David Baker Architects


David Baker: Distinguished Alumnus

See all Events

We are proud of our alumni here at the College of Environmental Design, and it is an honor for us to acknowledge a handful of them at the Circus Soiree for their vision and lifetime of achievements.


Saturday, March 4, 2017
5:30 -  9:30 pm
The California Memorial
Stadium University Club

The CED Distinguished Alumni Award is given annually to alumni of the departments of Architecture, City & Regional Planning, Decorative Art/Design, and Landscape Architecture & Environmental Planning in recognition of outstanding achievement. Candidates have made outstanding and significant contributions in professional, social, academic, artistic, or other areas appropriate for recognition. 

This year's Distinguished Alumni cross boundaries from ethical design to environmental restoration to large building management.

Learn more about David Baker (M.Arch '82), Douglas Abbey (M.C.P. '79), Austin Allen (B.L.A. '82) and Diane Jones Allen (M.L.A. '84) and the significant work that they do.


David Baker, FAIA LEED, is the founder and Principal of David Baker Architects (DBA) a progressive architecture firm based in San Francisco and Oakland that creates acclaimed buildings in urban environments. Over the years, the firm has become known for exceptional housing, creative site strategies, designing for density, and integrating new construction into the public realm.

After graduating in 1982—while living in the house he built for his Master of Architecture Thesis—David founded DBA, and in 1996 was selected as Fellow of the American Institute of Architects. A leader in the affordable housing sphere, 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.

Baker 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 recognition of a career of dedicated commitment to the built environment. 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.

A progressive urban activist and bicyclist, Baker has also been a union carpenter, a teacher, a father (of three grown kids), and served on the Boards of the San Francisco Bicycle Coalition and SPUR (San Francisco Planning and Urban Research Association). 

Baker currently lives in a net-zero cottage of his own design in the Mission District of San Francisco with his partner, Yosh Asato. Together, they are co-founders of StoreFrontLab, an ongoing interactive exploration of urban issues and of the storefront as a place of community, creativity, and local industry.

His recent architectural projects include affordable senior and family housing in the Bayview District of San Francisco, and the first market-rate micro-units to hit the market in Hayes Valley.

Pacific Pointe Apartments. Image: Bruce Damonte