Philip K. White

PrincipalAIA 

Pip began his career in architecture nearly 40 years ago, inspired by an innate sense of aesthetics and environmental sensitivity coupled with personal values of integrity and resourcefulness. He founded Philip White Architects in 1983 – now known as WhiteSpace Architects – and instilled a spirit of purpose and a deep understanding of design.

Pip has developed a diverse portfolio of projects including custom homes, commercial centers, hotels, educational facilities and public spaces on every major Hawaiian island. His leadership as president of WhiteSpace Architects inspires consistently excellent award-winning work, but he maintains that assembling a team with a true depth and diversity of talent in every position to be his greatest achievement.

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As a seventh generation kama‘aina and keen traveler, Pip understands which design characteristics make Hawaiian architecture unique and appropriate for an island lifestyle. His signature style follows no established cast, as Pip believes that each project should uniquely reflect the needs of client and climate for a particular location. He acknowledges that architects are often entrusted with helping people realize their dreams, and is grateful for that privilege.

Pip is a family man, an active member of his community, and a thoughtful mentor. Through his leadership roles on several nonprofit boards including the University of Hawai‘i School of Architecture’s Asia Pacific Center for Architecture, the Hawai‘i Architectural Foundation and the American Institute of Architects, Honolulu Chapter (AIA Honolulu), he has helped shape the islands’ architectural community and many of its future leaders. Pip holds family, surfing, and his rambunctious Irish Setters dear to his heart.

Laura Ayers

PrincipalAIA, LEED AP BD+C

Laura has over two decades of experience in the field of architecture. Her exceptional design sense, tactful project management skills, and cheerful demeanor combine to benefit clients and drive colleagues toward brilliant design which exceeds client expectations.

After joining Philip White Architects in 2001 and partnering with Pip on many of the company’s most notable and award-winning commercial and residential projects, Laura’s commitment and talent earned her a leadership role in the firm. She is considered a rising star in sustainable design in Honolulu, leading seminars on green building technology and consistently incorporating LEED standards into projects.

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Laura leads her diverse team through the rigors of a demanding profession with a friendly smile and sense of humor. She is respected for her technical acumen, collaborative work style, and community involvement. Through organic mentoring and leadership workshops, Laura shares her expertise with young architects, developing their professional leadership skills, and encouraging them to become involved in their communities. When not in the office, she loves spending time with her husband and two children.

Laura received her B.S. in Architecture at Georgia Tech, and her Master of Architecture, summa cum laude, from the University of Michigan. Her undergraduate curriculum included a year at the prestigious École d’Architecture La Villette in Paris, France. She is also a member of AIA Honolulu and a LEED AP.

Elyse Takashige

Project Architect • AIA, LEED AP BD+C 

Elyse is an innovative, technically skilled architect.  She consistently develops efficient, creative, and effective solutions to complex challenges using design thinking principles. By focusing on comprehensive project management strategies, she undertakes every project with determination and a smile, striving to find ideal solutions for both the client and community.

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Born and raised in Hawaii, and a proud alumnus of McKinley High School, Elyse earned her Bachelor of Architecture from USC in 2012 and promptly returned to Oahu. She contributes to her community as a SEEQS board member and frequent mentor to the junior members of our firm.  When not in the office, Elyse is always looking for new things to learn and experience. She can usually be spotted in a dance class, a bowling alley, or attending local community theatre.

Tina Van Meenen

Project Manager Associate AIA

Tina Van Meenen has joined WhiteSpace Architects as a project manager, bringing 15 years of international design experience to the firm.

In that role, Tina is helping re-envision Punahou School’s existing Cooke Library into a 21st century learning commons for collaboration and study. She will also assist in the design of various local commercial, residential and institutional projects, including private and public educational facilities.

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As an architect in Belgium, Tina designed and supervised a wide array of commercial, institutional and residential projects, including the adaptive re-use of industrial spaces for housing and retail. Her residential experience spans both custom and large-scale, multi-family architectural design, as well as interiors and renovations.

Most recently, she served as a senior architect/project manager at Urban Platform in Brussels, specializing in architectural design and construction supervision of mixed projects, mostly residential and educational.

Tina received a Master of Architecture from Sint-Lucas Campus Ghent, part of KU Leuven Catholic University. A native of Belgium, Van Meenen speaks English, French and Dutch fluently. In her free time, Tina enjoys hiking with her family.

Craig Collado

Project Designer • Associate AIA

Craig first joined WhiteSpace as an intern in 2005, and then returned as a project manager in 2018. With a broad range of experience in luxury residences and commercial spaces, Craig has developed an effective work style, merging teamwork efficiencies with detail-oriented task management to meet project goals. He is an experienced draftsman and is always ready to advise junior members of the firm with technical challenges.  As a local, Craig gives back to his community through participation in Habitat for Humanity build days and regularly donates to the Blood Bank of Hawaii.

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Craig earned his Bachelor of Architecture from UH Manoa in 2001. Outside the office, he enjoys trying new restaurants and activities with his wife, and photography.

Ana Molinar-Ruiz

Project Designer • Associate AIA

Ana’s strong design sense, resourcefulness, and work ethic and have fueled her rapid professional development. She approaches every project as a unique puzzle and enjoys finding the best solution to meet client needs. Her versatility enables her to make significant design contributions to any project, from luxury homes to educational facilities.

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Ana earned her B.S. in Architecture, magna cum laude, from Texas Tech in 2012. After gaining experience, Ana was drawn to Hawaii by the Doctorate of Architecture program at UH Manoa. She graduated in 2017, interning at WhiteSpace since 2015, and is now a talented designer at our firm. Her passion is the study of vernacular and bioclimatic architecture – design that embraces and responds to the local environment – and its effects on human perception. Outside of work, Ana enjoys exploring Oahu’s mountains and beaches with her husband.

Keith Kato

Project Designer • Associate AIA

Keith Kato is the newest architectural designer to join to our team, but he has already made his mark helping design the Aiea High School girls’ athletic locker room and a number of private residences across Hawaii.

Before long, we hope to involve him in some of WhiteSpace’s commercial work, too.

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Born and raised in Indiana, Keith moved to Hawaii with his family after high school. Eventually settling on Kauai, he co-founded Rainy Day Farms, pursuing his passions for horticulture, diversified agriculture and apiculture.

While he was very happy running the diversified farm, Keith’s now-husband encouraged him to continue his education and realize his dream of becoming an architect. Over a six-year period, he received a Master of Architecture, Master of Business Administration and Bachelor of Arts in architecture (summa cum laude) from the University of New Mexico, Albuquerque.

With his family and in-laws on Kauai, Keith longed to return to Hawaii. And the rest is history, as they say: WhiteSpace Architects is very fortunate to have his talents as an architectural designer on our educational, residential and commercial projects.

During his free time, Keith can be found enjoying the outdoors with his husband and dog, hiking, riding their bikes and exploring Honolulu, “soaking up the embodied wisdom of the built environment,” as he explains.

Felice Geoghegan

Office Manager • 

Felice Geoghegan has joined WhiteSpace Architects as office manager, overseeing all administrative and operational functions. She also provides general support to our seven architects and designers.

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Originally from Sydney, Australia, Felice has lived in Honolulu for some two decades with her husband and children.

Outside of the office, Felice is an accomplished baker who shares her experiences with cookies, breads, cakes and other sweet and savory treats online. If you are intrigued by Espresso Banana Quick Bread with Espresso Streusel or Kladdkaka-Sticky Chocolate Cake, be sure to visit her popular blog “All That’s Left are the Crumbs”!