Karen Sicner

Director of Municipal/Civic Studio

With a three-decade career in architectural design, Karen Sicner has developed a passion and recognizable aptitude for creating government and justice facilities across the country. Her experience includes the extremely successful Riverbend Correctional Facility in Milledgeville, GA, which was designed and built in less than a year, and the Terrell County Regional Youth Detention Center in Dawson, where Karen was instrumental in emphasizing rehabilitation and healing in the final facility design.

Throughout the delivery of these projects, and dozens of others across the country, Karen is a skilled and compassionate designer who recognizes that environment has a direct effect on behavior. She acknowledges this correlation throughout the design of correctional and justice facilities, by choosing colors, acoustical details, outdoor spaces and interior finishes that positively affect those who inhabit the spaces. She works closely with clients to help them articulate their project goals and then translates them into workable spaces that transcend institutional archetypes.

As the Municipal/Justice Studio Director, Karen knows building consensus among a facility’s departmental leaders is the most challenging and most critical component of project success. Blending the security and treatment requirements in efficient and psychologically-sensitive spaces is a key focus of her work on a daily basis. She loves successfully fitting together the puzzles pieces of technically and programmatically challenging spaces and delivering facilities that work for the client, stand the test of time and look good.

Karen finds inspiration in helping others – and in the beauty of the natural environment. She loves the satisfying process of seeing her drawings come to life in the form of signature government projects that serve their communities in a variety of positive ways.


Master of Architecture
Georgia Institute of Technology

Bachelor of Architecture
University of Illinois

Memberships & Affiliations:

Registered Architect - GA
American Institute of Architects (AIA)


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