The DNA of Greenway Group: Our Legacy

Greenway Group has a long and interesting history which has made the firm a leader in the realm of improving business performance of architecture and design firms in the US, Canada and Europe. Lisa Henry took the helm of Greenway Group, as CEO in 2013 and shortly thereafter as its major shareholder and owner.

Under Lisa’s leadership, the Greenway Group consultant team has expanded from Atlanta and Denver to Boston, New York, Mexico City, and opened the Greenway Group corporate retreat and HQ at the Broadmoor in Colorado Springs. More recently, the firm has added unprecedented analytical, M&A, and financial transaction execution strength with the acquisition of a corporate finance team under the leadership of David Henry, Chairman and Partner.

When Jim Cramer, Founder and Chairman Emeritus (ret.), asked Lisa to succeed him she rose to the opportunity to ensure that Greenway Group continued its 24 year legacy of serving clients into its next epoch.

The Greenway story began in 1993, when Jim Cramer, founded Greenway Group, as a management consulting firm in Washington, DC after serving as the Executive Director/ CEO of the American Institute of Architects.  At about the same time Jim met Dr. Jonas Salk who became one of the early clients of Greenway Group.  They had a lot to talk about.  The fascination Dr. Salk had with architecture was ignited by his work with Louis Kahn on the design of the Salk Institute in La Jolla, CA.  Dr. Salk’s perception of organic evolution in the biological world and the correlation it had to the evolution of business enterprises captured both men’s imagination and sparked lively conversations. 

Greenway Group was working with other clients allied in the design professions who became enthusiastic about participating in their conversations. Soon over 25 architecture and design-based organizations were part of the conversations which were facilitated by Greenway and calls came from other leaders and firm principals inquiring how they might get connected. "Seeking new ways to intercept the future” was the phrase of choice during the first year of the group's involvement. Clients included Cecil Steward of the University of Nebraska, Doug Parker of Steelcase, and Arol Wolford of CMD Group. Principal leaders from Gensler; Skidmore, Owings & Merrill; HGA; Perkins & Will; CommArts; and two dozen other firms provided leadership vision and energy.  The ideas and analysis of the group helped Greenway Group to monitor  the pulse of the profession’s issues and challenges.  Benchmarks, best practices, and firm challenges were discussed and documented and served as the basis of the early publications of Design Intelligence, published by Greenway Communications.

Thus it was that Greenway Group founded the Design Futures Council.  Invitations for programs and sharing of ideas came from the American Institute of Architects, the Consulting Engineers Council, the Industrial Designers Society of America, the Aga Khan Trust for Culture, the World Futures Society, the International Interior Design Association, the American Society of Interior Designers, the Design-Build Institute, and many colleges and universities.

Today, Greenway Group’s clients benefit from the insights gleaned from the quantitative analyses conducted over the past 25 years and current subsequent recent research.