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Carole Wedge, former Shepley Bulfinch President and CEO, retires after 37 years

Women in Design+Construction

Carole Wedge, former Shepley Bulfinch President and CEO, retires after 37 years

Wedge first began working at Shepley Bulfinch in the mailroom and became the firm’s first female President and CEO in 2004.

Shepley Bulfinch | April 5, 2023
Carole Wedge, former President and CEO, Shepley Bulfinch headshot
Wedge’s 37-year career at Shepley Bulfinch evolved a historic firm into a national design practice. Photo courtesy Shepley Bulfinch

After nearly 40 years at Shepley Bulfinch, including 17 as President and CEO, Carole Wedge, FAIA, LEED AP will be retiring on April 30th of this year. Beginning her journey at Shepley working in the mailroom in 1986, Carole went on to become Shepley’s first female President and CEO in 2004, leading the firm through nearly two decades of expansion and hundreds of prestigious and innovative architectural projects.

As President and CEO, Carole led Shepley Bulfinch’s expansion into a national presence, broadening the firm's portfolio through firm acquisitions, opening studios Phoenix in 2009, Houston in 2015, Hartford, Conn., in 2019, and Durham, N.C., in 2021.

Under her leadership, Shepley Bulfinch became a women-owned firm, was awarded the 2011 American Institute of Architects (AIA) National Diversity Recognition Award, and named 2020 ENR Southwest Design Firm of the Year. As the first LEED-certified principal at Shepley Bulfinch, in the early 2000s, Wedge led the firm to become a corporate member of the U.S. Green Building Council and a signatory to the American Institute of Architects (AIA) 2030 Challenge. Her emphasis on environmentally responsive design has ensured the integration of sustainable and resilient design throughout the work of the firm.

One of the hallmarks of Carole Wedge’s tenure at Shepley Bulfinch was her leadership as a role model for women in architecture and her enduring commitment to diversity, equity, and inclusion. She led a new generation that achieved certification as a women-owned and led business. The firm was named to the Commonwealth Institute’s Top 100 Women-Led Businesses annually from 2011 to 2022. Additionally, she is one of the seven women who founded the national AIA Women’s Leadership Summit in 2009, which today continues as an important catalyst for the advancement of women and BIPOC colleagues in the AEC industry. 

According to Carole, her own success is due to the culture that exists at Shepley Bulfinch, “There’s an attitude of generosity around mentorship at Shepley. People paid it forward for me, and I do think that you need to take that responsibility pay it forward for other people.”

In her retirement, she plans to continue supporting others as an executive coach and consultant. All of us at Shepley Bulfinch are grateful for Carole’s transformational leadership and wish her well as she embarks on her next adventure.

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