LEAD is founded on design principles of simplicity and elegance. We pride ourselves on our collaboration, leadership & attentive service.Our work is detail oriented and carefully crafted to the unique requirements and context of every project. Our team brings together skills in fabrication, interiors, and bespoke architecture to deliver unique and elegant spaces with a crafted sense of place, time and context. We thrive in the optimism that all of our projects can be exceptional when we do our best: guide our clients through on an inventive path filled with ambition.


Otto Ruano AIA  NCARB  |  Principal

Otto has passion for design driven architecture and believes in crafting spaces carefully and thoughtfully. Prior to founding LEAD, he started his career in high end metal fabrication with Milgo Bufkin where he learned about precisely crafting together materials to make sculptures, facades, and large scale installations of extraordinary complexity. He worked on projects for SHoP, Zaha Hadid, SOM, KPF, Steven Holl, Frosty Meyers, Robert Indiana, and many other artists, architects, and designers. After several years of working in metal fabrication he joined Ohlhausen DuBois Architects where he worked on large scale high end residential projects and institutional projects for NYU and The New School.  Otto, a graduate of Pratt Institutes School of Architecture,  is invested in teaching the next generation of Architects and has been teaching at his alma mater since 2007 and regularly participates in the school's curriculum development. 

Erik Simon  AIA  LEED  NCARB  | Principal

Erik's career has been focused on residential and institutional projects that share a common goal of creating quiet, elegant, and thoughtful designs. Erik believes in the positive impact that design can provide homes, work-spaces and learning environments.  He began his post graduate career in 2006 as a Project Architect with Ben Hansen Architects,  followed by a Senior Associate position at Ohlhausen DuBois Architects. During his tenure at Ohlhausen DuBois Architects, he led some of the firm’s largest and most challenging projects through design and construction, including large scale private residences, institutional, and educational projects, and a two story gut of office spaces at New York City's Empire State Building. During his graduate program at UPenn, Erik won the Van Alen Traveling Fellowship where he explored civic architecture throughout Europe.  Erik has served as a guest critic at UPENN, Pratt, and NJIT.