Learning by Design Magazine recently recognized Southwest DeKalb as an 2015 Outstanding Project. “Learning by Design is a celebration of quality architecture, design, planning, and the execution of creating environments for learning. Biannually, we recognize school districts, universities, and colleges, and their architectural firms for going beyond the standard and achieving excellence. Judged by an esteem group of peers, both new and renovated building projects are examined. . . . Award winners are recognized by achievement in four categories: Grand Prise, Citation of Excellence, Honorable Mention, and Outstanding Achievement.”
DeKalb School Board officials asked CDH Partners, Inc., to design a 67,000-sq.ft. instructional addition that includes a 650-seat auditorium, state-of-the-art offices and classrooms, laboratories and new band and orchestra facilities. Plans also included the renovation of existing classrooms, outside gathering areas and student health center. The performing arts center is a stunning facility that contains a large stage with state-of-the-art lighting and audio systems.
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Melissa Cantrell (AIA, LEED AP), principal for CDH Partners, was recently named to the Cobb County Chamber Board of Directors for the Marietta Area Council. The Cobb County Chamber is one of the most successful chambers in the nation. It offers its 2,500 members an unparalleled platform for networking, professional development, and brand visibility.
Cantrell joined CDH in 1999 and the leader of the Education Studio. She is a graduate of the Georgia Institute of Technology where she received a Bachelor of Science with honors in Architecture and Masters in architecture with honors. She is also a 2014 graduate of Leadership Cobb.
With 15 years of experience in architectural design and master planning, she has been repeatedly recognized for her talents, leadership, and articulate voice within CDH. As a registered architect and a LEED Accredited Professional, she works with major school districts in the Atlanta Metropolitan Region and has designed high performance education spaces for students from kindergarten to university level. Her guidance to area schools has positively impacted learning environments for thousands of metro-Atlanta students.
She also has served as an officer for the Woodstock Rotary Club and is an active member of the Georgia Association of Physical Plant Administrators, Council of Educational Facility Planners, Georgia Association of School Facility Administrators, and the United States Green Building Council. In the past, she is a graduate of the Atlanta Regional Commission Regional Leadership Institute.
Melissa Cantrell, AIA LEED AP principal for CDH Partners Inc., was recently selected as a member of Leadership Cobb. The Leadership Cobb program develops leadership skills and knowledge through its programs and retreats. Participants are introduced to a variety of viewpoints that illustrate the array of economic, political, educational, and social factors at work in Cobb County. Sessions combine lectures and dialogue among speakers as well as audience interaction with leaders in all facets of the community.
Leading by example allows Leadership Cobb participants to directly impact the Cobb community. Each year forty-five diverse and qualified individuals are selected to participate in this leadership development program. Leadership Cobb enhances personal and professional growth while participants gain awareness of current issues, community resources and the social, political and economic needs of the community.
With 15 years of experience in architectural design and master planning, Melissa has been repeatedly recognized for her talents, leadership, and articulate voice within the firm. A majority of her time is focused on the design and construction of educational facilities. She joined CDH PARTNERS as an honor graduate from Georgia Institute of Technology with a Bachelor of Science and Masters of Architecture.
As a registered architect and a LEED Accredited Professional, she holds strong convictions about the influence of the built environment on the education of our children. She believes: “The foundations of early education create a framework for continued success of our students in their pursuit of excellence. By designing environments that foster learning these spaces can unleash potential in students to shape the future of our communities, region, and nation.”
Her work with the major school districts in the Atlanta Metropolitan Region has provided high performance education spaces for students from the Kindergarten to University level. Melissa’s guidance to schools systems and stakeholders in DeKalb, Fulton, Cobb, Gwinnett, Pickens and Clarke County Schools, has positively impacted learning environments for thousands of metro-Atlanta students. Most recently her architectural influence has extended to the campus of Kennesaw State University.
Her service to the community goes beyond the local school system. She has served as an officer for the Woodstock Rotary Club and is an active member of the Georgia Association of Physical Plant Administrators, Council of Educational Facility Planners, Georgia Association of School Facility Administrators, and the United States Green Building Council. Last year, she participated in the Atlanta Regional Commission Regional Leadership Institute for the Class of 2012.