As part of the coordination team at AOA, RJ is responsible for day-to-day organizing and planning for AOA’s design team. With his background in master planning in-hand, RJ largely supports the team in all things visioning and planning: working to accomplish site analysis, build creative packages, and more.
RJ studied at the University of Nevada, earning his degree in Political Science before pursuing a dual Master’s Degree from the University of Florida in Urban and Regional Planning and Themed Environments Integration.
Across his education, he has focused his studies in sustainability planning and human-scaled design, familiarizing himself with long-lasting and ethical practices for clients, projects, and the planet. RJ is also a certified Commercial Drone Pilot and has a graduate certificate in Geographic Information Systems; he uses these skills to produce high-quality maps, data analysis, and other geographic-based services during the planning process.
RJ got his start in design while working for the City of Reno, where he assisted the community development team on a number of city council and planning commission initiatives. His projects included the Virginia Horse Range, where he partnered with public agencies and conducted field research to write a development handbook that was inclusive of conservation initiatives. RJ also focused his efforts on planning activities, answering questions and assisting Reno citizens with city ordinance needs. Amidst these special projects, he learned how to integrate citizen feedback with actionable items to achieve solutions for various city planning tasks.
RJ later moved on to the Disneyland Resort as part of The Walt Disney Company’s all-star operations staff, designing operational plans and training procedures alike to ensure safe and effective transportation processes. His hands-on experience in operations allows him to view a project from both a conceptual and maintenance perspectives, taking into account best practices for real-world guest behavior from step one.
In these positions, RJ has demonstrated the ability to learn and thrive in a fast-paced, project environment. His passion for the built environment, combined with his propensity for sustainable practices and coordination know-how, make him an incredible addition to any project in AOA’s repertoire.