Olenka Hand

Design Manager

FOOD PATRONUS | Potatoes and butter

EARLY DAYS | Born in Dublin and raised in Austin—call both places home. Would be the one running barefoot on a cold Irish beach and roasting in the sun at Deep Eddy. Grew up attuned to my surroundings and understood the power of place to create a sense of belonging.

EDUCATION | Wanted to heal the world! Studied nutrition at UT but after graduation discovered the Montessori method of education and was swept off my feet. Spent four years creating classrooms of trust, exploration, and lots and lots of colored pencils.

BACKGROUND CHECK | Joined a year-long fellowship in human-centered design through Experience Institute to refine those placemaking skills. Landed an apprenticeship at the inimitable Bunkhouse Group and doggedly pursued an understanding of how to create environments deeply rooted in place.

Now, I play a part in bringing a vision to life, taking a design initiative from a plan through several spreadsheets, over a few hurdles to the finish line.

HOSPITALITY PHILOSOPHY | Take care of people.

FAVE THING ABOUT NW | A place to grow and the people I get to do it with.

SUPER POWER |I wish it was flying!