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Get to Know: Shehara Hapuarachy

Shehara Hapuarachy, AIA, NCARB, joined JAI in 2016.


What is your role at JAI?

Project architect/coordinator.


What three words best describe you?

Constructive, determined and brown.


What is your favorite aspect of being on the JAI team?

Helping people. Whether it’s on a team finishing a project or helping with a Revit question, I love being of use to someone else.


What three words best describe the culture at JAI?

Quirky, loyal and dedicated.


What has been your proudest moment to date working at JAI?

Completing my first rollercoaster! I’m still waiting to ride it, though …


How has working at JAI enhanced your professional development?

We do a lot of in-house collaboration, meaning lots of different ideas coming together, and that has taught me a more well-rounded thought process.


What or who is your go-to source for work inspiration?

Everyone in my family is a perfectionist; they are my inspiration for how I approach my work. Add to that, everywhere I go is a source of what to do – or not do. What could’ve made that space better, or what makes that space work? I try to apply that to whatever I’m working on.


If you could switch places for a day with any JAI team member, who would you choose?

The interns – they are usually the ones having to put a hand in every aspect of what we do, depending on where their help is needed. It’s the perfect sampler platter.


Before joining JAI, what was the most unusual job you held?

In high school I worked weekends cleaning my dad’s offices and job site trailers. It was a lot of work and a lot of mud.


What do you look most forward to at the end of a workday?

Hot tea, a warm blanket and a good book or movie. Maybe some bourbon.


If you were stranded alone on an island, what three material possessions would you hope to have with you?

Crossbow, satellite phone and utility knife.


What is your secret talent?

Analogies. I have no idea why. And spotting police on the road (or so my boyfriend tells me).


What is your favorite place in the world?

Sri Lanka, hands down. Food, culture, tea, food … the best things in life. Did I mention food?


What are you currently watching or reading?

Reading “Lords of Finance: The Bankers Who Broke the World” by Liaquat Ahamed and watching a series of horror and thriller movies – it’s October!


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