Business Name: Clark Nexsen
Corporate Communications Manager: Cat Brutvan
Phone Number: 757.455.5800
President's Name: Tom Winborne, AIA, CDT, LEED AP
President's Title: Chief Executive Officer
What are your business's core values, goals, and overall mission?
Mission Statement: Clark Nexsen’s mission is to successfully engage with our clients to create innovative design solutions. Through collaboration and the development of a wide range of expertise, we believe we can create a better world through our work.
Our goal is to be the best and to do this we foster a culture that supports the pursuit of excellence to engage and inspire the best professionals. We value our professionals and inspiring them to develop into recognized experts.
While our design work does much to benefit communities, giving back is also a guiding philosophy. As a company and as individuals, Clark Nexsen helps create the kinds of communities we all want to live in. We contribute through volunteering and contributions that are led both by employees and by the Clark Nexsen Foundation.
Share some unique facts and business history? What makes your business stand out?
Clark Nexsen is one of the oldest and largest architecture and engineering firms in the Southeast. Founded in 1920 by Pendleton S. Clark, FAIA, in Lynchburg, Virginia. Clark’s growing reputation for professionalism with institutional projects across central Virginia carried the firm successfully through the Depression and World War II. In 1948, the Lynchburg firm accepted two new partners, Walter R. Nexsen, AIA and John D. Owen, AIA. Clark also formed a partnership in 1949 with Navy Civil engineering Corps Admiral Victor D. Buhr, P.E., and Norfolk engineer Myron Sturgeon. This new Norfolk design office focused primarily on government clients.
After 1950, the Lynchburg office concentrated on service to private and institutional clients for over 30 years, while the Norfolk office concentrated on serving government clients. In 1980, Clark Nexsen made a major commitment to overseas work, opening an office in Madrid, Spain to serve the U.S. Department of Defense in the Mediterranean region. During the nine years the office was open, projects were completed on every DoD base in Spain, Italy and Greece.
Today, Clark Nexsen’s headquarters are located in Virginia Beach, with branch offices in Roanoke and Richmond, Virginia, Charlotte, Raleigh, and Asheville, North Carolina, Washington, DC, Macon, and Brunswick, Georgia, and Austin, Texas. We have grown from one office and 40 employees in 1992 to a staff of nearly 500 employees in 10 offices. We have designed major projects for the federal government, state and local governments, as well as major corporations and all markets in the private sector. The firm’s long record of success stems from the expertise and dedication of our professionals.
We are an internationally recognized firm, but our base is in Virginia and the Mid-Atlantic. We take pride in providing innovative design solutions for a wide range of public, private and federal clients right here in Virginia, including NAVFAC, Operation Smile, Old Dominion University, Virginia State University, Virginia Tech, and the cities of Virginia Beach, Norfolk, Chesapeake, Portsmouth, Suffolk, Newport News, Hampton, Poquoson, and Williamsburg.
What products or services do you offer companies or individuals?
Clark Nexsen provides architecture, interior design, landscape architecture, civil engineering, structural engineering, mechanical engineering, electrical engineering, fire protection engineering, as well as planning services for clients throughout the U.S. and overseas.
In the Architecture/Engineering/Construction (A/E/C) industry, firms that do both architecture and engineering are usually much stronger on one side than the other. Clark Nexsen is different. Our strength and our growth is based on being a truly integrated design firm with passion and a deep level of experience and expertise behind every service we offer.
What are the greatest obstacles and/or challenges that your business has faced? How have you and your business overcome them?
Our greatest challenge for us is continuing to develop a wide portfolio of services that adapts to meet the needs of our clients and potential clients.
“Over ninety-five years, Clark Nexsen has witnessed a lot of change, both as a company and within the industries in which we compete, and we watch these industries continue to evolve at a rapid pace,” said Clark Nexsen President, Chris Stone. “We believe change is a good thing. Part of our sustained success is the ability to embrace it, and adapt.”
What accomplishments are you most proud of?
We are proud to be ranked in the Top 20 Architecture/Engineering firms in the U.S. according to Building Design + Construction and of being named to the prestigious Architect 50 by Architect magazine for the past three consecutive years. Clark Nexsen has been honored to receive more than 200 design awards, including four international design awards in 2014.
Last summer, we moved our corporate headquarters to Virginia Beach’s Town Center. Clark Nexsen anchors the new office and retail building with 80,000-square-feet on four contiguous floors. Our firm provided architecture, engineering, and interior design services for the 15-story mixed used building with Design-Build partner Armada Hoffler. We are proud that our headquarters recently achieved LEED Gold CI certification in recognition of sustainability from the U.S. Green Building Council.
“With our new headquarters, we had the opportunity to create a custom space designed to reflect our design culture,” said David Keith, firm principal and design director. “We wanted an open layout with a modern, energetic, and highly collaborative atmosphere in a location that is urban, dynamic, and walkable.”
What do you see for the future of your business?
We are currently unveiling a new logo and brand identity that reflects the company Clark Nexsen is today and moves us forward as a design-driven, national brand. The logo merges the company’s two names into one word, symbolizing the unified company we are today,” said CEO, Tom Winborne. “The memorable blue mark, or ‘the cube’, represents the fundamental building blocks and the connecting points that are intrinsic to all design, engineering and construction projects.”
The new branding is currently being rolled out throughout our ten office locations in Virginia, Washington, D.C., North Carolina, Georgia, and Texas. We are excited about signage using the new logo to be installed on the Virginia Beach building we anchor with our headquarters later this spring.
Winborne adds, “This new logo is modern but timeless, with it we’re well positioned for the next twenty, successful years.”
Why are you a member of the Hampton Roads Chamber of Commerce?
Clark Nexsen both supports and benefits from membership with the Hampton Roads Chamber of Commerce. Membership increases public visibility of our firm and provides great programming and opportunities where we can connect with local business colleagues, and stay informed on issues and business trends impacting our community.