Woman of Influence: Andrea Barker

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Andrea Barker, HB&A Architects

On any given day, you might see Downtown resident Andrea Barker pedaling down Tejon Street in heels with her skirt flowing in the breeze.

Barker is big on the environment. She composts, has no grass in her yard, grows a vegetable garden, and rides her bike almost everywhere. But browbeating about sustainability just isn’t her style.

“I don’t feel like I’m one of those eco preachy types,” she said. “I just live it.”

And she helps others live it through her work at HB&A, Architecture and Planning. As part owner and director of business development at the firm, Barker has helped secure several large projects for the firm including the Fort Lupton Readiness Center for the Colorado Army National Guard, a Leadership in Energy & Environmental Design (LEED) Gold certified building.

Architecture is in Barker’s blood. When she was in fifth grade her father, a long time Denver architect who eventually worked on the Getty Museum in Los Angeles, asked for her input on a school he was designing for Summit County. Although he’d come up with several initial floorplans, Andrea played with many more and one of her concept layouts ultimately was developed into the final design.

“To me architecture is about people and how they will use what you’re designing, not so much the building itself.”

Barker serves on the Downtown Partnership’s sustainability committee, an organization that hopes to bring more mixed use housing to the city’s central core.

She plays an active role at the First Congregational United Church of Christ, both as a moderator and volunteer on the church’s capital campaign. She’s a member of the 2012 signature class of Leadership Pikes Peak.

Born and raised in Colorado, Barker is a graduate of Denver’s Manual High School, alma mater of Denver’s current mayor. But Barker doesn’t have political aspirations. She just wants to quietly save the world through sustainable living.

“That doesn’t seem weird to me. It’s just what you do,” she says. Every day, in her case.