DAVID BAKER FAIA—M. ARCH 1982
David Baker did not wait for graduation before becoming a pioneer in innovative architecture. While at Berkeley, he and two fellow students formed Sol-Arc, a consulting firm dedicated to energy-efficient architecture. At the same time, he was winning awards for Spaghetti House, built for his Master of Architecture thesis.
“When I arrived at Berkeley in 1974, entering the three-year Masters program for students without architecture backgrounds, I felt like I’d come home, found my vocation. The openness and opportunity of Berkeley — combined with the intense experience of the 200 Studio — was transformative,” he explained.
In 1982, Baker founded David Baker Architects (DBA), based in San Francisco and Oakland. Known for exceptional urban housing and integrating new construction into the public realm, DBA has a passion for the power of humane and respectful environments to transform neighborhoods and elevate the lives of individuals and families.
Baker continues to value the CED experience. “One-third of my staff are CED graduates. We prize and rely on their exceptional talent, creativity, and ability to work collaboratively.”
DBA has designed and built more than 10,000 affordable homes for the Bay Area and received more than 300 local and national architectural design awards and honors, including six national AIA awards and two ULI Global Awards for Excellence.
In 1996, Baker was selected as Fellow of the American Institute of Architects. He has been honored as a Visionary Leader in Design (Non-Profit Housing Association, 2014) and a Livability Innovator in Architecture and Urbanism (Livable City, 2014). He was selected as the AIA California Council’s 2012 Distinguished Practice. In 2010 he was given Hearthstone Builder Humanitarian Award, which honors the housing industry’s 30 most influential and innovative people of the past 30 years.
He is a co-founder of StoreFrontLab, an ongoing interactive exploration of urban issues and of the storefront as a place of community, creativity, and local industry.