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Managing Partner

After more than two decades working in New York City with the firms HOK and Hardy Holzman Pfieffer Associates, and in St. Louis with Arcturis, John founded JEMA in 2010. 

John has built a reputation as one of the region's strongest design talents, having produced multiple award-winning projects. He has experience leading complex and multi-disciplinary teams on high profile projects. His extensive portfolio includes corporate headquarters, municipal and governmental institutions, schools, university buildings, performing arts centers, community centers, multi-family residential, hospitality, medical office buildings and health care clinics across the United States.

Actively involved in the planning, design, and detailing of every JEMA project, John is a passionate advocate for community building and sustainable design. He maintains that great design is about creating environments that enrich and promote well-being. This philosophy of creating wellness for clients, community, and the environment pervades all of JEMA's designs and is the foundation of the firm. 

John is a St. Louis native, and is devoted to numerous civic and charitable efforts, including having served two terms as a board member for Grace Hill Settlement House. In addition to his work at JEMA, John has been a guest lecturer at the Sam Fox School of Design & Visual Arts at Washington University.

John studied architecture at the University of Kansas and Denmark International Study Program in Copenhagen. He is a LEED accredited professional with the United States Green Building Council and is a registered architect. He is a member of the American Institute of Architects (AIA), National Council of Architectural Registration Boards (NCARB), and a member of SAVE (Structural Assessment & Visual Evaluation) for the State of Missouri Emergency Management Association. 

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Jon Emert, LEED AP, SAVE

With over a decade of experience, Jon has led the technical delivery of some of the largest and most complex projects in the St. Louis region. He is adept at the detailing and delivery of projects ranging from a few thousand to over 300,000 square feet. 

Jon has worked extensively with many Fortune 500 companies and city governments in delivering successful projects throughout the region. He is a self-confessed perfectionist and is committed to technical excellence.Every project at JEMA sees direct involvement from Jon, from the earliest design concepts to hands-on resolution of construction details. He is passionate about the firm's commitment to sustainable design practices and delivering projects that enhance the human experience through the built environment. Jon also oversees the implementation of technology solutions at JEMA.

Jon studied architecture at the University of Kansas and Denmark International Study Program in Copenhagen. He is a LEED accredited professional with the United States Green Building Council and a member of SAVE (Structural Assessment & Visual Evaluation) for the State of Missouri Emergency Management Association. 

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Steve has worked at JEMA for 5 years and has collaborated with John Mueller for over 15 years. Steve supervises each of JEMA’s projects from beginning to end, ensuring that the team has the necessary support to execute project deadlines and goals on time and on budget. Steve’s communication skills and management abilities have been instrumental in materializing some of JEMA’s most visionary projects. His capacity for leading large team collaborations and his thoroughness in all phases of the work is recognized by clients, design teams, and contractors alike. Steve oversees construction documentation, coordination, and administration on all projects.

Steve has a M. ARCH from Washington University in St. Louis, MO.

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Chip joined JEMA 5 years ago, but has been collaborating with John Mueller for over 20 years. Chip manages and leads some of JEMA’s largest accounts, including Centene and Panera Bread. His twenty-five years of experience leading project teams spans various building types and has allowed him to create an expertise in designing and managing multiple concurrent projects nation-wide.

Chip has a B. ARCH from the University of Kansas and also a Masters of Fine Art (M.F.A.) from the University of Missouri St. Louis in creative writing. In addition to being an architect, Chip is also a published author and an accomplished artist and illustrator.

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DIRECTOR - operations

Bodil is from Copenhagen, Denmark, but has been living in the US for the last 25 years. Having worked in New York city as the Cultural Officer at the Danish Consulate, as well as managing the offices of the renowned firm of Manhattan Design, Bodil brings a fresh perspective to JEMA. She leads the firm's financial and administrative operations.

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Molly Studer joined JEMA in 2019, bringing with her over 17 years of experience in the real estate industry including both commercial and residential property management, leasing/brokerage, marketing, project management and operations. Her role at JEMA focuses on client relations, new business development, brand awareness, and strategic company growth. Molly has a B.A. from the University of Missouri - Columbia and is a licensed real estate broker. She is active in several industry organizations including Commercial Real Estate Women (CREW) where she currently serves as the Membership Co-Chair.

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Contact Number: 314.749.5102


Jon McKee, aia
director, jema east

Jon graduated from Connecticut College with a bachelor's degree in philosophy and a minor in art and psychology. He went on to Washington University where he earned his master's of architecture and master's of construction management degrees. He came to JEMA with an expertise in Building Information Modeling (BIM). Having managed some of JEMA’s most visionary and award-winning projects such as MOFO and Volpi, Jon is responsible for JEMA East located in Newark, NJ. His responsibilities include operations and business development in the tri-state area of New Jersey, New York and Connecticut. Jon will continue to be involved with project management firm-wide, but in his new role he is uniquely positioned to bring JEMA joy to new markets on the East coast.

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Thad leads JEMA’s research and development as well as the firm’s lighting design. He is responsible for strengthening and enhancing the firm’s built work through the incorporation of novel ideas, methods, and products into all aspects of architectural and lighting solutions.  With involvement at all phases of project development, Thad weaves a thread of innovation, holistic thinking, and design consistency into all JEMA projects.  He shares his knowledge of the latest developments in building technology, materials, illumination techniques, and industry research to inspire architectural work of the highest design standards.

