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Leif Estrada is an emerging artist and architectural designer, who recently completed his Bachelor of Architecture degree in Architecture with High Distinction from the California College of the Arts in San Francisco.

Born in a provincial town in the Philippines to a clan of artists, and growing up on the beautiful island of Maui, Leif attended CCA with the hopes of studying Fine Arts; however after a serendipitous event of signing up for an architecture elective class,


, and SWA Group), but was also heavily involved in extra curricular activities including his membership in the Cossutius Chapter of the Alpha Rho Chi fraternity (in which he was elected as Chapter Secretary and Chapter President, and appointed as Fundraising Chair and Pledge Educator). During his term as Chapter President, he developed a close professional network with the Bay Area Young Architects, which enabled the Chapter to host a school-wide Mixer and Networking event.

Associate AIA

He was also a member of the the school’s AIAS chapter, participated in a group Honors Critique Program, and served as a 808.214.2173

mentor in CCA’s Architecture Mentorship Program. Not only was he active with the school curricular activities but was also a constant volunteer in the community including in the Habitat for Humanity, Equality California and at the SF Food Bank.

His dedication to academics, school curricular programs, and community service have earned him awards, including, the 2012 American Institute of Architects-San Francisco’s coveted Citation Design Award for the Unbuilt Category.

Just as he’s accomplished in his academic studies, so was he with his artistic talent, having exhibited on Maui, San Francisco, and New York. His self-portrait piece, entitled “Starving Artist,” was highly praised at the 2007 Celebrating the Artist in Us Exhibition at the Maui Arts and Cultural Center, which was later used for the Center’s magazine cover. Competing in the state and national level; he received the Region-at-Large Award and Gold Key Award from the Scholastic Art and Writing Awards in New York.

Most recently he has been selected as the sole American representative to join the Venice Architectural Association at the Universitá IUAV di Venezia on their 2nd Annual “Tall on the Water” international competition, for which his group’s skyscraper design was selected and was highly-commended, most notably by Skidmore Owings and Merrill. His group’s design; symTEC, has been exhibited at the prestigious 2012 “Common Ground” exhbition at the la Biennale di Venezia di Architettura.


la Biennale di Venezia di Architettura

Maui High School Maui, HI; 2007 Visual Arts Concentration; Magna Cum Laude

San Francisco, CA; 2012


San Francisco, CA; 2012

Scholastic Art and Writing Celebrating the Artist in Us

Professional Practice GYA Architects; Alvin Yoshimori, AIA/ME Architect I; September 2012-Present Maui, HI

SWA Group; Landscape Architecture, Urban Planning + Design Intern; Spring 2012 Sausalito, CA designed layout of company website; Estádio Itaquera Park (schematics), Victoria Ward (master plan)

Visible Research Office; Mark L. Donohue, AIA

Model-maker; Summer 2009 San Francisco, CA Animate Forum (physical scale models and prototypes)

IDP # (in progress): 641571 AIA Associate Membership #: 38239177

AIA San Francisco + Center for Architecture and Design

Tall on the Water International Competition Venice, Italy; Summer 2012 with the Venice AA at Università IUAV di Venezia

Hydra Cities Athens, Greece; Summer 2010 in collaboration with University of Patras and Princeton University 808.214.2173

Venice, Italy; August 29 to November 25, 2012

International Studies

Biometric City Paris, France; Summer 2011 with Résidences Internationales aux Récollets

Associate AIA


California College of the Arts San Francisco, CA; Spring 2012 Bachelor of Architecture with High Distinction

