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FIRM INTRODUCTION Elevar Design Group, established in 1967 is headquartered in Cincinnati, OH with satellite offices in Dayton, OH, Cleveland, OH, and Lexington, KY. Our roots are planted in the Tri-State region, but our projects reach around the country. Elevar Design Group serves in both the public and private sectors, with a deep rooted understanding of how to work with all types of clients. We offer an array of services designed around our customers’ expectations and business demands. From strategic planning and community engagement services to professional planning, programming, architecture, engineering and interior design services, to project management, construction administration, and institutional and operational research, Elevar leads the way from inception to completion. Elevar Design Group is an EDGE certified firm with the State of Ohio and is the largest minority-owned professional design firm operating in the City of Cincinnati. Elevar is also involved in the Dayton Area Chamber of Commerce Minority Business Partnership which is an economic development initiative that focuses on leveraging minority assets to strengthen the economy. Our firm was founded on the premise that each client deserves a high degree of personal service, and each project the search to find the “right” design solution, both artistically, and technically. As an Architect and an Engineer, our patron, Emilio Fernandez, exemplified the modern Master-Architect philosophy of eminent responsibility for the “whole” solution, and for the life of the building. These beliefs permeate our culture and translate into our work. Throughout our history, Elevar has responded promptly and efficiently to client needs with quality services and innovative, practical design solutions. Our continuing success has been achieved through our personal commitment and professional abilities. Our firm grew from humble beginnings into what is now a staff of more than 80 employees. This growth occurred organically as Elevar continued to design in new markets and acquire new clients. The combination of experienced, long-associated members working with knowledgeable younger members offering fresh, innovative ideas and approaches have lent to a continued focus on relevancy in the design world. No matter the type of client, we know that one thing is constant: our clients want a greater value for the investments they make in their facilities. Elevar delivers just that. We create beautiful spaces that take user experience to a higher level. We continuously strive for the best solutions: timeless design that is responsive to change with optimal performance for cost. We believe there is a design for every need, but we avoid the predictable, cookie-cutter response, and instead differentiate our product to always elevate our client’s game.


Greg Otis, AIA Tom Fernandez, SARA

Kim Patton, AIA

Tony Lozier, PE, LEED AP


Senior Vice President, Strategic Planning


The CEO of Elevar Design Group, Tom Fernandez is responsible for the overall vision and innovation of the firm. He facilitates design direction and ensures that his staff is equipped to provide the best solutions to clients. Since assuming executive leadership of the firm in the early 1990’s, Tom was instrumental in growing the staff into the multi-disciplined team of specialized designers it is today.

Kim Patton serves as President of Elevar Design Group, guiding the design staff in daily operations and profitability. Kim’s energy and innovation has been the key to his successful career which has spanned nearly 30 years in many different markets. An Architect by trade, his vast experience has influenced his ability to grow Elevar’s staff and to provide clients with costeffective and creative solutions.

Greg Otis champions strategic initiatives for Elevar Design Group. Greg’s experience and passion for the built environment influences both his internal organizational leadership and external strategic plans. A natural planner and facilitator, Greg has the proven ability to yield positive change for employees and clients alike. Greg’s acumen is based on clear communication and innovative planning.

Tony Lozier has more than 43 years of experience in MEP Engineering. As Principal of Elevar’s MEP team, he directs all engineering services and ensures the highest quality for clients. His widespread experience has served as an asset to many of Elevar’s projects, as Tony has the ability to lead the engineering team toward the best solutions for client projects.


John Rademacher, AIA, NCARB

David Hester, RA

Lisa Cameron Gulley Senior Designer,

Senior Architect - Dayton

Senior Architect

Educational Planning

With more than 30 years of experience, John Rademacher has served a long list of notable clients in various market sectors. John stays actively engaged, working on behalf of his clients. BY using his insights, talents, training and experience, John to contribute meaningfully to clients and the community.

David Hester has a proven school design track record, having been entrusted to manage the four largest academic projects at Elevar with a combined budget exceeding $180 million. David seeks creative best-value design solutions for the project’s dollars, while ensuring durable, attractive and lasting educational environments.

Lisa Cameron Gulley has 20 years of experience in educational programming and design. Her knowledge of public and private education design allows Lisa to bring creative and unique solution to each facility. Having been involved in numerous bond issue assistance efforts and community engagement campaigns, Lisa is highly skilled at incorporating important stakeholder values into her designs.

Vice President, Engineering

ELEVATE THE WAY YOU LEARN Our design team recognizes that learning occurs both in and outside of the classroom. Each designed space within a school has the potential to engage students in a thoughtful dialogue with their environment. We provide school designs which represent the unique qualities of a community or campus, specifically suited to the needs of its students, staff and alumni. We work as an advocate for the owner to provide facilities to enrich the learners of tomorrow.

West Clermont High School Cincinnati, OH

This consolidated high school was completed under the design/build project delivery method. In 23 months, our team designed this new school for 2,400 students. The massive scale of the project includes a 1,000 seat auditorium, two gymnasiums, a stadium complex, 8-lane natatorium, a state-of-theart academic wing, and adjoining Mercy Healthplex. A result of creative financing, this project was made possible by a public-private partnership with our team, the District, the OFCC and a private developer. Together, we were able to provide the District with a brand new school at no extra cost to the taxpayer.

