Larry is interested in projects having ambitious social, economic, and environmental goals.
Larry has served as Project Principal for The Momentary, a sister facility to Crystal Bridges in Bentonville, Arkansas, that opened in 2020. He has served as Project Principal for the following award-winning projects: Intrinsic School Belmont Campus, UChicago Childhood Development Center – Stony Island, Inspiration Kitchens Garfield Park, Exelon Gymnasium, Wolcott School, and Hansberry College Prep. He was Project Architect for Muchin College Prep, the Old Town School of Folk Music, the Orchard Residence, the Depaul Residence, and a series of senior-focused Cafes for the Mather Foundation throughout Chicago. He also served as the Project Principal for the net-zero Midewin National Tallgrass Prairie Learning Center Competition.
He is a thirteen-time winner of InnoCentive Challenges in multiple disciplines. He is a current Department of Energy grantee and was a finalist in the third round of the DOE’s Solar Prize for TrackerSled, which intends to invigorate rural economies with local renewable energy.
Larry frequently lectures to professional and academic audiences on culture, education, and community-building topics. In 2022, he presented at the “Building Museums Symposium” hosted by the Mid-Atlantic Association of Museums. In 2021, he presented for a Northeastern University lecture series on “Building Community with Food.” In 2017, he authored an article for EducationNext on the design of blended learning spaces. He presented at Michigan’s Asian Carp Challenge in 2018, Texas’ Desalinization Conference in 2018, and The ASAE’s Great Ideas conference in 2017. He presented at SXSWedu in 2016 and served on a panel at the Higher Education Quality Council of Ontario in 2016. He presented at the National Association for the Education of Young Children conference in 2015 and the Society of College and University Planning Annual Conference 2014.
In 2010, he lectured to eight sitting US Ambassadors in Paris on the greening of US Embassies. From 2004 to 2014, he lectured on building design, construction, mechanical, plumbing, and electrical systems to candidates sitting for Architectural Registration Exam. In 2008, Larry Kearns was named Chicago Tribune’s “Chicagoan of the Year” in Architecture, and in 2016, he was elevated to a Fellow of the American Institute of Architects.
Larry is a LEED Accredited Professional and is a licensed Architect in eight states. He and his wife Winnie Kearns, a social worker, live in Oak Park. They have two grown children and one in high school.