Sam Herin, AIA, NCARB

Sam Herin, AIA, NCARB, founding principal of Charleston-area architecture firm SMHa, was recently elected president of the Clemson Architectural Foundation (CAF).

Founded in 1956, CAF “supports and enriches the professional programs in the College of Architecture,” which includes South Carolina’s only programs in architecture, landscape architecture, city and regional planning, and construction science management. One of the CAF’s most significant accomplishments has been the establishment of the Charles E. Daniel Center for Building Research and Urban Study in Genoa, Italy, affording students the opportunity to study and analyze Italian and European building construction, architecture, planning, landscape architecture, art, and history. CAF also supports additional study programs in Barcelona, Spain and Charleston, SC.

“I am honored to be the newly-elected CAF president,” said Herin. “Throughout my time at Clemson, faculty often shared with us what the CAF enabled us to do, including funding real-life design projects in communities around South Carolina and travel opportunities to urban centers outside of Clemson.”

Herin, who received his Bachelor of Science in design in 1982 and Master of Science in architecture in 1984, explains that CAF-owned endowments generate approximately $110,000 annually to fund initiatives in teaching and research and annual supporters provide an average of approximately $120,000 each year in unrestricted gifts to supplement the endowment income. These funds serve as a catalyst to advance the architectural and construction professions through a variety of academic projects.

About SMHa: Founded in 1990 after Hurricane Hugo’s destruction to the South Carolina Lowcountry, Sidney Stubbs, FAIA; Charles Muldrow, AIA; and Sam Herin, AIA came together with the intent of using sustainable and resilient design to aid in the rebuilding of our historic and natural setting. In 2019, long-time SMHa architects Margie Longshore, AIA; Chris Altman, AIA; Billy Connell, AIA; and Jeff Johnston, AIA purchased SMHa, which is now recognized by the City of Charleston as a certified small woman-owned business (SWBE). Specializing in commercial and municipal architecture, planning, and interiors, predominantly along the coastal region of South Carolina, SMHa operates using the core principles upon which the original firm was founded: Architecture for its place, impeccable customer service, and commitment to community. To learn more about SMHa, visit

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