Lighting Design Awards

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Kenneth J. Amsler, AIA
Architect & Quality Control

Ken Amsler has over 30 years of experience in architecture. He was the project architect for the complex and distinguished campuses of Maritz and Wells Fargo in St. Louis. He directs JEMA's quality control efforts and processes. He is involved in all of JEMA's interior design and architectural projects assuring the highest level of quality. He is also the firm's specification professional.  Ken is a registered architect in Missouri



Paola graduated with a bachelors degree in Architecture from the Polytechnic University of Puerto Rico.Prior to joining JEMA, Paola worked for Hastings+Chivetta Architects in higher education projects, ranging from places of worship to collegiate athletic and wellness facilities.

Paola has a special expertise in architectural visualization representations, developing 2D, 3D and VR as well as video walk/fly through using Sketchup/Revit, Lumion/Enscape and After Effects.

Paola is a member of the Steering Committee and Communication Committee of the AIA St. Louis Women in Architecture Forum.

Paola is also an active volunteer for Canstruction in St. Louis, promoting a unique charity food drive for the design industry. 


Michael Barkoviak, LEED AP BD+C

Mike graduated from the University of Illinois with dual masters in architecture & construction management. He is an expert in numerous programs including Revit, Sketchup, AutoCad, and Adobe Creative Suite. He has participated in project phases from schematic design to construction administration. He worked previously at Trivers Associates, where he was involved in a variety of project types including higher education, multi-family housing, civic, and adaptive reuse.  

Mike is a LEED accredited professional with the United States Green Building Council and is on his path to becoming a licensed architect.

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Jeehyun Choi, leed ap bd+c, ArchitectURAL DESIGNER

JC graduated from UC Berkeley with a bachelor’s degree in architecture and minors in sustainable design and city and regional planning. She recently graduated from Washington University in St. Louis with dual master's degrees in architecture and construction management. Throughout her graduate studies, she worked as a teaching assistant and an intern, working closely with architects and project managers. Now she is on the path to becoming a registered architect.

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Kellee Cook

Kellee graduated from University of Missouri, St. Louis with a Bachelor's Degree in Psychology, and then continued her education at Washington University in St. Louis. She graduated in 2015 with a Master's of Applied Health and Behavior Research, with an emphasis in health education, program planning, and evaluation. Kellee has been working in accounting and business solutions services for over 4 years.


Dylan Draves, LEED AP, BD+C
Intern Architect

Dylan is a masters of architecture student at Washington University in St. Louis. His undergraduate degree is from University of Texas at Austin in interior design. Dylan also attended SCI-Arc for one year. Dylan previously worked for HOK in Houston and Los Angeles in both interior design and architecture.  Dylan has experience working on corporate and healthcare projects.

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Liz graduated from the University of Kansas with a Master of Architecture. She previously worked for LS3P in Charleston, SC, in their commercial sector, and interned with Ware Malcomb in San Diego, CA. She has experience with various project types, including commercial, civic, multi-family housing, retail, and healthcare. Liz is now on the path to becoming a licensed architect.


Kristin Kendrick, AIA, LEED GA

Kristin graduated from the University of Cincinnati with a Master of Architecture degree. Prior to joining JEMA, Kristin worked primarily in the corporate tenant improvement market as a project designer. She has a passion for tackling design challenges, enjoys working with clients to define their unique objectives and develop detailed solutions.

Kristin is a Registered Architect in Ohio.  

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Adolfo initially received architecture training at the University of the Philippines. He then traveled the world proudly serving in the United States Navy. Upon completing two tours in the military he continued his educational pursuits and received a Bachelor of Design in Architecture Degree at the University of Florida and a Master’s Degree in Architecture from Washington University in St. Louis.

His keen design sense paired with a mastery of 3D modelling and architectural visualization have been pivotal in communicating many of JEMA’s innovative design concepts.



Francisco graduated with a Bachelor of Architecture from the Illinois Institute of Technology in Chicago. His interest in fabrication, design, and preservation, has led him to take on a variety of different roles throughout his career that range from designer of tensioned fabric aluminum structures, to buildings and operations assistant at IIT’s College of Architecture during the renovation of Mies’ Crown Hall.  His passion for architecture and education led him to work as an adjunct faculty at Wright College’s architectural program, and as a docent for the Mies van der Rohe Society.

Prior to joining JEMA, Francisco worked at Casco+R5, in commercial retail as architectural project manager for as-built projects. He was also responsible for the project management along with construction documentation for electrical installations of a national retailer's special projects program. 


Rachel Reinhard
Intern Architect

Rachel graduated from the University of Maryland with a bachelors degree in architecture and a minor in sustainability studies. She is currently pursuing dual degrees in architecture and urban design as a masters candidate at Washington University in St. Louis. Rachel has over six years of experience working both domestically and internationally, gaining skills in exhibition design, project management, residential design, fabrication, and urban design.

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Intern Architect

JEMA is pleased to announce that Wendy Stradley will be joining JEMA as a Summer Intern. Wendy is in her final year at Washington University in St. Louis, MO where she is studying for her Masters in Architecture and Landscape Architecture. She has a Bachelor degree from the University of Florida.