Perry Johanson

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Perry Johanson (9 May 1910 in Greeley, Colorado – 15 June 1981 in Seattle) was a Seattle architect and one of the founders of the architectural firm NBBJ.

Johanson enrolled in the architecture program at the University of Washington in 1929 and graduated in 1934 with a B.Arch. While in school he was particularly influenced by Lionel Pries.

Johanson was initially employed by the Seattle firm Smith & Carroll, but within two years he was a partner in the firm, renamed Smith, Carroll & Johanson; the firm survived until 1951.

In 1943, during World War II, he joined with Floyd Naramore, William J. Bain, and Clifton Brady to form Naramore, Bain, Brady & Johanson (informally known as "The Combine" at the time) to undertake war-related projects such as reinforcing architecture. This joint venture worked so well that the partners continued it after 1945. Johanson remained a partner until his death. Today's NBBJ is the successor firm.

Johanson was one of the architects who joined together about 1950 to create the Hilltop community in Bellevue, Washington, a planned residential community of modern homes on large lots.

In 1950-51, Johanson served as the president of the Washington State AIA Chapter (predecessor to today's AIA Seattle Chapter). He was named a fellow of the AIA in 1960.

He married sculptor Jean Johanson in 1936. The couple had two children.


  • Ochsner, Jeffrey Karl, ed., Shaping Seattle Architecture: A Historical Guide to the Architects, Seattle and London: University of Washington Press, 1994, page 346; ISBN 0-295-97365-X
  • "Have We an Indigenous Northwest Architecture? Symposium." Architectural Record, 113 (April 1953), pp. 140–146.
  • "Houses for Defense at Bremerton, Wash; Private Architects Prove that a Government Project Can Be Attractive at Low Cost and without Sacrifice of Speed." Architectural Forum, 75 (December 1941), pp. 409–415.
  • "New Fellows of the AIA," Journal of the American Institute of Architects, 33 (June 1960), p. 52.
  • Obituary, AIA Journal, 70 (September 1981), p. 91.
  • Portrait, Architectural Forum, 95 (September 1951), p. 132.
  • Portrait, Progressive Architecture, 28 (November 1947), p. 12.
  • Portrait, Progressive Architecture, 29 (December 1948), p. 50.
  • Portrait, Progressive Architecture, 31 (September 1950), p. 57.
  • Portrait, Architectural Forum, 89 (July 1948), p. 20.