Home » Business News » 2012 » January » January 11, 2012

SmithGroupJJR Promotes Mella and Weingartz to Vice President

January 11, 2012 - Detroit, MI

SmithGroupJJR, one of the nation's leading architecture, engineering and planning firms, has promoted Greg Mella and Michael Weingartz to vice president.

Greg Mella, AIA, LEED AP BD+C, co-leads the sustainable design initiatives across SmithGroupJJR with Russell Perry, FAIA, LEED AP BD+C. Mella's growing list of accomplishments includes leadership of a team to integrate LEED requirements and sustainable design goals into SmithGroupJJR's master specifications. He also developed and led execution of a firm-wide education program, the "GreenBag Series," to promote sustainable design. Mella heads the firm's Annual Sustainable Design Leaders Summit. He also spearheaded the firm's effort to record energy use metrics for every active project -- an important step to allow SmithGroupJJR to measure progress toward meeting AIA's 2030 Challenge energy use goals.

In addition to his sustainability leadership across SmithGroupJJR, Mella is one of the firm's most externally visible members. Specifically, his contributions to the AIA are significant. In addition to his role with the Committee on the Environment (COTE), other AIA activity has included the 2030 Commitment Steering Committee, for which he was a founding member. In addition, he contributed to the AIA's Ecological Literacy in Architecture Education Report and co-led the development of 50 to 50, a web-based resource of tools, strategies and techniques for a comprehensive approach to sustainability. In 2010, he served as a juror for the prestigious AIA Gold Medal and Firm of the Year awards program.

Mella joined SmithGroupJJR in 1994 after earning a BA in Art and Art History from Colgate University followed by a Master of Architecture from Catholic University of America. Within two years of becoming a registered architect, in 2001 he became one of the very first LEED Accredited professionals. Mella was project architect for the world's first LEED Platinum building, the Chesapeake Bay Foundation's Philip Merrill Environmental Center, Annapolis, Maryland.

Michael Weingartz, PE, LEED AP, is the engineering director for the mechanical and electrical disciplines at the Detroit office of SmithGroupJJR. During his 25-year career as a professional electrical engineer, he has provided the design of power distribution, security, lighting, fire alarm, life safety and communications systems.

During the last 2 1/2 years, Weingartz has created a powerful, multi-disciplined engineering group at SmithGroupJJR's Detroit office that works diligently as a team and supports the various studios. Weingartz is dedicated to improving quality, efficiency and effectiveness and has successfully worked with both disciplines to become increasingly client-focused. The group has grown significantly -- since 2009 it's risen from 23 to 35 staff. Weingartz works with the engineering directors from the firm's other offices to improve consistency and standards.

Weingartz is recognized for his skill with developing strong client relationships and has earned numerous repeat clients because of his attention to detail and responsiveness to their requirements. The firm's mechanical and electrical disciplines are now regularly winning MEP work domestically, with significant clients including Michigan State University and the University of Michigan. Internationally, SmithGroupJJR is winning engineering work in Asia, including for the 4.5 million-square-foot research and development complex for First Automotive Works in China.

Weingartz earned a BS in Electrical Engineering from Michigan Technological University and is a registered professional electrical engineer in 18 states.

SmithGroupJJR ( is one of the largest architecture, engineering and planning firms in the U.S., ranked #1 for design quality based on design awards won in Architect magazine's 2011 annual best firms ranking. The firm is also the recipient of the 2011 Landscape Architecture Firm Award from the American Society of Landscape Architects. A national leader in sustainable design, SmithGroupJJR has 363 LEED professionals and 70 LEED certified projects.

Follow SmithGroupJJR on Facebook at

Image Available:
Image Available:

Add to Digg Bookmark with Add to Newsvine

Sandra Knight, APR


Comment on this story