Neal Gerdes

Since early high school Neal has focused on architecture as his profession. While taking a house wiring class an assignment required him to create a floor plan of his home and determine which fuses controlled each outlet and light fixture. Seeing the floor plan of his home was like magic. He’s kept that passion alive and has had over 30 years of experience that has honed his talents in all aspects of design and construction. Size, scale, adjacencies, flow, spatial relationships, and function are a few of the thoughts that are always flowing through his mind as he designs spaces. In his free time, he doesn’t get too far away from his passions as he enjoys working on house projects: fixing, adding to, and remodeling his home. Neal holds both Bachelor’s and Master’s Degrees in Architecture from the University of Illinois at Urbana Champaign.


Sarah Gerdes

Sarah has always had an eye and love for design. She holds a Degree in Interior Design as well as both Bachelor’s and Master’s Degrees in Education. Sarah and her husband, Neal, opened AKL Architectural Services in 2002. Her holistic approach to design focuses on designing spaces which are functional and express each client’s individual style. She creates timeless, elegant, cohesive designs that balance the dramatic with modern, clean lines. When not working you’ll find Sarah spending time with her family and friends preferably outdoors and if at all possible, on, in or near any body of water.

Rory Foster

After growing up in Appleton, Wisconsin, Rory Foster earned his Bachelor of Science Degree in Mechanical Engineering from the University of Wisconsin, Plattville and a Construction Management Degree from IIT Technical Institute. Over the years that he has been with AKL he has taken on the primary role of creating construction drawings yet is well-versed in 3-D model building. Rory’s interest in architecture was sparked during his high school engineering class where he created a truss out of balsa wood and tested it to see how much weight it could hold. Outside of work he enjoys learning to play new and increasingly complicated music on one of his 6 guitars of which the Jackson San Dimas soloist is his favorite.


Aldo Valdes

Aldo Valdes earned his Bachelor of Science Degree in Architecture from the University of Wisconsin, Milwaukee and accepted a full-time position with AKL after completing his internship with us. He found his fascination with architecture when he was in elementary school and saw the exit floor plans for his grade school which intrigued him and ignited his desire to learn more about the building industry. Inspired by his parents who work in real estate and construction he was able to build his architectural knowledge base from a young age gaining a strong background in remodeling residential projects. Renderings and 3-D drawings are Aldo’s specialty bringing our firm further into the digital age. Aldo loves sports, especially basketball as he stands a 6’-5” tall! He spends most of his free time with his family and friends and is always trying to find an available court to play on.

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