Lawrence R. Armstrong, LEED APChairman
Lawrence leads the Board of Directors for Ware Malcomb, and previously served as CEO from 1992 to 2020. He is an accomplished architect, business leader and artist.
Mr. Armstrong is Chairman of Ware Malcomb. Established in 1972, Ware Malcomb is an international design firm providing planning, architecture, interior design, branding, civil engineering and building measurement services to commercial real estate and corporate clients. With office locations throughout the United States, Canada, Mexico and Panama, the firm specializes in the design of commercial office, corporate, industrial, science & technology, healthcare, retail, auto, public/educational facilities and renovation projects. Ware Malcomb is recognized as an Inc. 5000 fastest-growing private company and a Hot Firm and Best Firm to Work For by Zweig Group. The firm is also ranked among the top 15 architecture/engineering firms in Engineering News-Record’s Top 500 Design Firms and the top 25 interior design firms in Interior Design magazine’s Top 100 Giants.
Mr. Armstrong is both an accomplished architect and strong business leader. He is well known for his strategic, visionary approach to the company’s management and growth, as well as his commitment to fiscal discipline to ensure the overall health of the firm. His strong design ability and focus on creativity and innovation greatly influence all aspects of the organization. His philosophy of embracing change and rewarding achievement and innovation has resulted in a highly successful, dynamic firm. In 2008, Mr. Armstrong was selected as an award winner for the Ernst & Young’s Entrepreneur of the Year Awards, Orange County/Desert Cities Region and was also a national finalist. In 2018 and 2019 he was selected to the prestigious OC 500, a list of the most influential leaders in the community by the Orange County Business Journal. Mr. Armstrong was also nominated as an Innovator of the Year in the Orange County Business Journal’s program recognizing OC innovators creating game-changing ideas and business models.
Mr. Armstrong joined Ware Malcomb in 1984 and shortly thereafter was responsible for running the firm’s Los Angeles office. In 1988, Mr. Armstrong was promoted to Principal of the firm, and then became CEO in 1992. In 2020, Mr. Armstrong transitioned to the role of Chairman of Ware Malcomb. In addition to expanding Ware Malcomb from a Southern California firm to a national and international firm with 25 offices in key markets across North America, Lawrence’s tenure as CEO is hallmarked by an unprecedented 40x revenue growth.
Mr. Armstrong is a licensed architect in over 45 U.S. states, as well as in the Canadian provinces of Alberta, British Columbia and Ontario. He received his Bachelor of Architecture Degree (1980) and Bachelor of Science in Architecture (1979) from Kent State University, where he also spent a semester studying abroad in Florence, Italy. Mr. Armstrong is a member of the National Council of Architectural Registration Boards (NCARB) and is a LEED Accredited Professional.
Mr. Armstrong is a guest lecturer for USC Lusk Center for Real Estate, Chapman University Argyros School of Business, and UCI’s The Paul Merage School of Business. In 2013, Mr. Armstrong was the keynote speaker at Kent State University’s Spring Commencement for the College of Architecture and Environmental Design. He has been published in a variety of media including OC Metro, OC Register, Orange County Business Journal, Real Estate Business Online, Coast Magazine, Modern Luxury and SIOR’s Professional Report, to name a few.
Mr. Armstrong is also an accomplished artist, including work in a variety of mediums such as paintings, furniture design and sculpture. To view his portfolio, please visit www.LRAart.com.
Mr. Armstrong’s current professional and charity affiliations include the following: Chair, Leadership Council, United to End Homelessness; Board of Directors, Orange County United Way; Co-Chair, Kent State University Comprehensive Campaign; Past Chair, Kent State University Foundation; Member, CEO Leadership Alliance-OC Executive Committee; Advisory Board Member, Chapman University Real Estate Program at the Argyros School of Business and Economics; Member, Ernst & Young EOY Alumni Advisory Council; NAIOP (National Association of Industrial & Office Properties) CEO Leadership Forum Member and National Forum Member (Trends in Real Estate Development II Forum); and International Executive Council for the Internet Marketing Association (IMA).
His previous professional and charity affiliations include: Guest Lecturer, USC Lusk Center for Real Estate, Graduate Real Estate Program 2008-2010; Past Member, Vistage; Advisory Board, Hall & Foreman; Past President, Vice President, Secretary, Board Member, CSP, 1999-2008; Advisory Board, Buzzsaw.com; The United Way Real Estate Steering Committee 1999-2006; Vice President, Board of Directors, Ballet Pacifica; Advisory Board Member, UCI Center for Real Estate; Chancellors Club at UCI; CHOC Corporate Partners; 2015 NAIOP YPG Case Competition Judge; SIOR (Society of Industrial and Office Realtors) Member; Advisory Board Member, Spaceez; Member, Visiting Committee, Hoag Center for Real Estate & Finance in the Argyros School of Business at Chapman University and Founding Member, United Way’s Real Estate Community Builders.