Awards and Honors “Tall on the Water “, Highly Commended/SOM-Selected Project; 2012 AIASF Design Awards-Unbuilt Category, Citation Award; 2012 California College of the Arts Excellence in Leadership Award; 2012 California College of the Arts Community Service Award; 2012 California College of the Arts Creative Achievement Award; 2007-2012 California College of the Arts Diversity Award; 2007-2012 California College of the Arts Scholar; 2007-2012 Carmen Christensen Endowed Scholar; 2008-2011 Jury Prize Commendation for Architecture Studio 2 Project; 2009 American Institute of Architects Scholar- Maui Chapter; 2008 California College of the Arts All College Honors; 2008 Maui FIlipino Chamber of Commerce Scholar; 2007 Art Maui Scholar; 2007 Lahaina Art Scociety Scholar; 2007 Scholastic Art and Writing Award (Gold Key); 2007 Maui High School Excellent Student Award: Visual Arts; 2007 Kaha Ki’i: Hawai’i Congressional Art (Third Place); 2006 82nd Maui County Fair Art Competition (Best in Show); 2004 Na Mele O Maui (First Place); 2003

Publications Design Bureau; (pending) March 2013 / Landscape issue Chicago, IL / International Publication profile feature and article on Pier 27 project

Tall on the Water; Tentatively February 2013

Venice, Italy skyscraper/lanscape proposal for the Marghera waterfront in Mestre, Veneto

California Home + Design; May/June 2012

San Francisco, CA design proposal for the Pier 27 International Cruise Ship Terminal

Étapes: design et culture visuelle; pending publication Paris, France design proposal for the Centre Pompidou

Arts in Education, a publication by the MACC; 2009 annual issue Maui, HI on the issue’s cover, “Starving Artist” mixed-media painting

Honolulu, HI and New York, NY; 2007 Maui, HI; 2007

Affiliations and Activities American Institute of Architects; 2012-Present Associate Member San Francisco Chapter

San Francisco Food Bank; 2010-Present Volunteer

CCA Architecture Mentorship Program; 2011-2012 aided first-year students in their architectural studies

Alpha Rho Chi—Cossutius Chapter, architecture fraternity Pledge Educator (appointed); Spring 2012

presided over weekly Pledge meetings trained Pledges in preparation to become Active members

Chapter President (elected); Spring 2011-Fall 2011

presided over weekly Chapter/monthly Exec. Board meetings held responsibility of Chapter bank account acted as a liaison between the Chapter and the Alumni Association pinned Colonists of the UC Berkeley Colony of APX (Callimachus) organized a school-wide professional networking event with BAYA served as a delegate to the 64th National Convention of APX

Chapter Secretary (elected); Spring 2010-Fall 2010

acted as a liaison between the Chapter, school and the fraternitiy appointed a Chapter Historian to record the Chapter’s history

Fundraising Chair (appointed); Fall 2009-Spring 2010 planned and hosted fundraising events aided the Chapter’s return in good financial standing

American Institute of Architecture Students; 2010-2012 Member

Queer-Straight Alliance—CCA Chapter; 2010

aided the Co-Founders on establishing a Chapter by-laws

Equality California; 2009-2010

advocated towards repealing passage of Proposition 8

Habitat for Humanity; 2009 Volunteer

Skills and Knowledge Digital

Proficiencies Rhinoceros Photoshop CS5 Grasshopper LaserCAM cutter Working Knowledge Sketch-Up 3D Studio Max CNC Router



AutoCAD InDesign CS5 Firefly Arduino

Illustrator CS5 Mental Ray Rendering VRay Rendering

Maya Revit Architecture After Effects CS5 Rhino Scripting 3D Printing Epilog Laser Engraver/Cutter model-making

woodshop tools


delegating Parliamentarian meetings following Robert’s Rules of Order MS Word MS Excel MS Powerpoint

Language Spoken: Written:

Fluency in English and Tagalog, Conversational Spanish/French Fluency in English and Tagalog, Basic Spanish/French

Personal Interests drawing and painting, web and graphic design, musicals sci-fi/fantasy novels, baking and cooking

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Leif Estrada's Undergraduate Architectural Portfolio  

#IssuuPortfolio Application Portfolio into Harvard University-GSD, Yale University-YSOA, and Columbia University-GSAPP; Undergraduate wor...