Julia McFadden, AIA

Associate Principal / K-12 Sector Leader


Growing up in small-town southwestern Minnesota, Julia found design while participating in the (formerly) all-male shop class at her school. The best drafter in the class, her love for design continued to thrive. A passion for theater led her to design costumes, lighting and sets at the University of Minnesota, graduating cum laude with a B.A. in Theatre Arts. After a brief post-grad career, Julia returned to work on a Masters of Architecture.

At Svigals + Partners, Julia seeks to create meaning through the artful expression of client and user experiences, goals, and hopes. As facilitator and leader for user and community programming workshops, Julia steers the process toward well-defined construction priorities even as she identifies design opportunities. As Project Manager, Julia leads this process for both the new Sandy Hook School in Newtown, CT, and the Engineering & Science University Magnet School to be located on University of New Haven’s campus.

Julia is a thought leader in the design of safe, inspiring and meaningful educational architecture, as well as an advocate for integration of the landscape and architecture, enlivened by public art and sculpture. A Feng Shui practitioner, Julia’s designs demonstrate a unique sensitivity to scale, functionality and comfort.

What You Might Not Know

Given the choice, she would be reincarnated as a tree: enjoying a long life, observing the passage of seasons, and sheltering others from the rain.

Family-oriented, Omarys returns to her family home in New York to see relatives as much as possible, though her adventurous side encourages them to join her in exploring the city's offerings.