RMW Since


Jeff Leonhardt

  • Principal


Where did you go to school?
After extensive art, drafting, and CAD coursework at Sierra Junior College in Rocklin, California; architectural design courses at the University of Utah; I earned a Bachelor of Arts degree in interior design from California State University, Sacramento.

Anything, in particular, you remember about school or early practice?
When I landed my first job in architecture, the writing was on the wall that computer aided design was quickly becoming the status quo. I recognized sooner than most that if I hoped to have a meaningful career in architecture, I needed not only to understand how CAD worked, I needed to own it!  Although CAD was not an emphasis in the college classroom, I took a year of AutoCAD classes to become an early adopter and ultimately became what is referred to in the industry as a “super user.”

What do you do at RMW?
As a Managing Principal, I balance the daily studio management and client management responsibilities with project design. I also support the team with insight and direction on in-studio and firm-wide projects.

What do you like about the firm?
Mentorship goes full circle.  After over two decades with the firm, I am proud to continue RMW’s tradition of mentorship with a team of passionate and very talented individuals.

What do you do outside the firm?
Outside of work, I am just a regular guy who enjoys spending time my wife and kids.  Some might also be surprised to learn that I also greatly enjoy being a musician. Playing and composing music flexes my other creative muscles.  I have played in rock bands in the Sacramento area since the early 90s and currently play the piano, acoustic guitar, and the electric bass guitar.

Who is your role model and why?
My grandfather is and continues to be a huge inspiration to me.  He was a quintessential “Renaissance man” who started with nothing and went on to build his own multimillion-dollar printing company. He was also a gifted musician, restored antique clocks and repaired music boxes.  He greatly valued his family and relished in the satisfaction of working hard to achieve excellence.  He also had a great sense of humor and a keen wit.