Tryba Architects celebrates promotion of four Principals and two Associate Principals in Denver and Dallas-Fort Worth

In one of the largest leadership expansions in the firm’s history, Tryba Architects has named four new Principals while also elevating two Senior Associates to Associate Principals. “This transition marks a major milestone in our inter-disciplinary studios as we recognize the exceptionally talented, dedicated individuals that have set our firm on a remarkable trajectory of growth, across the Denver and Dallas-Fort Worth markets, while demonstrating a strong commitment to our clients and to high-quality, innovative design,” said David Tryba, FAIA, the firm’s Founder and Lead Design Principal.

Since the firm’s founding in 1988, Tryba Architects has led in the successful planning, design and delivery of exceptionally crafted buildings and spaces that have a lasting effect on their communities. The firm’s multi-disciplinary studio structure provides a range of specialties working collaboratively in a holistic approach to design. Each of the four new Principals are already leaders at the firm, well known for their contributions and leadership both internally and in the community. The entrepreneurial initiative of these four individuals has resulted in significant expansion of the firm’s operations in scale and complexity, across three cities. 

Shannon Bearden, AIA, RID, NCARB
Principal – Managing Director of DFW 

Shannon has directed Tryba Architects’ Fort Worth office since 2022. Since then, the firm expanded to include a Dallas office, also under Shannon’s direction. "Shannon is a natural leader, and her deep engagement in the Dallas-Fort Worth region has been the driving force behind the Texas offices’ organic growth, attracting top design talent from within the DFW market. Her work is inspired by a motivation to make a lasting and positive impact on the North Texas cities in which she practices," said David Tryba.

Under Shannon's leadership, Tryba Architects has become well-integrated within the Fort Worth community. Shannon is active in the Real Estate Council of Greater Fort Worth and a member of the Board of Directors of Downtown Fort Worth, Inc. A Fort Worth 40 Under 40 award recipient, Shannon is remarkably talented at building relationships in the business community, the public sector, and with consultants while also deftly balancing the management of the studio and overseeing its growth. David Tryba noted, “It’s been remarkable to experience the culture she has brought to the Fort Worth and Dallas offices, her excitement and ability to recruit and retain, along with the competitive edge she carries with her at all times.”

Kathleen Fogler, AIA
Principal, Director of Urban Design 

Since Kathleen’s arrival in 2013, the firm’s urban design and master planning projects have grown significantly in scale, complexity and geography, with multiple projects in Texas and in Pueblo, CO, Madison, WI and Bentonville, AR. Many of Kathleen’s visionary plans have led to long-term, multi-year engagements with a variety of public and private sector clients and are now being realized as vertical projects. “From day one, she started making no small plans,” said David Tryba. “The visionary ideas generated under Kathleen’s leadership—designed so effectively and efficiently—are coming to reality, adding tremendous value that will last for centuries.” Kathleen has led the Urban Design teams through large, multi-faceted planning projects including the 41-acre Fox Park at the intersection of I-25 and I-70 in Denver; the 184- acre Fitzsimons Innovation Community at the University of Colorado Anschutz Medical Campus; master planning for Fort Worth’s Near Southside; and the DEN 50-Year Vision and Framework Plan. Kathleen is especially committed to activating streets and open spaces and providing a high-quality, vibrant public realm that enhances communities. 

Sarah Komppa, AIA, LEED AP 

Sarah joined Tryba Architects in 2013. She successfully balances a variety of roles simultaneously while serving as a key resource in the evolution of the firm’s operations and in the management of projects and staff. Her background in both architecture and urban design has given Sarah a unique understanding of complicated zoning, permitting and entitlements issues, and she plays a key role in the early stages of a project, developing strong relationships and providing thoughtful guidance throughout complex processes. Sarah has been instrumental in projects including Clayworks, AC Development's redevelopment of the 12-acre CoorsTek site in Golden; Cherry Lane, the BMC Investments and Invesco's 1,109,000 SF redevelopment of the existing Sears site in Cherry Creek North; Denargo Market, with Golub; the Denver Country Club Master Plan, and many others. 

