Michael Kovac

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Principal and Founder of Kovac Design Studio, Michael Kovac was born into an Air Force family in coastal Maine. His upbringing afforded him extensive travels as a child, including long stays in Okinawa, Japan. This early exposure to non-Western cultures, aviation, and aircraft would later go on to subtly inform his work.

Kovac’s family eventually settled in Las Vegas, from whence he left to attend the USC School of Architecture on a Trustee Scholarship. Upon graduating, Kovac worked in the office of notable modernist Jerrold Lomax before founding Kovac Architects - now Kovac Design Studio - in 1988 with commissions for high-end health clubs, commercial spaces, and detail-rich residences. His award-winning projects have been featured in publications such as Architectural Digest, Elle D cor, Dwell, Architectural Record, Design Milk, and the L.A. Times.

Kovac is deeply passionate about design and innovation in all its forms, spanning from architecture and lighting to industrial and product design. To this end, he is directing the studio’s work on a line of lighting and furniture pieces. Kovac is, as they say, “outdoorsy,” and has experimented with just about every outdoor sport REI sells gear for before he settled on mountain biking, stand-up paddle-boarding, and downhill skiing. He and his wife Karina, a pediatrician, met while trail riding and share a love of nature and sustainable living. They moved into the studio’s first LEED Platinum project, Sycamore House, in spring 2010.