Sacramento, CA—We’re pleased to introduce Adriana Mouser, Senior Project Architect in our Sacramento Studio, as this month’s Studio W Spotlight team member. Adriana, 11-year experienced architect, is an advanced user of design software and has authored and implemented our firm’s Revit standards. In addition to her duties as Senior Project Architect, she hosts monthly Revit learning sessions to collaborate with staff on new standards, details and lessons learned. Adriana enjoys both the creative and technical aspects of architecture and has lent her expertise for many Studio W projects, including Paradise Ridge Elementary School Multipurpose/Administration Building for Paradise Unified School District, Folsom Lake College Rancho Cordova Center Phase 2 for Los Rios Community College District and Westmore Oaks School Modernization for Washington Unified School District.
Adriana’s love of architecture began in high school woodshop, where her teacher and mentor instilled the importance of drafting, and later encouraged her to attend architecture school. Learn more about Adriana…
What is your hometown, or where do you live currently and what do you like about it?
I mostly grew up in the countryside, just north of Sacramento surrounded by farmlands. I loved being able to see all the way to the horizon in every direction. Whenever I drive up there, I am still put at ease by being able to see open land for miles and miles.
What is your favorite restaurant or food?
I love Mexican food and I’m currently working my way through Pati Jinich’s Mexican Table cookbook to try and make every recipe. It’s a slow endeavor but I love learning more about my heritage and culture through food.
What is your favorite song, movie or book?
My favorites are always changing, but recently I read The Nightingale by Kristin Hannah, which is a historical fiction novel about female hardships and triumphs in WWII. I was captivated by the perseverance and willpower of the women in the story. Also, I could watch Sleepless in Seattle every day. It wasn’t until I was an adult that I realized Tom Hanks plays an architect in that movie! Oh, and I would be remiss if I didn’t mention I’m a Swiftie and have been to four Taylor Swift concerts.
Who is your hero or a person that inspires you?
My grandfather, who we all called Apa. He was a monumental figure in my life and represented stability, honesty and hard work. I strive for those values in my life everyday. A couple of years ago I had a custom necklace made of a John Deere tractor in his honor and wear it almost daily.
What is a typical weekend for you?
I’m mostly a homebody and enjoy cooking, reading, drawing and board games – but my husband and I try to get out and hike or backpack whenever we can. I also devote time to volunteer in the local design of Kingdom Halls (the place of worship for Jehovah’s Witnesses) in California. It’s very fulfilling to be able to put my professional skills to use in this way and to be able to give back to my community.
How did you find architecture?
I took three years of woodshop in high school and had a great mentor in my woodshop teacher, Mr. Montre. We had to learn to draft before ever stepping foot in the shop, and I loved seeing my designs materialize from paper. My mom still has all the furniture I made from that class. During my senior year when it was time to apply for colleges, I asked my teacher what I should do and he responded promptly with, “You should be an architecture major and go to Cal Poly San Luis Obispo.” I didn’t even know what architecture was, but I trusted him and did just that.
What is a building and/or destination that inspires you and why?
The Grand Canyon holds the number one spot for me. It’s like looking into the past and reminds me of the bigger picture of life.
What is your most memorable project and why?
The various Paradise Unified School District projects. My husband grew up in Paradise, CA and attended Paradise Ridge Elementary (formerly Ponderosa Elementary) and Paradise High School. His parents still live there and were impacted by the 2018 Camp Fire. In fact, we were there visiting for the weekend just before the fire happened. I can vividly remember sitting at my desk when my mother-in-law texted the family, “Paradise ablaze. Evacuating to Chico.” It was surreal to see photos of the Safeway, which we had just been in a couple days prior, be completely burned down. We still go up to Paradise to visit family, and it is richly rewarding to see the projects that I have been a part of be incorporated into the fabric of the community.
What is your favorite aspect of working at Studio W Architects?
Working in a small office means we get to wear multiple hats daily. I enjoy the variety of work I get to do, from design to construction administration, mentoring to managing the materials library and code analysis to Revit standards. Being well-rounded is very important to me and Studio W provides these opportunities.
What project have you worked on at Studio W that made you grow the most professionally? Why?
Westmore Oaks School Modernization. It was my first venture as a project architect where I was able to see it from design all the way through construction. We had an excellent relationship with the contractor, which made it a smooth process for me, and our client leader on the project provided mounds of support. I’ll always remember it.