Gail Zylkowski Merth, AIA, LEED AP BD+C

Project Architect

I find that engaging with educators and school staff, and being able to advocate for the best possible learning environments is the most rewarding aspect of my work. As both an architect and certificated middle level Science and Humanities teacher, I know firsthand what an important (and challenging) role our teaching community fills. My passion for school design excellence translates into better spaces for educators to teach and students to thrive.

Before taking over as President of the AIA SWW in 2017, it was my goal to increase our profession’s community outreach, specifically by mentoring students interested in pursuing careers in architecture and design. Through this work with the board, we now have an ACE Mentor program in Tacoma. Due to my leadership, the AIA SWW is also partnering with the Tacoma Art Museum to host a summer camp for kids in the 2nd through 8th grade in which they design a city, build models and learn 3D computer software. I’m thankful to be able to combine my two areas of study – architecture and teaching – to make a difference in the lives of both young people and the dedicated people who facilitate life-long learning.


Bachelor of Architecture, University of Minnesota
Bachelor of Environmental Design, University of Minnesota
Licensed Architect; Washington