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Paul and Milena Murdoch, Designers of 9/11 Memorial

"Beauty that Inspires and Endures"


Milena Murdoch explains Flight 93 National Memorial Design in 2005 with Paul Murdoch

Milena Murdoch explains Flight 93 National Memorial Design in 2005 with Paul Murdoch

Photo by Chip Somodevilla/Getty Images News Collection/Getty Images (cropped/resized)

Husband and wife team Paul and Milena Murdoch became famous for their winning 9/11 design for the Flight 93 National Memorial in Shanksville, Pennsylvania. In southern California, however, the couple is well-known for their designs of civic and public areas, including schools and libraries.

Paul Murdoch's Education:

  • 1970s, University of Virginia, Bachelors Degree
  • 1984, University of California, Los Angeles (UCLA), Masters in Architecture

Paul Murdoch's Professional Life:

  • Geddes Brecher Qualls and Cunningham, Philadelphia, Pennsylvania (2 years)
  • Arthur Erickson, Los Angeles, California (civic and public buildings, university and research facilities)
  • 1987, registered architect, California
  • Charles Moore, Los Angeles, California (Beverly Hills Civic Center, 1992)
  • 1991, Paul Murdoch Architects, Beverly Hills

Milena Murdoch's Education:

  • Brandeis University, Bachelor of Fine Arts (Summa Cum Laude)
  • University of California, Los Angeles (UCLA), Master of Architecture (Summa Cum Laude)

Milena Murdoch's Professional Life:

  • Albert C. Martin & Associates, with Tim Vreeland designed educational facilities at Chapman University, Caltech, UCLA, and Whittier
  • 1995, registered architect, California
  • 1997, with Richard Meier on Harold Williams Auditorium at the Getty Center
  • 2000, with Ted Tokio Tanaka, LAX Gateway Enhancement
  • 2001, joined Paul Murdoch Architects

Principle Works of Paul Murdoch Architects:

The Whole is Greater Than Its Parts:

The professional experience they individually bring to their partnership has created a marriage of ideas, creativity, and vision. Both architects have been practicing together since 2001 and frequently lecture at universities in southern California.

Architects of Healing:

In May 2012, the American Institute of Architects (AIA) honored over 100 architects involved in 9/11 memorials and rebuilding. Both Murdochs were cited as "architects of healing." Milena Murdoch received an AIA Presidential Citation and Paul Murdoch was one of fifteen architects receiving a specially commissioned gold medallion.

In The Words Of Paul Murdoch:

"Design beauty that inspires and endures"—LinkedIn professional profile

"I've seen through the process how powerful a vision can be, and how challenging it can be to carry that vision through a process. And I know every architect out there knows what I'm talking about. That what we do is unreasonable. It's trying to bring something positive through so many barriers to them, that I guess I would just want to tell architects that it's worth it. It's worth that effort."—Flight 93 National Memorial video, AIA, 2012

"We feel the most sustainable forms are those that emerge through a process of willful disclosure. By enhancing the qualities latent in a place and inherent in human activity, a design acquires vitality in form. The nature of context and activities evolve over time, so design must be both original in its derivation and adaptable."—Philosophy, Paul Murdoch Architects

Sources for this Article:

[websites accessed July 15, 2012]

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