Senior Principal, Global Chair, Founder / Kansas City
Earl Santee is an urban designer first and an architect second. His philosophy is that urban sites shape the buildings he designs, and that these buildings are more than just form — they capture the spirit and emotion of the place, creating distinct, authentic moments that last for the millions of fans who visit his venues.
Earl is one of the most widely acclaimed sports designers in the world, known for his intuitiveness and insightfulness. Throughout his more than 30-year career, Earl has developed a portfolio of award-winning projects that have helped bring urban life back to cities across the Americas.
From modern Miami to gritty Pittsburgh to an emerging campus in Waco, none of Earl’s projects follow the same formula. What makes his designs influential and spectacular are the way they relate to and draw together their communities around sport. Through careful and strategic analysis of community, culture, sites and market, Earl provides insightful design direction for projects around the world.
His experience on more than 60 projects includes iconic examples of urban design, placemaking, trendsetting, tradition and sustainable design that have transformed cities and forever changed the fan experience. His designs have served as an inspiration for a new type of sports experience — one that is an extension of a city, community and culture.
Earl was instrumental in guiding the firm in its transition to a new brand in 2009. Prior to his role as global chair, Earl served a four-year term as America’s managing director. He is also a frequent speaker and author on trends in sports architecture.