Gloria Carlson, CKD, UDCP
Harrell Design + Build Senior Designer, Gloria Carlson, discovered her passion for design in 2001 when her own home was being remodeled. She was so enthralled by the design process, she asked her contractor if she could work for him. After her remodeling experience and some time away from the workforce to raise her two children, Gloria decided to earn certifications in Interior Design, Kitchen/Bath Design, Residential/Commercial Design and Green/Sustainable Design at Cañada College rather than return to her prior career in Speech Technology.
Gloria’s favorite quote is one by Steve Jobs, “Design is not just what it looks like and feels like. Design is how it works.” She prides herself on listening to her clients, understanding their needs and lifestyle, which enables her to provide designs that are appropriate to how they live and the overall design of their homes.
With a firm belief that all relationships should be based on mutual respect and trust, Gloria’s practical approach to her projects, creative style, responsiveness, and attention to both budget and detail all play a huge part in her client’s satisfaction.
“Remodeling one’s home can be stressful, so I try to make the process as fun as possible,” says Gloria. “I listen carefully to the homeowner’s desires, whether functional, aesthetic or budgetary, and come up with a plan that will work for them. Then, throughout the project, they know they can count on me to respond quickly to questions and help with decisions.”
Before joining Harrell Design + Build in 2013, Gloria worked as a Designer in a Kitchen and Bath showroom, and now she enjoys designing projects of all sizes, from a small bathroom update to whole house interior and exterior remodels and additions. Gloria especially enjoys working on kitchen remodels, so much so that she focused on this specialty, earning the title of Certified Kitchen Designer (CKD) from the National Kitchen and Bath Association. More recently, recognizing the importance of accessibility and Universal Design, she further trained, earning the title of Universal Design Certified Professional (UDCP) from the National Association of the Remodeling Industry.
“Although I enjoy many different types of projects, my favorites tend to be kitchen remodels, especially for clients who like to cook, since this is something I also enjoy. I love designing features that optimize functionality as well as maximize the aesthetic appeal. I particularly love working on projects where clients are looking for custom, not cookie-cutter, features,” explains Gloria.
She has won numerous awards for her designs from the NKBA (National Kitchen and Bath Association) and NARI (National Association of the Remodeling Industry) and has had her designs featured in several local and national publications.
As one of Harrell Design + Build’s employee-owners, Gloria is an integral part of the collaborative talent, creativity, and energy that goes into every client’s project. She has experienced first-hand how the culture of ownership makes everyone feel that they have a stake in the results of their work and the reputation of the company. “I believe that being an owner makes each of us take pride in the quality of work we produce, and we are motivated to help others that are all part of the same team.”
Outside of work, Gloria loves to cook and play tennis, and being a “foodie,” enjoys everything epicurean. She was an active member of the PTA when her children were young, served on multiple Boards, and has served on the Stanford University reunion planning committee, from which she holds two degrees. Gloria enjoys traveling to new and different locations where she can experience great food, nature and architecture along with interesting culture and history. A coffee-lover, Gloria is especially fond of espresso drinks and will never turn down a latte!