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Born and raised in the farming community of Mount Pleasant, Iowa, Brent has seen his fair share of corn and soybeans. In fact, one of his first jobs (outside of newspaper delivery) was working for Cargill Incorporated roguing and detasseling Iowa’s corn fields at the tender age of 14. Hard, sweltering, and dirty, that kind of field work took place all summer — and every summer — regardless of heat or rain, and gave Brent a deep respect for farm work and those that depend on it for their livelihoods.

Fast forward to his late teens, in 1988 Brent flew out to Portland to attend Reed College just a stone’s throw from where his mother spent her teen years. Here, he half-heartedly studied Chemistry while, deep down, he yearned for some unknown adventure. After two years of Chemistry, Brent realized that was plenty and, instead, decided to take a different, much less well-trodden path.

In September of 1990, Brent found himself standing on the soilless, wind-abused rocks of Ross Island, Antarctica with a breathtaking view of the Transantarctic Mountains bathed (at least for the moment) in 24 hours of southern-hemisphere sunlight. Brent had procured a General Assistant position with Antarctic Support Associates, Inc. and spent the next 16 months living and working at McMurdo Station, one of only three year-round American research stations in the Antarctic. It is here that Brent began to work in the construction trades and was eventually promoted to Carpenter Assistant, which provided both future employment as well as future direction.

After thawing out, Brent returned to Oregon, resumed his studies at Portland State University, and worked part-time as a residential carpenter in and around the Portland Metro area. In 1997, he expedited his education and graduated from PSU with a General Studies degree (focusing on art history and music theory) with a minor in Computer Science. With his BA degree completed, Brent succumbed to the whispering voice of The Ice and returned to McMurdo for an additional 6-month contract, this time employed as a Journeyman Carpenter.

One might expect that Brent’s thirst for adventure was, by this time, perhaps fully sated. Or at least he had sated his thirst for learning new things, but alas he still searched. Following his second period of thaw, Brent relocated to Phoenix, Arizona where he attended the Roberto-Venn School of Luthiery (2000 Fall/Winter Semester) to learn the techniques necessary to build and repair electric and acoustic guitars. Upon completion, Brent moved to Oakland, California and apprenticed (in lieu of pay) with master luthier Ervin Somogyi for an entire year, living/sleeping in the workshop and eating an inordinate amount of rice and beans. Even though Brent was learning Ervin’s coveted method of designing and building fine, fingerstyle, acoustic guitars, he still searched….

It wasn’t until about 2003 that Brent began to suspect his future might lie in architecture. Relocating to Eugene in 2005, Brent attended the University of Oregon and earned his Master’s in Architecture (MArch) in 2009. Since then, Brent has been employed by several architecture firms (both residential and commercial), completed his required internship, passed the seven required examinations, became a fully-licensed architect, and hung his own shingle. Percipient Architecture, LLC & CoAct Construction Advisors, LLC opened their doors for business in June of this year and Brent couldn’t be happier (though the word on the street is that his boss is a task master)…