Sarah is equally passionate about developing future talent, overseeing the firm’s internship programs, staff development and recruiting. With her warm, approachable demeanor, she is a mentor and brand ambassador for the firm. Sarah serves on the City of Denver’s Downtown Advisory Board. She is actively involved in the Urban Land Institute (ULI) locally and nationally and was recognized as ULI’s Rising Star in 2017. “Sarah makes it happen,” said David Tryba. “She has had an incredible impact on how we manage our growth and focus on the future, getting us to think differently about our services and our structure. I couldn’t be more excited about Sarah’s new role as Principal, helping us to get to that next level where we’re headed as a firm.” 

Tommy Matthews, Assoc. AIA 
Principal, Director of Design Communications 

Tommy is driven by a passion for understanding and communicating the intersection of history, nature and the built environment. In his eleven years with Tryba, Tommy has elevated the firm’s brand identity and serves as its visual storyteller. “Tommy carries a supreme understanding of the trajectory of the firm and what our brand means in the context of history,” said David Tryba. “His ability to elevate how we communicate our design has had an enormous impact on how our work is perceived in the world, on the path of timelessness.” Tommy is an inspiring presence in nearly all of the firm’s projects and business development efforts, with an extraordinary ability to understand and advance a client's vision. He has played a key role in projects such as the Western Stock Show Association Legacy Building and Denver Rock Drill. His multifaceted expertise in graphic design, experiential design, branding, marketing, and exhibit design, alongside his remarkable talent for articulating the nuanced expression of place, has led to numerous new projects, initiatives and relationships for the firm. Tommy's community involvement includes serving on the Board of Historic Denver, Inc.

We are also pleased to announce the promotion of our two new Associate Principals. 

These two outstanding professionals consistently and effectively manage multiple projects and elevate strong, productive team relationships, driven by a passion and commitment to creating world-class architecture. 

Brent Bartels, AIA
Associate Principal 

Brent joined the firm in 2021 and was quickly promoted to Senior Associate in 2022. He is a resourceful, client-focused and talented Senior Project Manager and Senior Project Architect who seamlessly engages with stakeholders and diverse personalities on a range of large-scale projects with complex zoning and planning challenges. “Brent has been critical in guiding a range of complex projects, clients and teams towards successful and compelling architectural and urban design solutions,” remarked Principal John McIntyre, ANZIA. Brent is currently leading the Tryba team in delivering CoorsTek’s new Phase 1, 182,000 SF international corporate headquarters for AC Development. “Brent is calm and considerate, highly collaborative and has an extraordinary blend of design and project management skills that make him a highly valued leader of project teams,” noted McIntyre. Brent has the ability to seamlessly lead teams through all phases, from design through construction, and is a champion for sustainability in the firm's internal practices and in projects.

Emmett Harrison, AIA
Associate Principal 

Emmett has been with Tryba Architects for nine years, serving as Senior Project Manager and Senior Project Architect for some of the firm’s largest and most complex projects including Cherry Lane, BMC Investments & Invesco's 406-unit mixed-use redevelopment in Cherry Creek North; the Firestone & Robertson Whiskey Ranch distillery in Fort Worth; and the 16-story Colorado Center Tower 3 Cigna Regional Headquarters. With his quietly confident demeanor, Emmett exemplifies leadership and excellence in coordinating multiple perspectives, voices, and scopes of work, ensuring project success for owner/developer, contractor and architect. Emmett leads the firm's BIM and Revit resource groups and expertly balances technical, design and process issues to find the best solutions for all. Managing Principal Bill Moon, AIA describes Emmett as “the consummate professional, able to bring clear and concise understanding of very complex issues. His level of craft and detailing and design and technical expertise is what we strive for every day.”