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Donald Emmanuel Olsen Edit Profile

Architect , educator

Donald Emmanuel Olsen, American architect, educator. Registered architect, California. Recipient awards, including national awards of Excellence Architectural Record, Houses of 1966; scholar Harvard University, Cambridge, Massachusetts, 1945-1946; A. W. Wheelwright fellow Harvard University, 1953.


Olsen, Donald Emmanuel was born on July 23, 1919 in Minneapolis. Son of Clarence Edward and Thea (Scharnell) Olsen.


Bachelor of Architecture, University Minnesota, 1942. M. Architect, Harvard University, 1946. Postgraduate in civic design, University Liverpool, England, 1953.

Postgraduate in philosophy of science, London School of Economics, 1968.


Architectural designer Saarinen, Swanson & Saarinen, Bloomfield Hills, Michigan, 1946. Project manager Skidmore, Owings & Merrill, San Francisco, 1948. Designer, draughtsman Wurster, Bernardi & Emmons, 1949-1951.

Private practice architecture Berkeley, California, since 1954. Professor architecture University California-Berkeley, 1954-1990, professor emeritus, since 1990. Guest professor various universities, lecturer in field, United States, England, Germany, Denmark.

Lecturer, teacher Ecoles D'Art Améicaines de Fontainebleau, France. Nominator Carnegie Grant Personality Assessment and Research Creativity Study Architects, 1959. Professional adviser City of San Francisco, 1961-1962.

Juror, critic, evaluator, various programs, projects.


  • Registered architect, California.


  • Other Work

    • Contributor articles, chapters to professional publications. Subject of numerous professional publications Numerous exhibits throughout United States, Europe. Principal works include numerous design commissions.


Fellow American Institute of Architects (2 national honor awards 1970, 8 various regional, local Honor, Excellence and Merit awards 1967-1989). Member British Society for Philosophy of Science, Society for Philosophy and Technology, Open Society and Its Friends.


  • Other Interests

    Philosophy, travel, photography, opera.


Married Helen Karen Ohlson, April 2, 1944. 1 child, Alan Edward.

Clarence Edward Olsen

Thea (Scharnell) Olsen

Helen Karen Ohlson

Alan Edward Olsen