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Tricia Esser

Chief Executive Officer | Board of Directors

Tricia Esser


Tricia Esser is the Chief Executive Officer of KTGY, one of the nation’s leading full-service architecture, branding, interior design and planning firms. KTGY currently has more than 400 professional team members working in six offices: Chicago, Denver, Irvine, Los Angeles, Oakland and Tysons.


Ms. Esser has been CEO since 2006 and has navigated KTGY through the highs and lows of the real estate cycle since that time. In 2021, KTGY was ranked as the 19th largest architecture firm in the United States by the Building Design and Construction Magazine Giants 400 Survey. The firm ranks as the 4th largest multifamily architecture firm by the same survey.


Ms. Esser steers the firm with a practice of taking on no debt and has never reported a loss. Her strategic insight, direction and leadership have grown the firm’s strength, stability, depth of resources and dedication to continually searching for better.


The evolving firm is attracting and retaining some of the industry’s leading architects and planners. Listening and working collaboratively with likeminded national developers and local innovators on new construction and revitalization projects that seek to create a sense of place, KTGY’s 400 staff members are located in six offices in growing metropolitan markets in the
United States. She created and spearheads the firm’s proprietary executive training program, ELEVATE Leadership.


The firm has grown in stature and evolved significant practice areas under her tenure with award-winning client work ranging from city streets to master-planned destinations. KTGY is designing the neighborhoods of the future, innovating the places that people call “home.” KTGY established an R+D Studio dedicated to exploring the future of residential and mixed-use architecture. The firm created a Construction Innovation Group to explore new and future ideas in the changing world of construction technology.


She continues the firm’s dedication to giving back and mentoring young professionals through an annual summer internship program, as well as providing structure for staff volunteerism and company sponsorship of HomeAid, The Oakland Public Schools, ACE Mentor Program, and the National Association of Minority Architects (NOMA), and KTGY’s scholarship endowment at Cal Poly San Luis Obispo.


Bachelor of Arts in Communications
California State University, Fullerton
Fullerton, CA

Chapman University, Orange, CA

Stanford Executive Leadership Certificate,
Stanford Graduate School of Business


American Institute of Architects, AIA

Urban Land Institute (ULI)

Professional Involvement

AIA Large Firm Roundtable

AIA LFRT Executive Committee

Urban Land Institute, ULI

Vistage CEO Leadership Development