The principals of gardner spencer

smith tench & jarbeau, p.c.


Joseph g. gardner, jr., aia, ncarb

Principal / CEO


Bachelor of Architecture, Georgia Institute of Technology, 1973
University System of Georgia Studies Abroad Program, Cortona, Italy, 1972
Master of Business Administration, Georgia State University, 1979
PROFESSIONAL REGISTRATION:  Georgia, Florida, Illinois, Alabama, Iowa, District of Columbia, North Carolina, South Carolina, Tennessee, Virginia

Joe Gardner is a co-founder of the firm and continues to serve in projects in an active design, project management and contract administration capacity, particularly for church, library and performing arts commissions.  He is a 1973 graduate of the Georgia Tech College of Architecture, and a 1979 graduate of the Georgia State Graduate School of Business, but began his professional career in the summer of 1969 working in the office of John W. Cherry, Architect.  Joe remained with that firm while attending Tech and thereafter, being named a principal of Cherry Roberts Gardner Sullivan in January of 1980.  He served as the President of AIA Atlanta in 1994, and President of AIA Georgia in 1998.

Joe has been a lifelong member of Peachtree Christian Church (Disciples of Christ) and has served as Chair of the Official Board, Chair of the Executive Committee and Chair of the Elders.  He continues regular service on the Official Board as an Elder, and his wife, Gita, also serves on the Board as a Deacon.

Joe has resided in the Brookwood Hills Neighborhood since 1975, having served a number of terms as a board member, as well as the President of the Community Association in 1988.  He has represented Brookwood Hills as Representative to Neighborhood Planning Unit E, and is currently the President of the Brookwood Alliance, a consortium of neighborhoods clustered around Piedmont Hospital, which advocates for the preservation of these important residential communities.  As President, we had been instrumental in the creation of the Brookwood Alliance Plan, which recommends important improvements to the community’s commercial development framework as well as to the design of this Atlanta’s signature Peachtree Street. Such improvements will ensure a more walkable and bicycle friendly environment … as well as a safer place for Joe to walk his elderly canine … a source of great personal enjoyment and fulfillment.



Bachelor of Architecture, Georgia Institute of Technology, 1973
University System of Georgia Studies Abroad Program, Cortona, Italy, 1972
Harvard University, Graduate School of Design, Theaters for a New Millennium (Certificate),  1988

During his 40 plus years of practice, Les has successfully served as Project Director or Principal-in-Charge for a variety of projects of all types, including college and university, recreation, and religious facilities. Les also serves as a Director of the Wesley Foundation and the House Corporation of Gamma Tau, Inc., Phi Gamma Delta Fraternity, both at Georgia Tech.  He also serves as a member of the Advisory Board of the Rialto Center for the Arts at Georgia State University.  Les is a Trustee of Haygood Memorial United Methodist Church, a scout leader for pack 17 and a Director of the Weekday Children’s Ministries at Haygood.


Leslie A. Spencer, Jr., AIA, NCARB

Principal / President



B. Randall Smith, Aia, leed ap

Principal / Secretary


Master of Architecture, Rice University, 1978
Bachelor of Science, Architecture, Georgia Institute of Technology, 1976
Ecole des Beaux Arts, Paris, France
Georgia Institute of Technology, Studies Abroad Program, 1976

Randy Smith is a native of metro Atlanta having grown up in the Decatur area. He grew up enjoying drawing and building things. After graduating from Towers High School in DeKalb County in 1972, Randy entered the School of Architecture at Georgia Tech. A very influential part of that experience was a Study Abroad Program in Paris, France for the senior class. After graduating from Georgia Tech, he entered the architecture program at Rice University and received a Master of Architecture degree in 1978.

During graduate school, his wife, Lauren, and he were married in 1977. After graduation, they returned from Houston to Atlanta. At that time, Randy went to work for Thompson Ventulett & Stainback. A highlight was working with the team on the original planning on the second phase of the Georgia World Congress Center. He then worked for Porter Kelly Architects and gained experience in residential projects. Then, for several years, Randy worked for Cooper Carry & Associates. It was during that time that he obtained his architectural license in 1981. While at Cooper Carry, Randy advanced to the project architect level and gained experience in a variety of building types, including office building and retail projects.

Beginning in 1974, while he was a student at Georgia Tech, Randy worked summers and part time during school for John W. Cherry, Architect with Joe Gardner on school projects. Joe and Les Spencer established the firm of Gardner Spencer in 1983. In 1984, they invited him to join them, which he did and Randy has been with the firm for 30 years since. In 1989, he became a partner in the firm.

Randy and his wife Lauren have lived in East Cobb County since 1984. It was there that they raised their children, Greg and Alicia. Greg and his wife, Maggie, live in Bainbridge, Georgia and Alicia lives in Atlanta. Lauren and Randy are longtime members of Johnson Ferry Baptist Church.



Bachelor of Architecture, Cum Laude, Auburn University, 1984
Associate of Science, Architectural Drafting, Western Kentucky University, 1980
Associate of Science, Building Construction, Western Kentucky University, 1980
Harvard University, Graduate School of Design, Theaters for a New Millennium (Certificate), 1988

David is Principal and Vice President of Gardner Spencer Smith Tench & Jarbeau, PC, an Atlanta based Architecture and Interior Design firm. Initially serving local, commercial accounts, his practice now includes a diverse mix of public and private institutional clients located throughout the southeast. Specializations have emerged through extensive project experience in educational and performance arts halls, worship facilities and financial institutions. He oversees various project teams and guides the design process in scheduling and overall quality control while maintaining a high-level of communication with his client’s decision-makers. The needs and concerns of every project no matter the size, are his highest priority in ensuring a successful project outcome.

David has been practicing Architecture for over 31 years and has focused most of his attention in education. His award winning projects include specialty career technology classrooms, cafeterias and food service courts, media centers, performing arts halls, music choir, string and band facilities, as well as football stadiums, baseball and softball fields with multi-purpose facilities.

David is a graduate of Auburn University and is a member of the National Council of Architectural Registration Boards, American Institute of Architects, United States Green Building Council and the GA Chapter of Council of Educational Facility Planners International. He is also a LEED accredited architect and is licensed to practice Architecture in the State of GA.


David W. Tench, AIA, NCARB, LEED AP

Principal / Vice President



Keith A. Soloman, ASSOCIATE AIA

Principal / Project Manager


Master of Architecture, Georgia Institute of Technology, 1998
Bachelor of Architecture, University of Virginia, 1993
Associate Degree, Norfolk State University, 1990

A graduate of the University of Virginia, Keith Solomon earned his Bachelor of Science in Architecture in 1993. After a brief internship at GSST&J prior to his graduation, he quickly uprooted and moved to Atlanta. Five years later, Keith received his Master of Architecture from the Georgia Institute of Technology in Atlanta.

Keith Solomon has joined the ranks of Principals at the firm with diverse experience in creative, technical and business skills. With over 21 years of experience in architectural design, contract documents, project administration, and program planning, Keith demonstrates a global understanding of project and building needs. His projects range from a variety of projects such as theaters, libraries, K-12, Higher Education, and renovations of facilities to help people with physical disabilities. At GSST&J, he has focused on the Public School sector and has worked with every major school system in the metropolitan Atlanta area. His expertise has grown to include designing K-12 schools as well as Higher Education.

Keith is married to his high school sweetheart and they have twin daughters. Keith is dedicated to giving back to the community, and does so as an active Head Coach for his 16U Travel Fastpitch Softball team