in the understanding of the fundamental concepts of design, code research, and spatial planning. She is both a member of the American Institute of Architects and the International Interior Design Association.

Outside the office, Sheila has over 15 years of experience in the ceramic arts and enjoys volunteering her time at a local Chicago ceramic studio where she assists students in the execution of handmade ceramic art, specializing in wheel thrown sculpture with Art Nouveau styling. She has also actively participated in the study of martial arts with a specific focus in weaponry training and teaching.

Noelle Kramer
ASSOCIATE AIA

JUNIOR ASSOCIATE

Noelle Kramer is a Junior Project Manager | Project Architect at HPZS. She completed her undergraduate at Southern Illinois University – Carbondale with a minor in History and her graduate degree at the Illinois Institute of Technology. Her passion is influenced by her love for history and the relationship architecture has culturally.

She began her career in single-family/ multi-family residential that include student, senior, high-end, and mixed-use projects. After a few years, she transitioned to commercial interior and municipal projects that range from smaller repositioning efforts to ground up mid-rises.

In 2020, Noelle had the opportunity to be part of the AIA Chicago transFORM program. She encourages involvement in professional organizations such as AIA – Chicago (American Institute of Architects), CWA (Chicago Women in Architecture), and iNOMA (the Illinois National Organization of Minority Architects). Noelle previously served on the Board of Directors for AIA-Eastern Illinois Chapter, was Treasurer for iNOMA, and President for CWA.

When she is not volunteering, you will most likely find her cultivating her green thumb or enjoying the diverse cuisine Chicago has to offer. Pre-pandemic Noelle enjoyed traveling to one new country each year to experience the influences of the built world and observe the community developed around these buildings.

Jeremy Gentile
Associate AIA

JUNIOR ASSOCIATE

A graduate of the Illinois Institute of Technology, Jeremy is an emerging architect with a passion for the designed experience: spaces that leave a lasting impression on those who inhabit them.

With experience in high-end residential, large scale public projects, and commercial interiors, Jeremy’s true interests lie at the intersection of the three: third places. When designed well, these shared places such as hotels, cafes and community spaces leave a lasting impact.

Jeremy is also dedicated to advancing the profession, and as such serves on the AIA Chicago Board of Directors. He has worked to redefine what it means to be an emerging professional by serving on various other Boards of Directors at the State and National level with AIA as well as with the American Institute of Architecture Students.

Outside of the professional realm, he enjoys traveling, crafting cocktails and spending time with family. When faced with some COVID-19 induced downtime, he published In Good Spirits - a cocktail book, and launched From the Window Seat - a new type of travel blog.

Riya Desai
ASSOCIATE AIA

ARCHITECTURAL DESIGNER

Riya Desai is an Architectural Designer at HPZS. She earned her Bachelor of Architecture degree with a focus on Art/Architectural History and Landscape Design from Illinois Institute of Technology in 2021.

She  previously worked at small firms focusing on a range of residential, structural, educational and community development projects in Chicago.  Riya volunteered at Habitat for Humanity through a school club which gave her firsthand construction experience a way to explore different cities. She was a project manager for the SOFA Connect competition at Navy Pier in 3rd year of Architecture school which gave her an opportunity to lead a huge team through a competition that her team ultimately won.

Passionate about art, culture, and languages. Riya is self-taught N4-Level certified in Japanese and hoping to pursue it further, and likes to spend time in digital art/animation as a hobby inspired by film classes she took in IIT.

Lisa Ross
Office Administrator, Accounting Manager

Lisa Ross is HPZS’s Office Administrator and Accounting Manager and is an integral member to the team, responsible for efficient non-technical office operations. A graduate of Chicago’s DePaul University with a Bachelor of Science in Business Administration and Psychology, Lisa brings over 25 years of experience in owning three businesses, which varied from travel to fundraising. She has a passion for working with small business entrepreneurs and focuses on intricacies of daily operations at the firm.

Lisa is currently the owner of an Italian Ice and Gourmet Popcorn business in Park Ridge. She is married to her elementary school sweetheart, and has two teenage boys that keep her busy.  She enjoys visiting different museums, going to concerts and dinners out with family, spending most of her free time attending her son’s musical performances, orchestra concerts and lacrosse games.