Academic Leadership

Renée Cheng, FAIA
Dean, College of Built Environments

Renée Cheng joined the College of Built Environments as dean on January 1, 2019. Dean Cheng comes from the University of Minnesota where she was a professor, associate dean of research, head of the school of architecture, and directed an innovative graduate program linking research with practice and licensure.

A licensed architect, her professional experience includes work for Pei, Cobb, Freed and Partners and Richard Meier and Partners before founding Cheng-Olson Design. Cheng is a leader in the American Institute of Architects (AIA) and advocates for equity in the field of architecture and in the practices related to the built environment. Recently, she led the research effort for the AIA guides for equitable practice in the workplace and has pioneered research surrounding the intersection of design and emerging technologies, including work on industry adoption of Integrated Project Delivery, Building Information Modeling and Lean.

Professor Carrie Sturts Dossick, Ph.D., P.E.
Associate Dean for Research

Dr. Carrie Sturts Dossick started as Associate Dean for Research in June 2019 and has been teaching Construction Management at the UW’s College of Built Environments since 2010. She is also the former Executive Director of the Center for Education and Research in Construction (CERC). Dr. Dossick has over a decade of research and teaching experience primarily focused on emerging collaboration methods and technologies such as Integrated Project Delivery (IPD) and Building Information Modeling (BIM). Her experience conducting interdisciplinary research complements her academic study about effective collaboration. Together, they position her well for promoting the diverse range of research in the college and seeing connections between those research streams.

Her research projects include technology and collaboration strategies for green building design and construction; global team collaboration with Virtual Reality; operations applications of BIM and facilities data in maintenance management and life cycle planning; and rebaselining BIM and asset data for existing buildings.

Professor Vikramaditya Prakash, Ph.D.
Associate Dean for Academic Affairs

Dr. Vikramaditya “Vikram” Prakash is an architect, architectural historian and theorist. He is Professor of Architecture at the University of Washington with adjunct appointments in Landscape Architecture and Urban Design and Planning. He received his B. Arch. from Chandigarh College of Architecture, India and his M.A. and PhD in History of Architecture and Urbanism from Cornell University.

Vikram was appointed Associate Dean for Academic Affairs in the College of Built Environments in November 2019. He previously served as Associate Dean for External Affairs, Chair of Architecture and Director of Undergraduate Interdisciplinary Programs. His public service includes terms on the Boards of Seattle Center and the Seattle AIA. He also directed Chandigarh Urban Lab, a series of interdisciplinary international studios.

Vikram is co-PI (with Mark Jarzombek, MIT) of three successive grants of $1.0 million (2014), $1.5 million (2016) and $1.0 million (2019) awarded by the Andrew W. Mellon Foundation. These resulted in the creation of GAHTC – a collective of over 200 teachers of global architectural history.

Professor Jeffrey Karl Ochsner, FAIA
Advisor on Policy & Procedure

Professor Ochsner joined the College of Built Environments in 1988 and teaches in the areas of architectural design, urban design, historic preservation, and architectural history. He served as chair of the Department of Architecture from 1996 to 2002 and began serving as Associate Dean for Academic Affairs in 2007.  Professor Ochsner is a two-time recipient of the CBE Lionel Pries Award for teaching excellence (1990 and 1992), an award voted on by the students.  Professor Ochsner has published six books and numerous articles.  He is widely recognized for his work the history of American and Seattle architecture as well as historic preservation. He is a registered architect, a Fellow in the American Institute of Architects, and a recipient of the Associate of Collegiate Schools of Architecture Distinguished Professor Award.
As the Associate Dean for Academic Affairs Professor Ochsner provides support to candidates, departments, and College Council regarding promotion and tenure processes.  He advises the College’s interdisciplinary certificate programs, has managed several administrative reviews and search and hire processes, and has overseen other administrative matters as requested by the Dean.
Chair, Construction Management

Bill Bender joined the College of Built Environments as the chair of the Department of Construction Management in 2015. Professor Bender came to UW after 16 years of teaching in the Department of Construction Management at Central Washington University and spent more than 17 years serving as a civil engineer for the U.S. Navy. His teaching and research interests include sustainable construction, project and risk management, and writing about how to improve education and build a diverse workforce in the construction. Professor Bender earned his Ph.D. from the University of Maryland.   

Professor Christopher Campbell, Ph.D.
Chair, Urban Design and Planning

Interim Chair, Runstad Department of Real Estate

Christopher Campbell was appointed Chair of the Department of Urban Design and Planning in 2014. Chris’ research background focuses on cultural sociology and theory. He teaches a number of courses in the Department of Urban Design and Planning’s undergraduate program – Community, Environment, and Planning


Kate Simonen, AIA, SE, Executive Director, Carbon Leadership Forum

Chair, Architecture

Kate Simonen, AIA, SE is the executive director of the Carbon Leadership Forum and Professor and Chair of the Department of Architecture at the University of Washington. Connecting significant professional experience in high-performance building design and technical expertise in environmental life cycle assessment she works to spur collective action to bring net embodied carbon to zero through cutting-edge research, cross-sector collaboration, and the incubation of new approaches.

Kate directs the research of the Carbon Leadership Forum and convenes collaborative initiatives such as the Embodied Carbon in Construction Calculator (the EC3 tool) and the Structural Engineers 2050 Challenge.

H. Pike Oliver
Acting Chair, Runstad Department of Real Estate

H. Pike Oliver (Pike) was named Acting Chair of of the Runstad Department of Real Estate in April, 2019. He joined the college in 2016 as a lecturer, teaching undergraduate and graduate real estate courses, and he serves on the Admissions Committee for the MSRE program. Pike spent 30 years working on master-planned communities at the Irvine Ranch and other properties in western North America and abroad. Prior to that, he worked for the California Governor’s office of Planning and Research. Pike also taught real estate development at Cornell University and directed the undergraduate program in urban and regional studies.

Professor Ken Yocom, Ph.D.
Chair, Landscape Architecture

Trained as an ecologist and landscape architect with professional experience in the environmental consulting and construction industries, he is a graduate of our MLA program (2002). Ken also earned his PhD from the Program in the Built Environments (2007), where he researched nature and society relations through the contemporary context of urban ecological restoration practices.