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ms Q+A: Kim Woolard

Maggie Kearns Francis

March 11, 2019

Kim in 100 Words or Less

I work in the commercial architecture division as a Team Lead for our internal ALDI group. After graduation from UNC-Charlotte College of Architecture, I worked as a cartographer, city planner, and historic preservationist before going into commercial construction management. Shortly before the birth of my daughter Samantha, my husband and I started a custom door manufacturing business and I worked with him until we sold the business in 2015. Soon after we moved from Morganton, NC, to Raleigh, NC. I have loved returning to an architecture career, moving initially from residential design to commercial architecture here at ms. 

The Speed Round

What was your first job?
I worked a summer for my dad at Knob Creek Furniture doing inventory in the parts department! My first paying job, Biscuit Cook at Hardee’s during college!


What is one item on your bucket list?
I would love to travel to Scotland, Ireland, Italy and Australia. 


Last album you downloaded?
Edges Run by MIPSO


If you could have a cup of coffee with anyone, who would it be?
Charles Shultz


Least favorite food?


Last thing you read?
House of Leaves by Mark Danielewski. However, I am a die hard Stephen King fan!


Best concert you’ve been to?
Tom Petty and the Heartbreakers


Farthest you’ve been from home?
Berlin, Germany


Listener or talker?
Depends on the conversation.


Favorite movie?
The Shawshank Redemption


If there was a holiday in your honor what would it celebrate?
Awkward conversations!


If you could live one day over again, which would you pick?
My wedding. It was a pretty awesome day surrounded by family and friends, and it was on a mountain top!

Tell Us More

What sets ms apart from other engineering & architecture firms?
ms provides a collaborative work environment that produces a well-rounded and thought out product. To experience the teamwork and coordination that it takes to make ms run like a well-oiled machine is awe inspiring.


How would you describe your design style?
I truly do believe in less is more, so mostly modern. However, I also love adaptive re-use and industrial influenced architecture. More recently I have enjoyed learning more about environmental thoughtfulness in design. Maybe modern adaptive-use green architecture!


If you weren’t an architect, what would you be doing?
Writing children’s books or doing illustration work.


What would you go back and tell your 22 year old self?
Be ready, because life is full of surprises!


You’ve got one day in Raleigh. What do you do?
An early morning walk on one of Raleigh’s extensive Greenway Trails. I would follow that up at Big Ed’s City Market Restaurant, hot cakes the size of the plate, one will do ya! I would then walk around downtown Raleigh to visit some of the great museums and see some North Carolina state history, like our State Capitol. It once burned down after an ill-fated attempt to fire proof it, can’t make that stuff up! If I wanted to do some shopping, I am going to Cameron Village close to the NC State campus. With all that walking I would surely have an appetite, so I’m heading to either to The Pit BBQ or to Clyde Cooper’s BBQ, which has been a staple in downtown Raleigh since 1938. Then I would head over to Boxcar Bar + Arcade for some pinball and beers. I would top the day off with a movie on the lawn at the NC Art Museum (it is the oldest publicly funded state art museum and an architecturally significant building).


What do you enjoy doing in your free time?
I love to spend time with family and friends. You can usually find me outside taking advantage of the beauty of North Carolina, I am a mountain girl at heart and love a good hike and any opportunity to take some photos.


Any final words?
Life is the art of drawing without an eraser!