On the evening of April 25, members of the Southeast design community donned their finest and flocked to the Atlanta History Center for a gala celebrating the recipients of the esteemed 2024 Southeast Designers and Architect of the Year Awards. Hosted by the Atlanta Decorative Arts Center along with co-sponsor Veranda, the annual springtime event recognizes the region’s unique talents and the distinctive style they bring to the greater industry discourse. “It’s the heartbeat of design in the Southeast,” said Veranda executive editor Ellen McGauley, reflecting on the festive occasion.

“It’s amazing to see entries and finalists not only from major cities but also from small towns,” added Katie Miner, general manager of ADAC. “It speaks to ADAC’s wide reach: We service the largest region of any design center in the country.”

From 101 submissions representing nine states, the judges—McGauley; Aimee Buccellato, partner at Schafer Buccellato Architects; and designer Corey Damen Jenkins, principal and CEO at Corey Damen Jenkins & Associates—narrowed the selection to 26 finalists across three categories: Architecture, Contract and Residential. All of the winners were first-time honorees. “It’s a huge validation that our hard work is paying off,” said Tim Adams, principal at T.S. Adams Studio Architects in Atlanta, upon accepting the Architect of the Year award for the diverse materiality and innate sense of place present in his firm’s varied projects. Contract Designer of the Year winners Tate Casper and Jordan Winston of Oxford Design in Tampa revealed a different side of Florida in their atmospheric entry, Predalina, a restaurant that highlights their client’s Portuguese heritage and multigenerational roots in the Sunshine State. In the Residential category, designer David Frazier of small-town West Point, Georgia, won for a decidedly citified project: the seamless combination of two previously separate apartments into a single—and singular—light-filled, luxury loft space in New York’s Tribeca neighborhood. Echoing Adams’s sentiments, Frazier said, “This is a huge honor, considering the amount of talent in this room.”

“Everyone here brought their A game,” agreed Jenkins. Noting the boldness of the winning projects, right down to their passementerie, he envisioned Southeast design trends making a “fantastic impact” nationally. “It’s going to move the needle for the rest of the country to be a bit more individual and really take risks,” he said. “I’m looking forward to that.” To hear the honorees in their own words and see their winning entries, watch here:

This story is a paid promotion and was created in partnership with the Atlanta Decorative Arts Center.

Homepage image: One of the entries from T.S. Adams Studio Architects of Atlanta, 2024 Southeast Architect of the Year | Photography by Aimee Mazzenga

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