John A. Ruffo

FAIA, LEED AP, RIBA / Founding Partner

With an eye on the future and optimist at heart, John teases opportunity out of the most challenging of propositions, and compels us, always, to question what’s possible. John’s passion for strategic planning has helped advance WRNS Studio as a practice, with a focus on projects that contribute positively to the social fabric. John has led large-scale planning and design efforts on many of the higher education and healthcare campuses that serve our communities. The clients he has brought into the WRNS fold are our long-term business partners, and in many cases, our friends. Whether pursuing different markets, exploring alternative delivery methods or cultivating new business partnerships, John is constantly looking for creative and innovative ways to make great design happen.

During his 37-year career, John has served the architectural profession with consistency and integrity. A common thread in all of his work is fostering awareness of the value of good planning and design. He is a long-time leader within the Society for College and University Planning (SCUP), where he has served as President, Board Member, and Faculty Member of the SCUP Planning Institute. He is also Past President of the Architectural Foundation of San Francisco and former Chair of the Cal Poly San Luis Obispo College of Architecture and Environmental Design Advisory Council. John’s ability to lead diverse stakehold­ers toward a shared vision is one of his greatest strengths and the foundation of the various leadership roles he’s held throughout his career.

John earned his Bachelor of Architecture from California Polytechnic State University, San Luis Obispo and his Master of Architecture from University of California, Berkeley. He came to design by way of science. In architecture he discovered the same kind of process that attracted him to the hard sciences — a deep inquiry into a core problem — counterbalanced by an art form more forgiving and complex, the ability to be more right or wrong, but not entirely either. For John, architecture represents the perfect blend of art and science, and his practice reflects this synchronicity.

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