ENR Southwest's 2011 Top 20 Under 40
A successful architect, developer, business owner and builder
Shepley Bulfinch, Phoenix
Before reaching the age of 30, Nieto had already bought and sold his own business and become a successful developer, contractor and architect. He began his career at the age of 14 working for his family-owned plumbing contracting company, garnering skills he later applied when founding his own development and property management company. In 2004 he co-founded merzproject, an architecture firm that helped revitalize the downtown Phoenix core through award-winning urban renewal projects such as the Link. Not one to rest on his laurels, Nieto merged merzproject with Shepley Bulfinch in 2009, becoming one of the nationwide firm's youngest principals in the process. He honors his diverse ethnic background as an active board member for the Arizona Latino Arts & Culture Center and is an avid supporter of local Latino artists.
This integrated services guru leads firm's virtual construction division
36, Director, Integrated Services
As leader of Kitchell's Virtual Construction Division, Root is described by colleagues as the firm's integrated services guru. A trained architect working for a contractor, Root is a passionate champion of the technologies and processes that enhance teamwork and benefit the client. Root mentors others—even those outside of his own firm—on how best to utilize technology to efficiently deliver more effective projects, and he has taught a building information modeling program at Arizona State University since 2007. Root has worked on $1 billion of highly complex health-care projects in the region.
Innovative engineer on key projects such as Grand Canyon Skywalk
37, Project Manager
Lochsa Engineering, Las Vegas
Rounds' practical and innovative approach has led to work on complicated projects such as the steel-framed, cantilevered Grand Canyon Skywalk in Arizona. Rounds is known for establishing strong working relationships with clients and other members of the design team, preferring a proactive and positive approach to dialogue. His passion for structural challenges started early as he helped his collegiate engineering team win the 1999 National Championship for the AISC Steel Bridge Competition. Coming full circle, he is now adjunct professor at University of Nevada, Las Vegas, teaching steel and concrete design.