Steven M. Nilles


Steve Nilles is the partner in charge of the firm’s Abu Dhabi office. In this capacity, he leads the firm’s activities in the United Arab Emirates and other Gulf States, and he serves as the managing partner on projects throughout the region. In addition to leading and managing large-scale projects, Mr. Nilles is a skilled technical designer, specializing in high-rise buildings that integrate technically advanced engineering concepts, innovative use of materials, and sustainable design strategies. He has worked on projects throughout the U.S. as well as in China, the Czech Republic, Germany, Poland, Saudi Arabia, and the UAE.

Select recent projects include the five-building Sowwah Square complex and a separate office building, both located in Abu Dhabi; the 900-key Hilton Riyadh Hotel & Residence in Saudi Arabia; and the Wyndham Grand Riyadh, a 214-key hotel, also in Saudi Arabia in the massive King Abdullah Financial District. Other recent work includes three 50-story office towers in Chicago—111 South Wacker, UBS Tower and 155 North Wacker—and Charles Square Center, a prominent office building in Prague, Czech Republic.

Mr. Nilles received a professional Bachelor of Science degree in architecture from the University of Notre Dame. Prior to joining the firm in 1998, he served as the director of production at Murphy/Jahn. During his 16 years at that firm, he completed a number of key projects, including several premier assignments in Germany: the Munich Airport Center, the related Kempinski Hotel, and the Sony Center at Potsdamer Platz in Berlin.

In 2012, Mr. Nilles was elected to the distinguished College of Fellows of the American Institute of Architects. He has received the AIA Chicago Divine Detail Award four times, as well as the first Chicago Innovation Award given to an architect.

In addition to being a member of the AIA and a registered LEED Accredited Professional, Mr. Nilles is a member of the Chicago Committee on High Rise Buildings, the Council on Tall Buildings and Urban Habitat, and the NFPA High-Rise Building Safety Advisory Council.