Selected Architects

George D. Rand

           George D. Rand was one of the first major architects in the building history of the College. Born in Coventry, Vermont on May 24, 1833, Rand obtained his early education in Brownington and St. Johnsbury. During the early years of his life, Rand started working on a newspaper in Johnsbury and later became editor of the Caledonian.  Around the same time, he continued his studies on architecture and in 1861 he started practicing in Hartford, Connecticut. In 1881, Rand formed a partnership with Bertrand E. Taylor. Rand’s style was known for its connection with Queen Anne’s detailing, steeply pitched rooflines, and turned columns. He was hired to design the early Rollins buildings such as the Knowles Hall (1886), Pinehurst Cottage (1886), Lakeside Cottage (1886), and Lyman Gymnasium (1890).


Henry D Whitfiled

           Henry D Whitfield of New York, brother to Mrs. Andrew Carnegie was responsible for the design of Carnegie and Chase Halls in the early years of the 1900s.


Ralph Adam Cram

Ralph Adam Cram (1863-1942) of Boston was the architect of the Knowles Memorial Chapel at Rollins College. During the early twentieth century, Cram’s artistic work had a profound impact on a variety of college buildings nationwide such as chapels and libraries he designed at the Rice Institute, Sweet Briar, West Point, Notre Dame, the University of Southern California, Williams and Princeton. 

The defining theme of Cram was his emphasis on Gothic revival. Nonetheless, for his early work he found inspiration in the 15th-16th century English architecture. Cram implemented his ideas in the following churches: St. Thomas in New York, East Liberty Presbyterian in Pittsburgh, and the Cathedral of St. John the Divine. These churches are characterized by a sheer display of mass and proportion, interchangeable use of light and shadows, arcades, vaults, details. In addition, Cram refrained himself from embodying extensive decorative details in his designs. 

Ralph Adams Cram’s personal interest in “transitional Gothic” gave him special pleasure in designing the Knowles Memorial Chapel, which was one of his favorites. After its completion, Cram visited Winter Park annually and attended services in the Chapel. On February 20, 1838, Cram made a special presentation to the Animated Magazine, and received an honorary doctorate from Rollins College. Upon hearing of Cram’s passing in 1942, President Franklin Roosevelt lamented, “A towering figure has been lost to our cultural life.”


Kiehnel and Elliott

             The firm of Kiehnel and Elliot was originally established in Pittsburgh, Penn., in 1906 with Richard Kiehnel as the designer. Kiehnel was a member and president for two years of the Pittsburgh Architectural Club of the American Institute of Architects. In 1922?, Kiehnel became the head designer in charge of the firm, which had then established its permanent offices in Miami and Pittsburgh. In 1934, the firm welcomed the arrival of George H. Spohn and Henry P. Whitworth. Among the most notable designs of the Kiehnel and Elliott were the Snell building, Miami Senior High School, and several hotels in Miami.

             Richard Kiehnel was the chief architect responsible for fully implementing the Spanish Mediterranean style throughout the Rollins College campus. He sought to parallel the appearance of Rollins buildings with that of a medieval Spanish Monastery. Kiehnel used tile roof, arches, massive columns, and patios to imbue his buildings with a sense of small city in Mediterranean Spain. The campus buildings Keihnel and Elliott designed included: Rollins Hall (1929), Pugsley and Mayflower Halls (1930), Annie Russell Theatre (1932), Gale, Lyman and Fox Halls (1936), Cross and Hooker Halls (1937), Woolson House (1938), Strong Hall and Faculty Club (1939), Alumni House, Student Center and French House (1941).


George H. Spohn

             George H. Spohn, a native of Binghampton, moved to Winter Park from Miami in 1945. A member of the Presbyterian Church in Winter Park, American Institute of Architects, and Winter Park Kiwanis Club among others, Spohn had an important influence in designing a handful of Rollins buildings such as the Warren Administration Hall (1946), Corrin Hall and Sullivan House (1947), and Orlando Hall (1948).  In 1983-84, he combined his architectural work with Gamble Rogers II to design the Olin Library.  Spohn had also extended his influence in the many other projects in Central Florida such as the Lutheran Haven at Slavia in Oviedo, local schools, and churches.


James Gamble Rogers II (1901- 1990)

              Primarily focused on the private residences, James Gamble Rogers II was one of the early architects in Winter Park. His architectural style was to allow buildings fully adapt to the Florida climate and geography. For instance, he designed deeply recessed windows to aid cross-ventilation. Rogers also employed used materials to not only reduce costs, but also give the buildings the appearance of old worn-out structures. His work embraced a Romantique style, which projected into the picturesque buildings on the Rollins campus. Rogers and his architectural firm were responsible for the design of the Mills Memorial Library (1951), Elizabeth Hall (1959), McKean Hall (1962), Crummer Hall (1965), Holt Hall (1966), Bush Science Center (1968), Ward Hall (1969), the Olin Library (1985), and Cornell Social Science Center (1987).


Schweizer & Associates

            Nils M. Schweizer was the chief architect of Schweizer Associates. In addition to helping design the most important projects of his firm, Schweizer has also served amongst many statewide committees concerned with environmental and energy related issues. His design was greatly influenced by the architectural style of Frank Lloyd Wright, with whom he studied in the Taliesin Fellowship program. Believing that the environment plays an important role in one’s overall wellness, Schweizer provided great emphasis to the natural environment in his projects. Schweizer was responsible for the design of Keene Hall and Facilities Management Building (1974).


Shepley, Bulfinch, Richardson and Abbott

             The firm of Shepley, Bulfinch, Richardson and Abbott designed the Cornell Campus Center (1999) and Rice Family Bookstore and Café (2000) at Rollins College. Among their other designs nationwide are the Higgins Hall at the Boston College, the Children’s Hospital in Boston, the Butler Library renovation at the Columbia University, and the Allan P. Kirby Sports Center at the Lafayette College.


Chael, Cooper & Associates

              The architectural firm of Chael, Cooper and Associates features a distinctive urban-style architectural rendering in their designs. In the early 2000s, the company cooperated with Rollins College for the design and construction of the Marshall and Vera Lea Rinker building located at the corner of Park and Fairbank Avenues. Under the leadership of Marice Chael and Tom Cooper, the firm has over fifty years in private and public architectural projects. Some other significant projects designed by the Chael, Cooper & Associates include the Amster building in South Miami, the Miami Metro rail garage, and other mixed-use buildings in South Florida.



              The architectural firm of RTLK is an international company of architects that effectively adapts to the needs of its clients through various architectural styles and services. Over the years the firm has successfully engaged in businesses such as revitalization projects, suburban developments, and historic preservations programs in the U.S., China, England and other countries. At Rollins, RTLK designed the SunTrust plaza and garage on Park Avenue.