Although sad for me, I want to congratulate Melinda Clark on her recent retirement from MZA.

Being ready for new adventures and having time to explore and develop many interesting hobbies and skills that she has been too busy to develop all these years is a well-deserved opportunity.

Melinda joined MZA in 2001, after working 17 years for a civil engineering firm.  It seems like yesterday when I offered her a position and she asked me to give her the weekend to think it over. When she called that Monday to say she’d like to give it a try, I only had an intuitive expectation of what a joy it would be to work with Melinda over the next 19 years and the way that it would fly by.

Her enthusiasm, willingness to learn, ability to keep everyone in the office updated on what was happening in the world outside of architecture, and support for and interest in everyone she worked with was truly a gift from her heart.

I enjoyed that we share a belief in synchronicity and neither of us was that surprised when we realized we’d both be in West Texas in March. Crossing paths for a great evening in Marfa TX this spring was something I’ll always treasure and can’t wait for our next adventures together! 

I knew retirement was on the horizon, but the isolation of the panemic drove home how much she enjoyed interacting with everyone on a personal level.  I’m sure everyone feels the same sense of loss that I do, but also treasures the gift of having been able to spend these years with Melinda. (If anyone wants to start a pool on how long she lasts before coming back, I’m in!)

Manuel Zeitlin