Robert Gramann Announces Retirement

GBBN Architects Chairman Robert Gramann Announces His Retirement;
Will Remain as Chairman Emeritus of the GBBN Board of Directors

Mr. Gramann’s career at GBBN started in 1965 when he was hired as a University of Cincinnati Co-op student. Mr. Gramann led GBBN as CEO and President from 1995 through 2010. Under his leadership, the firm had significant growth and became a multinational firm. Mr. Gramann became Chairman of GBBN’s Board in 2010 and served as Director of Healthcare from 2010 to 2013.

Mr. Gramann is known from his inspirational leadership and passionate mentorship. When asked to encapsulate his keys to a successful and enjoyable career, he stated, “do great work, make a profit, and have fun.” Bob also emboldened and demonstrated the belief that GBBN employees should keep priorities straight: “God, Family, GBBN.”

Firm accomplishments during Mr. Gramann’s leadership:

  • Built upon the business structure and processes that original partner and his predecessor Jack Gartner established and grew the practice into a multinational firm
  • Grew the firm from 35 employees to 115 employees
  • Grew from two locations to four locations
  • Established a global presence with the opening of the Beijing, China office in 2006
  • Firm received multiple American Institute of Architects (AIA) design awards
  • GBBN honored with Ohio and Kentucky Gold Medal Firm Awards from AIA – only regional design firm to receive both awards
  • Launched in4mation, a division of GBBN that provides facilities management solutions
  • Became Market Driven firm by establishing focus markets: Healthcare, Arts & Education, Community Development
  • Celebrated firm’s 50 Year Anniversary in 2008


Under Mr. Gramann’s collaborative leadership, GBBN was involved in many notable projects in Cincinnati that has led to the revitalization of the city as well as established client relationships that has led to long-term repeat business:

  • Great American Ball Park
  • Aronoff Center for the Arts
  • Duke Energy Center
  • The Ascent
  • Newport on the Levee and Newport Aquarium
  • Established and grew a 28-year relationship with Cincinnati Children’s Hospital Medical Center that has resulted in over $1Billion of construction projects including the most recently completed Clinical Sciences Pavilion
  • Formed long-term relationships with clients like University of Cincinnati, TriHealth, and Hamilton County. The firm has maintained an over 80% repeat business record that reflects commitment to understanding our clients' needs.

Mr. Gramann’s commitment to the community and architectural profession can best be demonstrated by his involvement in organizations:

  • American Institute of Architects (AIA)
  • National Fellowship Medal - Prestigious award given to only those that have made a significant contribution to architecture and society
  • Received AIA Ohio Gold Medal Award – Ohio’s highest personal award
  • AIA Ohio Mentorship Award – First person to receive this honor
  • Received an AIA Presidential Citation & Award of Recognition
  • Served as President of AIA Ohio and AIA Cincinnati Chapter Board of Directors
  • Served on the AIA Trust National Board
  • Served as National Vice President and on Board of Directors for the National Organization
  • Served on multiple design awards juries across the country
  • Cincinnati Architectural Foundation (CAF) Charter member
  • Served as President and on the Board of Directors
  • Received Distinguished Service Award – Apple Award
  • Society of St. Vincent DePaul, Cincinnati District
  • Currently is a Board Member and serves as Facilities Committee Chairman
  • St Vincent de Paul Advisory Board
  • Cincinnati Children’s Hospital Medical Center Foundation
  • Currently is on the Board of Directors and serves on the Major Gifts Committee
  • Purcell Marian High School
  • Served as President and member of the Alumni Board
  • Received Purcell’s highest award – “Outstanding Among All “
  • Phi Kappa Theta Alumni
  • Served as President and the Board of Directors
  • Legatus International
  • Served as President and on the Board of Directors
  • Leadership Cincinnati Alumni, Class 5
  • Vistage - International Organization CEO’s, Group 327


Additional Community Involvement

  • Hyde Park Country Club Member
  • Queen City Club Member
  • St. Mary Parish, Hyde Park

As demonstrated by his involvement and achievements, Mr. Gramann is committed to the advancement of Cincinnati and the profession of architecture across the country. His involvement in steeple construction projects has improved the built environment and his commitment to non-profit organizations that are improving the lives of its residents have resulted in positive outcomes. He remains passionate about continuing to make a positive impact.

GBBN CEO Matthew Schottelkotte commented, "on behalf of the GBBN Principals and staff, we are tremendously grateful for Bob’s leadership and guidance in bringing our firm to where it is today after 50 years of service. Bob has not only been an outstanding leader for our firm, he has personally been an invaluable mentor to me. We are looking forward to his continued advisement over the upcoming years.”