Toby Olsen Joins OPN Leadership
We are happy to announce that Toby Olsen, AIA, has been promoted to our leadership team as an Associate Principal.
Toby has been with OPN Architects since 2009 when he graduated from the University of Nebraska with a Masters in Architecture and minor in community and regional planning. In his 13 years of experience with OPN, Toby has led projects with excellence and shown great dedication to incredible architecture through planning, programming, and design.
My work is inspired by the experiential quality of space that breathes life into projects. Architecture is not simply technical problem solving. The artistry of creating mood, shaping form, pattern, and light all come together to enhance the way we inhabit the world. We have the duty to enhance the human spirit through design. That is the inspiration to do my best work.
Toby has a deep knowledge base crafted by experience with a variety of projects, with a specialty and passion for library design. He relishes working with people, be it in public participation processes, strategic planning, or client visioning sessions. Toby was part of the design team for the national award-winning Cedar Rapids Public Library in downtown Cedar Rapids, Iowa. He’s worked on the design and led the management of new and renovated library projects across the country, including the recently completed Lawrence County Public Library, which embodies the director’s vision for a library that would house hope not just books. The renovated library is a beacon for learning in a place where light can struggle to break through poverty’s pervasive darkness..
“Toby is a problem solver. He goes to every client with an open and unique mindset where every design is custom and no two buildings are ever alike. He brings variety to what he does each day, and keeps his design skills in top form when he approaches every client with a blank sheet of paper, ready to listen.” – Wesley Reynolds, Principal
Toby has dedicated much of his time to being active in the Cedar Rapids community, serving on multiple boards including: Cedar Rapids Metro 100+ Who Care, Cedar Valley Human Society Board of Directors, Theatre of Cedar Rapids Board of Directors, Cedar Rapids Metro Economic Alliance Community Development Innovation Council. He is a member of the Leadership for Five Seasons Class of 2016.
“Toby has been a fundamental piece to building OPN’s reputation and experience in library design. Not only are his talents in architecture and good design, but compassion and understanding for everyone he meets.” – Dan Thies, Retired President & Principal