North College Hill Elementary, Middle, & High School Cincinnati, OH

Our team had been working with the District for more than 25 years on small upgrade projects. In 2007, a bond levy was passed as a result of our master planning and community engagement services. We completed the design and construction of a new middle school and high school adjacent to existing buildings on a tight urban site. The phased construction included two academic wings with shared core spaces of cafeteria, gymnasium, music rooms, library, and auditorium. The new school and the adjacent elementary school are dominant elements of the revitalization of the community. The building was certified LEED Platinum.

Riverview East Academy PK-12 Cincinnati, OH

Located along the bank of the Ohio River, this school was designed for 615 students in the East End community. The complicated project site is bound by the river, an industrial storage tank facility, a railroad embankment, a residential neighborhood, and a park all located in a flood plain. The school is elevated 19 feet above the site with a unique and innovative design which served as a solution for the site challenges.

Three Rivers PK-12 School Cleves, OH

Our team was engaged by Three Rivers Local School District to guide them through a master plan that would address the existing deteriorating buildings. After thorough analysis, we deducted that all buildings were deficient and the District was in dire need of a new facility to support students of the community. We led a grass-roots engagement process and amassed significant public support for the project. Partially funded by the State, we were able to provide one consolidated PK-12 facility to meet the needs of the District.

Cincinnati Hills Christian Academy Cincinnati, OH

Working with the school on a facility plan to upgrade their campus, we began the design process by creating concepts for the new spaces that would help engage donor support. Once funds were secure, we proceeded through various upgrades, additions, and renovations to the Welcome Center, upper elementary school, vehicular drop off area, outdoor play areas, and cafeteria.

Willowville and Summerside Elementary Schools Cincinnati, OH

Our team is currently working with the West Clermont Local School District to design and build two new PK-5 elementary schools, Willowville Elementary and Summerside Elementary, both on existing elementary school sites. These two schools were lacking adequate educational space and systems to support a modern curriculum and growth of the District. Our team was hired for the design of two new PK-5 elementary school buildings, each at 83, 274 SF. In addition to the design of these two new schools, also included in the scope of the project is the renovation and addition to the existing PK-5 Clough Pike Elementary building.

Streetsboro High School Streetsboro, OH

We worked with the growing Streetsboro City School District to design a long-term building solution that was flexible enough to provide multiple configurations of programs while still conforming to the established criteria. This project included an 800seat Auditorium and a new Stadium complex. This project was designed for LEED Silver Certification.

St. Bernard-Elmwood Place PK-12 School St. Bernard, OH

In an effort to help the St. Bernard-Elmwood Place City School District plan towards successful bond issue campaign that would result in securing funding for a new consolidated District school, our team assisted in developing the campaign strategy. Analyzing the master plan, we reviewed existing building conditions, plus validation and refinement of OFCC data. A preliminary program of requirements (POR) was prepared and preliminary design concepts were developed. Our team also supported the District by providing graphic material support and social media management for the public campaign. With the help of marketing collateral given to the community to explain the project needs and costs associated, the bond levy passed in November of 2016. Our team was awarded the full A/E contract in early 2017, and the project is currently underway. The new Pk-12 Campus will provide the District with a consolidated state-of-the-art school. The project is scheduled for completion in December 2019.

Vontz Center for Molecular Studies Building Envelope Improvements Cincinnati, OH

The Vontz Center for Molecular Studies, designed by acclaimed architect Frank Gehry, entered service on the University of Cincinnati’s East Medical Campus in 1999. As it nears twenty years in service, it requires upgrades to the roof and unique design of the building envelope which uses curved brick masonry walls. Our team is working as a collaborative group to provide this major renovation of the building envelope systems while the building is occupied.

Miami University Kreger Hall Oxford, OH

Our team performed the rehabilitation to Miami University’s Kreger Hall, home of the Physics Department and the College of Arts and Sciences. The project included a lecture hall, multiple labs, classrooms and offices. Designed to meet LEED Silver requirements, there was a significant building envelope and MEP component to restoring this 4-story concrete and masonry academic building.

Cincinnati State Technical Community College Cincinnati, OH

Our team worked as a collaborative team for the design and construction of a new academic center that included a premier culinary arts school, a student life center a communication and technology center, conference rooms, lecture halls, offices, lounges and support functions, and parking structure for nearly 800 vehicles.



We believe in creating environments that are conducive to a meaningful educational experience. The organization of the plan, the use of colors, textures and light appropriate to various spaces are only some of the many methods we employ to achieve the end result - a meaningful educational building that works both for the staff and administration and nurtures the student. - David Hester | Senior Architect


Elevar Design Group - Learn  

Our design team recognizes that learning occurs both in and outside of the classroom. Each designed space within a school has the potential...

Elevar Design Group - Learn  

Our design team recognizes that learning occurs both in and outside of the classroom. Each designed space within a school has the potential...