Joanna Ha Yean Shin is a Senior Design Lead at MKDA. As one of the founding members of the Washington, D.C. studio, she contributes to providing a comprehensive and integrated design across a broad spectrum of markets, including hospitality and commercial buildings. Its unique design approach merges practice areas, trends, outside market events, and robust national and local expertise.
Ms. Shin, who the Washington Business Journal named as a 2018 “Top 3 Architects You Need to Know”, was formerly an Associate and Design Purpose Leader at Gensler, where she combined research strategy with design to execute purpose-focused projects. Ms. Shin, believes that good design includes value beyond the visual appeal and can affect social change within the built environment.
In addition to experience that includes workplace design, sports facilities and repositioned commercial office buildings, she has transformed larger scale, existing residential assets with designs that fit each neighborhood.
Earlier in her career, Ms. Shin worked at the South-South Cooperation, Special Unit at the United Nations Development Programme, where she studied emerging development projects throughout the globe and developed her ethos that progress is a result of great partnerships who share a common goal.
Ms. Shin earned a Masters of Architecture from Columbia University Graduate School of Architecture, Planning, and Preservation and a Bachelor of Arts from Barnard College, Columbia University in Human Rights and Architecture.
With a strong interest in how design addresses the critical issues faced by communities, Ms. Shin holds LEED GA accreditation and a Social Economic Environmental Design (SEED) certificate that advocates for purposeful consideration of social, economic and environmental matters in the built environment.
In addition, Ms. Shin has taught seminar workshops in the undergraduate Architecture program at Barnard College and lectured at Columbia University’s Graduate School of Architecture, Planning and Preservation. She has also taught Senior Thesis at George Washington University and is a visiting critic for Marymount University.