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Robert L. Shemwell

At a Glance

Class Year: 1982

Award Year: 2005

Degree: Bachelor of Environmental Design

Profession: Architecture


Robert Shemwell '82 (BED), a principal with Overland Partners, has expertise in master planning and architectural design for sustainable mixed-use, institutional, recreational and educational projects. He earned a Master of Architecture, with a 4.0 GPA, from the University of Texas, and completed his undergraduate work with honors at Texas A&M University, where he received the Edward J. Romieniec Award and the Rae Jacobs Memorial Scholarships. Shemwell was a principal designer for the Lady Bird Johnson Wildflower Center near Austin, which was recognized in 2000 as an Earth Day Top Ten Project by the American Institute of Architects. He also led the design of the Riverbend Church in Austin, Texas; and Plaza Kinta, a retail project in Monterrey, Mexico. He was principal-in-charge of award-winning projects like the visitor entry and light rail transit center for Grand Canyon National Park, the Penn State University School of Architecture and Landscape Architecture, the Environmental Education Center in Upper St. Clair, Pa., and the Corinth Civil War Interpretive Center at Shiloh National Military Park. He led the Overland Partners team that designed the Texas A&M University Bonfire Memorial. The design, featuring 12 portals arranged in a giant "Spirit Ring" encircling the site of the tragic Nov. 18 Bonfire collapse, was chosen from over 194 entries in an international design competition. Currently Shemwell directed designs for two California museums - the Napa Valley Museum and the Autry National Center in Los Angeles. He is also leading design and master planner for a research and visitors center at Bracken Cave, near San Antonio. The architect has been heavily involved, at national and local levels, with the U.S. Green Building Council. He has been involved with and led several major multi-disciplinary charrettes, including the Texas A&M Abbott Family Leadership Conferences since 2001, the San Antonio Renewable Energy Workshop; a three-day charrette at Penn State University, and a series of National Park Service superintendent workshops. He has lectured widely on design and environmental issues. A Leadership in Energy and Environmental Design (LEED) accredited professional, Shemwell is a member of the American Institute of Architects, the Texas Society of Architects, is immediate past president of the Founder's Council at the Southwest Foundation for Biomedical Research and he sits on the board of directors for Solar San Antonio.