Throughout the world, Gordon H Smith’s technical expertise and know-how have influenced the architecture of generations. As architectural styles have changed from steel framed high rise towers with punched openings in masonry and stone facades (Pennsylvania State Office Building) to the extruded glass architecture of city centers (Metropolitan Tower, New York City) through to the expressive conceptual use of façade as design statement (Los Angeles Concert Hall), Gordon H. Smith has been the principal enclosure consultant at the crossroads embracing innovation, identifying challenges and enabling the work. Trained in the family construction business, educated as an engineer, president of a curtain wall fabricator and leader of his own consulting firm, Gordon’s consultancy is uniquely comprehensive. His uncommon background enables understanding and empathy for every participant in the design, procurement, manufacture, installation and maintenance of the modern building enclosure.
Gordon is honored to have received an Institute Award from the American Institute of Architects (AIA). The citation reads:
One of the nation’s most qualified consultants on exterior wall systems, he has advanced to a significantly higher standard the design, fabrication, testing and installation of walls that meet their creator’s aesthetic, functional and budgetary requirements. AIA
Gordon H. Smith founded his consulting firm GHSC in 1975 after nearly 20 years on the contracting side of the building enclosure business, in the shop as a fabricator, in the field as an installer and as a draftsman, designer and then executive at Albro Metal Products Corporation. The firm, Gordon H. Smith Corporation is focused on providing to building owners and architects a benchmark for design, materials and installation of building enclosure systems. For more than 45 years Gordon has guided the GHSC team to deliver on that original premise.
With an unsurpassed work ethic, Gordon is read in to every project undertaken by his teams. Challenges, solutions and opportunities are each internally reviewed and validated by Gordon and the GHSC leadership. Work is reviewed for its adherence to quality standards and has Gordon’s consent before being produced for a client. Gordon’s hands-on approach and his reputation for experience, insight, acumen and diligence in the work of the building enclosure trades along with his unique candor has been recognized by his selection as consultant on new projects, investigator of façade failures, mediator and expert witness.
An industry stalwart, Gordon has excelled in influential positions in the building enclosure industry as it developed around him. His insight for complex challenges is enhanced by his broad prior professional experience. He has been a guest lecturer and shared his experiences at such universities as:
Virginia Polytechnic Institute
New York Institute of Technology
Yale University School of Architecture
Massachusetts Institute of Technology
and professional and trade associations such as:
American Institute of Architects
Construction Specifications Institute
American Society for Testing Materials
Chicago High-Rise Committee
American Architectural Metal Manufacturers Association
Glass Association of North America
Protective Glazing Council
Gordon’s notable professional achievements include pioneering the first GSA approved all aluminum unitized curtain wall in 1958 and serving as a member of the technical committee of the National Association of Architectural Metal Manufacturer (NAAMM) which developed the first curtain wall standards specification manual. Gordon was Vice President of Architectural Aluminum Manufacturer’s Association (AAMA now FGIA) and Chairman of AAMA Curtain Wall division when it developed today’s AAMA window and curtainwall quality and testing standards.
Since founding GHSC, Gordon’s focus has been on a consulting practice specializing in building enclosure systems. He is gratified by GHSC’s recent second recognition from the New York City Landmarks Conservancy with its award of Lucy G. Moses Preservation Project Award to the Moynihan Train Hall, a skylight project he participated in from concept to completion. The distinguished award compliments GHSC’s prior recognition with the Lucy G. Moses Award from the New York City Landmarks Conservancy for the restoration and preservation of Lever House.
GHSC continues to apply itself to everyday challenges facing the building community as well as contribute technical expertise to a broad spectrum of engagements and building types from investigating failed facades to exterior enclosure consulting of new buildings and globally recognized landmarks.
Mr. Smith is a graduate of Yale University School of Engineering, a Ford Foundation Scholar and licensed Professional Engineer.