Roland Terry

Major New Lighthouse Facility on a Rocky Headland, 500 feet above the sea at Camp Mendocino, 1937.

Roland Terry

Design drawing: gouache/watercolor with graphite and ink on paper.

Digital Collection item #ARC0896; URL:,1848

Roland Terry (1917-2006) was a leading Pacific Northwest architect from the 1950s to the 1990s. He was a prime contributor to the regional approach to Modern architecture created in the Northwest in the post-World War II era. He received his B.Arch from the University of Washington in 1940. During his years at Washington he benefited from the mentorship of faculty member Lionel Pries.

Following graduation, he was awarded the Langley Scholarship from the AIA and traveled to South America to study the region's early Modern buildings. He joined the military after returning to the United States (1942-6), where he designed and constructed an Officers' Club in New Mexico. He returned to Seattle in 1946 and formed Tucker, Shields, and Terry (1948-51) with classmates Bert Tucker and Robert Shields. The firm designed custom houses, restaurants and other small buildings, usually in wood and other natural materials, and began to emerge as leaders in Northwest regional Modern architecture. Notable works include the Burnett House on Hunts Point (1950); Canlis Charcoal Broiler, Seattle (1951); and the Paul Smith remodel in Seattle (1950). Terry left the partnership in 1949 to study painting in Paris.

Terry formed a partnership with Philip A. Moore, which became Terry and Moore, Architects, Seattle (1952-60). They designed a number of widely published residences and commercial projects in Seattle. Notable among them are the Crabapple Restaurant, Bellevue, (1954); Alex Patterson House, Whidbey (1958); Hauberg town house, Seattle (1954), and the Jarvis house, Seattle (1957).

When the firm dissolved, Terry opened his own practice as Roland Terry & Associates (1960-74), and continued to design notable houses and other structures, as well as restaurants and other interiors in Seattle, San Francisco and Honolulu. Notable projects include the Washington Park Towers in Seattle (1967); the Kahala Hilton interior, Honolulu (1963); and Nordstrom Best, (1970).

As the firm's focus shifted from residential to commercial, he promoted associate Robert Egan to Partner (1974 ) and the firm was Terry & Egan until Terry's retirement in 1987. Projects from that period include the Bank of California Building interior (1972); and the Halekulani Hotel interior, (1980). Terry was elected to the AIA College of Fellows in 1980, and received the AIA Seattle Chapter medal in 1991.