Kohn Pederson Fox
President of Kohn Pedersen Fox Associates, he worked on some of the worlds tallest buildings

Paul Katz, president of Kohn Pedersen Fox Associates PC since 2010 and a 30-year veteran of the architecture firm, died on Nov. 20 of septic shock after a brief battle with colon cancer. The South African native was 57.

Katz was known for his work on mixed-use supertall buildings, including the 101-story Shanghai World Financial Center—at 492 meters, the world's fifth-tallest building—and the 118-story International Commerce Centre in Hong Kong—at 484 m, the world's sixth-tallest high-rise.

Recently, Katz was working on Hudson Yards, the New York City project that is considered the largest private development in U.S. history. Kohn Pederson Fox is master planner for the 17-million-sq-ft minicity, which also includes a school and a cultural center; the firm is also the architect of three of the project's five planned high-rises.

Katz earned architecture degrees in Israel and in the U.S.

"Paul was a holistic architect who was determined, strong, imaginative and brilliant," says James von Klemperer, who has taken over as president of the 670- person firm. "His intellectual standards and ambitions for the quality of work were always a source of inspiration."

Kohn Pederson Fox is ranked at No. 67 on ENR's list of the Top 500 Design Firms, with $177.7 million in 2013 design revenue.