Principal Architect: Franc Blackbird

Frank Blackbird

Hometown: Sacramento now. Lived in a dozen states and Europe.
Education: Bachelor of Architecture-Design from Texas Tech University, Lubbock, TX
Licensed architect: California, Nevada, Texas
First job: Junior Hot Shoppes dessert and salad server, Falls Church, VA.
Studio function: Big Cheese and ultimately responsible
Inspirations: Art, wine, foreign lands, nature.
Interests: Science fiction, antiques, old buildings, dogs and cats.
Pet peeves: Huge egos and cell phone conversations in public places

Blackbird has over thirty years architectural and construction experience. In addition to experience as Principal of Blackbird Associates, she has served as:

  • Principal Architect for the department of Facilities Design and Construction at the University of California Davis Medical Center, leading a team responsible for planning, design and project management of a $500 million capital improvement program for a 120-acre campus in Sacramento, CA.
  • Assistant Manager for the Facilities Planning Department of the Texas Technological University Health Sciences Center in Lubbock, Texas, leading an eight-person team responsible for planning, design and project management of a four-campus academic, research and patient care system located throughout West Texas.
  • Project Architect for two architectural firms developing laboratory, educational, detention and commercial facilities

"I got into architecture because it was the biggest challenge that I could find. And sure enough, every day I have to learn something new!"

Back to top

Senior Architect: Leslie Thomas

Leslie Thomas

Hometown: Roswell, New Mexico (alien? No, army brat.)
Education: Bachelor of Arts in Architecture, University of New Mexico
First job: Drink server at an all-you-can-eat buffet restaurant
Studio function: Working the project from design to construction; Trekkie Techie
Inspirations: Fall, nature, my dad (whom I envision as a cross between John Wayne and Archie Bunker)
Interests: Ultimate Frisbee, quilting, travel, hiking, camping, sci-fi, reading
Pet peeves: Annoying little noises I can't find, identify and stop

Thomas has over twenty-two years of architectural and construction experience. In addition to experience as Senior Architect and Information Systems Manager of Blackbird Associates, she has served as:

  • Owner of a CAD drafting service primarily for architectural firms, also working with engineering and manufacturing firms.
  • Project Manager for an architectural firm developing government, educational, and commercial facilities.
  • Designer for three architectural firms developing commercial multi-family residential, and educational facilities.

"Growing up, I loved art and doing artsy-craftsy projects. Architecture is a way to keep my childhood fun alive with a big electronic color book."

Back to top

Designer: Bushra Hamarneh


Hometown: "Rocklin Now, born and raised in Amman, Jordan"
Education: Bachelor of Science in Architectural Engineering from the University of Jordan
First job: Architectural Intern
Studio function: Design, project management, producing construction documents, and whatever comes my way.
Inspirations: Creation, children, inventions and competitions
Interests: Dancing, music, chocolate, travel and figuring out how things work
Pet peeves: Dishonesty, and would you please stop shaking your legs!

Hamarneh has over five years of commercial architectural experience and holds a Bachelor of Science degree in Architectural Engineering. She is an associate member of the AIA and is currently pursuing her California architectural license.

  • Project Designer at Blackbird Associates: Responsible for design and management of small commercial projects, ranging from equipment installations and replacements, building additions and department expansions, to office building renovations and pharmacy remodels. Her role also includes writing contracts and fee proposals, meeting with clients and their staff, project scheduling, producing construction documents and coordinating with consultants and review agencies.
  • Architectural Intern: Before coming to Blackbird, Bushra worked on various hospitality projects at another local architectural firm, analyzing site conditions, producing conceptual designs, conducting code analysis. She was also responsible for producing construction documents within a team.

"In architecture there's always something new to learn. The wonders just never cease; how cool is that?"

Back to top