Kirby C. Mears
Founding Principal, AIA, LEED® AP
After receiving his B.A. from Rice University, Kirby worked for Caudill Rowlett Scott in Houston. He spent a summer in Europe on a traveling fellowship, and a year in Athens working for Frank E. Basil Architects and Engineers. Returning to Houston for a Bachelor of Architecture degree, Kirby subsequently worked for Taft Architects, William T. Cannady and Associates and Skidmore Owings and Merrill prior to establishing Murphy Mears Architects. Kirby’s father designed and built his family’s home, a one-story mid-century modern house with an attached sky-lit painting studio. Kirby attended a public school in France with his brother and sister, and continues to make return trips to Southern France where he restored an apartment in a 13th c. stone building. Kirby enjoys working with clients to make houses having an organizational logic and inspiring, light-filled rooms.
Kyle B. Humphries
Principal, AIA, LEED® AP
Kyle joined Murphy Mears Architects in 2003 upon completion of the six-year Bachelor of Architecture program at Rice University, where he was the recipient of the Mary Alice Elliot Award and the Mary Ellen Hale Lovett traveling Fellowship. Kyle’s previous experiences include internships at Pei, Cobb, Freed & Partners in New York, and at Ray & Hollington Architects in Houston. While at Pei, Cobb, Freed & Partners, Kyle was a key contributor to projects such as the Center for Government and International Studies at Harvard University and the Hyatt Center in downtown Chicago, both with Harry Cobb, and worked directly with Jim Freed on his submission for the renowned Houses at Sagaponac Project. Kyle enjoys the problem solving aspect of design, understanding the limitations within which multiple solutions can be studied and evaluated. His appreciation of clarity, refinement of a concept, beautiful detailing, new materials and modern construction techniques inform his approach to each project. Outside of work, Kyle enjoys taking photographs of family events and during trips taken with his wife Karoline son Evan and daughter Skylar, and of course of buildings, including completed projects for the firm.
Gina is a native Houstonian and admires the beautiful examples of residential design in the historic Heights neighborhood where she lives. On weekends, she enjoys being outside, playing golf, tending her gardens and taking her loyal rescue dogs to Memorial park. Gina is our office manager and keeps MMA organized.
Sam Brisendine has a Bachelors of Environmental Design from Texas A&M and a Masters in Architecture from Rice University. Sam has interests in product design, architectural representation, and thesis-guided design process. In addition to private residence design Sam has professional experience with K-12 schools, corporate campus design, and multi-use urban developments. He was honored as a Future Design Leader from the Designs Future Council in 2016 and is a co-founder and board member of Every Shelter, a Houston-based non-profit that strives to improve the lives of those displaced by conflict and disaster through shelter improvements. Sam’s hobbies include soccer, roller skating, and playing video games with his kids.
Julie graduated from Texas A&M University where she received her Bachelors in Environmental Design and Masters in Architecture. She was selected as the winner of the Texas A&M College of Architecture’s Celebration of Excellence for her Masters thesis, Mission: Catalyst – a mixed use design proposal and master plan to revitalize the area surrounding the San Antonio Missions. Julie enjoys the personal aspect of designing homes custom to her clients’ needs and wants as well as the technical side of design, including drawing details and coordinating with consultants. In her spare time, she enjoys travelling and doing DIY projects around the house with her husband and young daughter.
Amanda Chang earned her Masters degree in Architecture from Rice University. In addition, she has a Bachelors in Architectural Studies with a minor in Geography/Environmental Studies from the University of California Los Angeles. Amanda is passionate about Passive House design and construction. She is currently working on earning her Passive House Institute of the U.S. (PHIUS) consultant certification. Her hobbies include experiencing the wonders found in nature, listening to music, and playing tennis.