Robert LL Jones AIA

I was born in Seattle to two lovely people: my mother, an art student from Spokane; and my father, a newly graduated attorney of the University of Washington, who rode the rails out west in 1933 from his hometown, Chicago. I have lived in the Northwest most of my life, but travel frequently in many and varied parts of the world.

Immediately after graduation in 1967 from Stanwood High School, I entered Seattle University to pursue a career in Mechanical Engineering. After two years of college, desire for adventure inspired me to take leave from school for a six-month, pauper’s budget, Grand Tour of Western and Eastern Europe via a traditional ocean crossing on the Italian Line’s Michelangelo. Upon my return in 1971, facing the draft because of a low lottery number, and following an aborted attempt to achieve status as a conscientious objector, I enlisted in the U.S. Navy and served for four years as an Air Traffic Controller.

After an honorable discharge, and following my passionate interest in Architecture since youth, I entered the University of Washington to pursue degrees required for professional practice: Bachelor of Arts in Environmental Design in 1977, and Master of Architecture in 1980. Following a brief hiatus to study Art of the North Coast Indians, I began the practice of Architecture at Clayton R. Joyce, Architects in 1981. In 1984 I joined the fi rm of TRA, Seattle, where my projects ranged from small and large residential to small and large commercial, including major transportation facilities. I was one of a team of five architects who served as the Architectural designers of Seattle’s Metro Bus Tunnel stations, mine being the above-ground Convention Place Station. Other projects took me to nearly a third of the contiguous United States as well as Alaska and Saudia Arabia. My last major project in commercial practice was design of Redmond’s Municipal Airport in Central Oregon’s high desert.

When our nursery was in its fledgling stages, I worked with my partner, Dan, to lay out gardens, to design and construct the hardscape around our house and throughout the gardens, and spent many a commuter hour on the ferries to and from Seattle keeping the business books. By spring of 1993 it became apparent that a career decision was imminent and on April 30, 1994, I resigned my association with TRA to assume management of Heronswood Nursery, Ltd., a business founded in 1987 with Dan Hinkley.