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RTA Celebrates Newest Architect Ericka Everett

Ericka Everett has officially completed all 6 divisions of the Architect Registration Examination and logged enough professional hours to earn the title of Architect! Ericka joined RTA in 2018 with more than six years of experience already under her belt and we couldn't be more proud to have her on our team. Congratulations Ericka! 

Ericka Everett Portrait News Web

Sheva Willoughby, AIA Elected Director for AIA Colorado South

RTA is delighted to announce that our own Sheva Willoughby, AIA has been elected as the South Director of the American Institute of Architects Colorado! Sheva has been with RTA for 3½ years and has a Bachelor's Degree in Environmental Design from the University of Colorado at Boulder and a Master's Degree in Architecture from the University of Colorado at Denver. She has played an integral role in some of our most challenging projects, including leading the sustainability efforts on the Pikes Peak Summit Complex, and we could not be more proud!  

Sheva Portrait News

Beyond the Blueprints: Architect Patrick Ward

Welcome to Beyond the Blueprints, where we get to know RTA staff beyond their work lives. Join us in discovering the passions and interests of our amazing team!

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How did you get involved in fly fishing?

From a young age, my dad would take us on summer trips to the north woods in Minnesota and Canada. We'd stay in a cabin on a lake and go out to fish every morning and evening. There was a dusty old fly rod in the boat, and I discovered that it was the best way to drop a fly back in the lily pads where the biggest blue gills lived. Later, I learned about trout and bass, and now I fly fish for everything that swims.

How old were you when you started making your own flies?

My family has always been crafty. Around the age of 10, my dad gave me a kit that had a vice, feathers, and hooks, and I started making these big, ugly flies, but they worked! I tried them in all the little streams and ponds around where we lived - everywhere I could walk or ride my bike. I learned more about the insects, and continued to evolve, especially when I moved out west.

How does fly fishing in Colorado differ from where you grew up?

At this elevation and cold water, the rivers and lakes are mostly populated with trout. In Virginia, there are plenty of little brook trout streams in the Blue Ridge, but as soon as you get down in elevation to warmer water, you'll find more small mouth and striped bass. The stripers get really big, and are a handful on a fly rod!

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How do you find a "good spot"?

You have to go exploring and sniff it out, ask people, or spend money at a fly shop. It's a good idea to hire a guide. If I was going to Montana on a trip, for example, I'd hire a guide for the first two days and I'd ask him/her, "Where can I go on my own? Where can I take a boat? Where can I hike and fish?" There's a ton of information out there, and then there's a lot of information that's not out there. You just have to go and say, "I wonder what's up at the headwaters of this particular river" and follow the map. The fun is figuring it out.

Why do you catch and release?

Fly fishing has become so popular that the potential for overfishing is a real concern. Even early in the 20th century the native greenback cutthroat trout were nearly fished to extinction. Most of the places that I visit are regulated as catch and release waters. 

Another cool thing about fly fishing is understanding the larger system. I learned the entomology of the streams so that I know what kind of flies to tie. Trout can be very selective in their feeding, especially the larger, older ones. If there's a Red Quill hatch, they usually won't bite on yellow flies because they key in on the most abundant prey species.

Have you ever had a Moby Dick?

Yes, once I spotted a huge trout swimming around in an eddy, eating tiny mayflies. It was cruising in a big loop, and I must have made twenty casts before the fly landed exactly in its path. It just came up and calmly ate the fly, and I jerked it right out of the fish's mouth and into a tree. You have to have patience and nerves!

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What's your favorite part about fly fishing?

The natural beauty. You're in an awesome setting and the insects themselves are beautiful. They're just these delicate little animals that only live for one day. The larva (nymphs) live under the water for a year or more and then in one day, they emerge, they molt, they mate, they lay their eggs, and they die. The fish are beautiful, the setting is beautiful; the whole thing just fits together. It's a great way to spend time outside.

What local resources would you recommend?

Angler's Covey.

RTA Welcomes Seven New Team Members

We are pleased to announce that we have welcomed seven new staff members to our Architectural and Marketing teams over the last few months. The new member of our Marketing team is Marketing Assistant Kitaen Jones, and our new Architectural team members are Architects Ben Foster, Christine Costa, and Jon Houck, and Emerging Professionals Erika Everett, Mitchell Starrs, and Jordan Johnston. Read the full press release here and welcome to all! 

Denver Health ACUTE Center for Eating Disorders Receives Recognition of Excellence

Congratulations Denver Health! The RTA-designed ACUTE Center for Eating Disorders at Denver Health has been recognized by Anthem Health as a Center for Excellence for Medical Treatment of Severe and Extreme Eating Disorders; the FIRST medical unit in the field of eating disorders to achieve this designation! Read more about this incredible project here.

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Adaptive Sports Center Kelsey Wright Building Construction Update

Even with snow on the ground, FCI Constructors Inc continues the diligent work on the Kelsey Wright Building.The new Adaptive Sports Center facility will double the square footage the program currently has helping to better serve the needs of the participants. With steel erected and exterior sheathing and insulation being installed, it won’t be long until this special project is complete. We can’t wait for the summer 2019 opening! Read more about this amazing project here.

Exterior Photo Adaptive Sports Center Construction Update 1 Jan 2019

Hinsdale County School District Passes Bond

Congratulations to the Hinsdale County School District! On November 6 voters approved a $3.95 million bond to be matched by a $9.4 million state-funded BEST grant to address security, safety, and health concerns at Lake City Community School. Read more about this exciting project here.

18040.00 Lake City School Main Entry News

Second Annual Bud Roberts Memorial Scholarship Awarded

RTA is ecstatic to announce that we have officially awarded our second annual Bud Roberts Memorial Scholarship to not one, but TWO staff this year! The scholarship, in honor of our founding partner, is intended to help one of our folks each year do something exceptional to further their education and development as an architect, and this year we couldn't pick just one. Patti Sharp will be working with Engineering Ministries International and Mitchell Starrs will be working with Habitat for Humanity to design and build distaster resistant housing in El Salvador. Congratulations Patti and Mitchell!

Patti Mitchell BudRobertsScholarship News

Standing Room Only at the UCCS William J. Hybl Sports Medicine and Performance Center Groundbreaking

It was standing-room only at the groundbreaking celebration for the new William J. Hybl Sports Medicine and Performance Center at UCCS that is poised to transform education, research, and healthcare for athletes of all levels, active individuals with disabilities, elite military, and first responders. We were thrilled to celebrate this milestone with the university and Penrose-St. Francis Health Services, Centura Health, and our design-build partners HOK Architects and JE Dunn Construction. Visit our page for more updates on this great project!

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