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R. Drayton Fair Retires After 21 Years with LLB Architects

LLB Architects announced that R. Drayton Fair, AIA, ALA, LEED AP retired at the end of April 2024 following more than 20 years of leading the firm’s municipal and library practice. Drayton has contributed significantly both to LLB Architects’ growth as a leader in the design of public buildings as well as its overall expansion with the opening of a second office in Worcester, MA in 2018. While Drayton will retire from LLB, he will continue in an advisory role and support the firm’s work through his longstanding relationships in the library and municipal sectors.

After receiving his Bachelor of Fine Arts and Bachelor of Architecture from the Rhode Island School of Design, Drayton built an extensive portfolio of work in the public sector, including a special focus on library design. Upon joining LLB in 2003, Drayton became a Principal and later Senior Principal and helped shape the future of the firm as it grew from a well-respected Rhode Island firm to a regional design leader.

Drayton’s legacy includes more than 40 library projects and numerous municipal projects completed while at LLB, including notable work at Acton Town Hall, Bolton Public Library, Boyden Library, Cranston Public Library, Foxborough Town Hall, Franklin Public Library, Marlborough Public Library, Maynard Public Library, Newton Free Library, North Scituate Public Library, Putnam Municipal Building, Watertown Free Public Library and Worcester Public Library. Current projects at the Sharon Public Library and Littleton Senior Center are under construction. Drayton’s work includes a focus on historic preservation and designing modern additions to complement historic libraries.

As a recognized expert in the planning and design of library and municipal facilities, Drayton has taught and spoken at universities and conferences throughout New England. These include the Boston Society of Architects, Harvard University, New England Library Association, Rhode Island School of Design, and recently Roger Williams University. He served as the President of both AIA Rhode Island and AIA New England. Drayton is an active member of the National Trust for Historic Preservation, the American Library Association, and the U.S. Green Building Council. He currently serves on the Cranston Public Library Board of Trustees and the Rhode Island Board of Examination & Registration of Architects.

Brian Valentine, AIA, LEED AP, who joined LLB Architects in 2014 and was named a Principal in 2021, has worked with Drayton on numerous library and municipal projects. “During my 10 years at LLB, Drayton and I collaborated on multiple projects. He is focused on designing spaces that reflect the story of each community and inspire learning and exploration. From historic reading rooms to playful children’s spaces, Drayton sees an opportunity to inject creativity and life into each project.” Brian and Drayton worked on major renovation and addition projects at Franklin Public Library, Marlborough Public Library and Worcester Public Library.

LLB Architects, which celebrates 88 years in business this year, is led by Senior Principals Christian J. Ladds, AIA, LEED AP and Kathleen A. Bartels, AIA LEED AP. They are joined by four Principals who represent the firm’s next generation of leaders: Suzanne DiSalvo, Associate AIA, LEED AP; Enno Fritsch, Associate AIA, LEED AP; Jonathan M. Taylor, AIA, LEED AP; and Brian L. Valentine, AIA, LEED AP.

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