2023 WBJ Women Who Lead
in Real Estate, Construction and Design
Kristine Pafford

2023 WBJ Women Who Lead in Real Estate, Construction and Design - Kristine Pafford

SPT Architecture’s Kristine Pafford was nominated and selected as an honoree for Wichita Business Journal‘s Women Who Lead in Real Estate, Construction and Design 2023 collection.

2023 WBJ Women Who Lead in Real Estate, Construction and Design
Kristine Pafford

Q. What has been your career path?
A. I have been at SPT Architecture my entire career. After my sophomore year at Kansas State University, I started as a part-time receptionist for the summer and returned the following summer as an architectural intern. After graduation in 2002, I accepted a full-time position and have been at SPT ever since. Although I’ve spent my career at one firm, the variety of project types I’ve been able to work on has kept me on my toes and I continually learn new things.

Q. Who are your mentors and how have they influenced your career?
A. I’m incredibly lucky to have worked closely with Ron Spangenberg on many projects. The trust he had in me as a young architect was a little scary! Ron taught me that design doesn’t have to be complicated to be good, and that the best design tool is the trash can. I learned a lot about integrity and work ethic from Ron. I hope that I can be a good mentor to other young architects so I can pass down that knowledge.

Q. Best advice for a women wanting to enter your field?
A. My advice for other women or any young person is that you must be proactive. You will need to become comfortable asking questions and seeking information. Nobody expects you to know everything, but you must be willing to find answers. Always do what you say you’re going to do, and always follow up. Being accountable is how you build a great reputation.

Q. What do you like most about your role?
A. Architects have a great responsibility to their clients. I don’t take it lightly that the lines I draw represent real spaces that people are going to inhabit to learn, work, receive healthcare, etc. Our clients put their trust in me to guide them through the design and construction process, which can be a stressful experience for them. The best part of my job is when clients are happy with the completed project, and their vision has become a reality.

2023 WBJ
Women in Business
Gina Loomis

2023 WBJ Women in Business - Gina Loomis

SPT Architecture’s Gina Loomis was nominated and selected as an honoree for Wichita Business Journal‘s Women in Business 2023 collection.

2023 WBJ Women in Business
Gina Loomis

Q. Other than work/life balance, what is the most significant professional challenge you have face?
A. When my career began in 1994, the architecture industry was predominately male. As a female, I had to learn to be assertive, quickly gain knowledge in our industry, and develop confidence to earn the respect of my co-workers, clients, collaborators, and business associates. Those challenges, hard work, and my desire to continually learn and grow led to my role as a partner in our firm, expanding my leadership role.

Q. Describe your most outstanding business accomplishment.
A. In 2010, I was approached by Ron Spangenberg, co-founder of Spangenberg Phillips Architecture, about becoming a partner with the firm. As a mother of two young children, I had great hesitancy as my family was my top priority. After much prayer and deliberation (and convincing from the other partners), I decided to accept their offer. It’s been one of the best decisions I’ve ever made; it has truly been my privilege and an honor to have the opportunity to help our firm grow. Since I joined the firm in 2006, we have grown from 20 employees to our current 38.

Q. Describe your most significant contribution to the Wichita community.
A. In 2020, my co-partners (Greg Tice, Rebecca Gates, Brad Teeter and Dave Wells) and I embarked on the search for a property to purchase, renovate and move our office to a new location – we knew it had to be a special place, with good bones and in need of renovation. After a long search, we decided to purchase the old Greyhound bus station at 312 S. Broadway. This move allowed us to renew and revitalize an old, dilapidated downtown building, and ultimately help to reduce the urban blight and improve South Broadway, Wichita’s main north/south corridor. I was the lead interior designer for our project and after an intense, long renovation process, we have been rewarded in many ways. One of the highlights was winning the Wichita Business Journal’s “Coolest Office in Wichita” contest in March 2023, which was a wonderful recognition for all our hard work. Additionally, I have thoroughly enjoyed working on many projects with our great clients in Wichita – too numerous to name. The impact I have been able to have in our city has truly been rewarding to me personally. I think it has made a difference, and I hope in a small way, has made our city a better place to work and live.

Q. What is the most important thing you have done to improve the climate for women in business?
A. As a partner in the firm, I work alongside Rebecca Gates, my fellow female partner, to create a work environment where our female staff members feel comfortable and can thrive. With our firm’s culture, amenities, equal pay, and the support of all our firm partners, we strive to make our firm an equitable environment for all. Our growth has allowed us to hire more employees; of our 38 employees 17 are female. In our role as firm partners and leaders, we work closely with our project teams, mentor our designers, and give them the opportunity to personally grow in their roles. They gain confidence from their accomplishments, learn how to handle conflict, thrive as part of a team, and they get to feel the success, which greatly contributes to our overall success as a firm.