Dougherty’s purpose is to enhance and beautify neighborhoods, improve quality of life for inhabitants and embrace and elevate the human spirit.



Dougherty’s Design Forward philosophy rests upon the belief that public facilities design shapes lives, and must be developed through close collaboration with the client and community. Each project has the potential to elevate activities and provide long-term flexibility, healthy environments and inspirational settings. Dougherty believes that design excellence is measured as much by value, sustainability, maintainability and fiscal responsibility as it is by the outward beauty of a project. Our legacy projects support learning, social interaction, personal growth, wellness and quality of life experiences.


A distinct Design Forward methodology lays the foundation for an effective design process based upon clarity, vision and truth. Design Forward is a framework that provides flexibility to accommodate a wide range of client priorities without compromise. Dougherty works closely with each community to ensure that a project is a reflection of local culture. Proposed solutions deliver added value alongside refined concepts that maximize functionality. Continuity through design and construction ensures that the original vision is realized.


Dougherty’s dedication to sustainable design pre-dates “Green” buildings, LEED, CHPS and Savings by Design. Our history of sustainable design began with the John Lyle Center for Regenerative Studies at Cal Poly Pomona. This research center was the first recipient of the SCE Savings by Design program, and won the AIA California Council Nathaniel Owens Award for Sustainable Design. Dougherty’s projects are LEED, CHPS, HPI or Savings by Design Certified or meet certification requirements. Our firm is committed to meeting the objectives of the 2030 Challenge and Net Zero.


The original firm of Dougherty + Dougherty was established 38 years ago by Betsey Olenick Dougherty, FAIA, LEED AP. Betsey was joined by husband and partner, Brian Dougherty, FAIA, LEED AP, two years later. In 2007, the firm opened the Oakland office to support statewide clientele. Both offices function as intimate, studio environments with a signature of personal service and responsiveness, quality design excellence and technical competence.