John Shoesmith

John Shoesmith



“My goal is to foster collaborations that elevate the standard of senior living design. By balancing the unique needs of elders with a project’s functional, programmatic, and aesthetic requirements, we can create new and poetic spaces where elders live in community with meaning and purpose.”

John became interested in design for aging after witnessing his grandmother’s struggle with dementia. His observations about how the environment could be both an asset and an obstacle to her care compelled him to return to school, and he’s been designing for his grandma ever since. Since he started specializing in this area in 1992, John has dedicated his career to elevating the standard in design for aging and memory care. John’s work balances functional, programmatic, and aesthetic requirements against the unique needs of each resident, staff member, administrator, and visitor. His work involves the full continuum of senior living, including active adult, life-plan communities, assisted living, nursing home environments and intergenerational communities. His passion, however, remains in designing high-quality memory care environments that allow residents to continue to be active, successful, and purposeful. John believes in evidence-based design and is EDAC certified with the Center for Health Design. He also champions better design regulations for senior living environments as a leader in the Facility Guidelines Institute, a not-for-profit organization that develops guidelines for the planning, design, and construction of healthcare facilities.

Our Perkins Eastman

John is an invited panelist and speaker at national conferences as a nationally recognized thought leader in the design of innovative memory care and senior living environments. His efforts to create new models of design for aging have been recognized through national design, best practices, and advocacy awards.


  • Phone:

  • +1 (206) 489-1406
  • Email:

  • Linkedin:

  • Education

  • University of Washington;
    M.Arch-Design for Aging
  • North Dakota State University;
    B.Arch, B.S. Environmental Design
  • Associations

  • American Institute of Architects
    College of Fellows
  • National Council of Architectural Registration Boards
  • Center for Health Design Evidence Based Design Accreditation and Certification, EDAC Accredited Professional
  • U.S. Green Building Council, LEED Accredited Professional
  • Facility Guidelines Institute
  • Society for the Advancement of Gerontological Environments