I’m a creative thinker and doer skilled at bringing innovative ideas to life. Driven by curiosity and connection, I believe in the power of design and communication to make our environment and our communities healthier, more sustainable, and more inclusive. With two decades of leadership experience in business and an ongoing commitment to volunteer and board roles, I focus on collaboration for positive impact.

My boundless curiosity about people’s stories of the cities they inhabit—and my belief that by sharing stories we increase understanding and connection—was the catalyst for the Five Places L.A. podcast, a living documentary of Los Angeles which I host and produce for the L.A. Forum for Architecture and Urban Design.

As founder-CEO of Panelite from 1998-2022, I led a resourceful, energetic team in the evolving field of sustainable architectural materials. Panelite developed four product lines, earned six U.S. patents, and led the building materials market in applying honeycomb technology to save energy, reduce greenhouse gas emissions, and improve occupant wellbeing. Panelite materials have been applied in thousands of built projects for end clients including Amazon, Audi, Boston Children’s Hospital, the Frick Museum, Google, Illinois Institute of Technology, Raleigh Union Station, Target, UC San Diego, and University of Rhode Island. Panelite has been extensively published and awarded and was featured in the Cooper-Hewitt National Design Museum’s 2006 Design Triennial alongside Apple, Boeing, Google, NASA, and Nike. Though we successfully weathered two major economic downturns, we closed the company in 2022 following unprecedented supply chain turbulence in the 2020 pandemic. I'm grateful for everything I learned while working with our brilliant clients and creative collaborators, and aim to apply my experience in sustainability and entrepreneurship to future endeavors.

My volunteer and board roles, as well as my freelance work, have further broadened my skills in communications, programming, and production. I was active for four years with AIA|LA, planning the annual Powerful conference and leading discussions on entrepreneurship in architecture. As a board member of the L.A. Forum for Architecture and Urban Design, I was VP of the Information Committee for three years, overseeing all outbound communications and supporting the public programming and events for which the Forum is renowned. Complex issues including environmentalism, ecosystem regeneration, Native land stewardship, the housing crisis, and social justice are central to the organization’s mission of instigating dialogue.

I’ve lived and worked in five cities and two languages (and counting) and joyfully pursue travel, nature, and art in all forms. I’m an avid reader with a love for languages, (despite?) having been raised by two French teachers who discussed etymology and syntax at dinner. I’m always looking to learn new things, most recently: skateboarding (with its beautiful implications for creativity, strategy, and resilience), Notion (as an organizational tool and database), growing an edible garden, and, like many of us, rapidly evolving issues around climate change and AI.

I am deeply motivated to contribute my creativity and experience to dynamic, collaborative projects for positive impact. Please reach out if you have one in mind!


University of California Los Angeles Anderson School of Management (Los Angeles, CA)

Executive Program in Management

Columbia University Graduate School of Architecture, Planning and Preservation (New York, NY)

Master of Architecture

Honor Award for Excellence in Design; William H. Kinne Fellowship Award

École Supérieure de Design Industriel (Paris, France)

Certificat de Design Industriel (product design program)

University of California at Berkeley, College of Environmental Design (Berkeley, CA)

Bachelor of Arts in Architecture with Highest Honors, Minor in French Literature

Image credits: Departures (E. Bourlier); Five Places L.A. graphic (collaboration: Emmanuelle Bourlier, Anali Gharakhani, Anne Predock); Panelite samples (E.Bourlier); Conwert Immobilien (design Buro fur Architektur /Heinz Lutter, photo Margherita Spiluttini); aluminum honeycomb core process; disembodied accidental selfie (E. Bourlier); stereolithography prototype for OMA’s sponge panels for Prada, Andreas Froech for Panelite (E. Bourlier); Panelite pixel panel (E. Bourlier); Panelite interactive presentation at Materials & Applications, Los Angeles; L.A. Forum for Architecture and Urban Design strategic planning retreat, 2023; Panelite resin edges (E. Bourlier); Panelite mockups and discussions (E. Bourlier); Panelite façade at Kaneko, Omaha, designed by HDR and Mark Mack (E. Bourlier); Panelite façade at the Climate Change Arena ticket booth, Seattle, designed by Populous (E. Bourlier); questioning the meaning of things (or, Bowie serendipity) via my son’s Story Cubes (E. Bourlier).